Residents across the country have called on responsible local authorities and government to act on the COVID–19 with haste as they feel the poor level of service delivery will compound the situation dangerously.
In a statement , 20 Residents Associations (RA) from across the country registered their worry over the lack of awareness from Councils and government on the ravaging virus.
“Residents Asociations (RAs) from across the country have noted with concern the lack of dissemination of relevant information to the public by government and other responsible authorities on the state of preparedness in the country on the Covid-19 situation, ”said the residents’ associations.
The residents implored local authorities to guarantee constant water supply to improve sanitation and hygiene as a preventative measure against Coronavirus.
“Local authorities are also commanded to create safe and hygienic conditions for citizens through improving the water supply situation, sanitation, and hygiene.
“Mobile tanks and water bowsers should be put in public places to increase hygiene. Hand sanitizers should also be put in public toilets and be made a requirement for public and other business premises to have hand sanitisers on their entrances so that people can use them as they enter.
“The state of service delivery needs to be improved as the country enters into a fight against the spread of this pandemic considering the rate at which the SADC region has recorded cases of the Covid-19 virus,” they said.
This was also echoed by Kuwadzana-based organisation Youth Assist Network leader Diana Bamala who said fear is reigning in the suburb over the Coronavirus owing to the poor reticulation system in the area .
“Owing to the poor reticulation system in our suburb, residents here are living in fear that if COVID-19 outbreak strikes there will be at high risk,” she said.
While President Emmerson Mnangagwa has declared the outbreak a national disaster and banned public gatherings of more than 100 people for 60 days among other ways to contain COVID-19, residents are doubtful whether these measures will be helpful
In an interview with this publication, an Epworth community leader, Memory Zawe, says banning public gatherings of more than 100 people will not work in the populous settlement owing to the perennial water crisis dogging the suburb.
“We have a serious water crisis in Ward 7 and the Council boreholes are the only option we rely on.
“Imagine that we only have five water collection points in the ward and one point servicing more than five hundred households so the ban will not be practical,” argued Zawe.
The coronavirus outbreak has been designated a pandemic by the World Health Organization (WHO) last week after the WHO chief Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said the number of cases outside China had increased 13-fold in two weeks.
The Zimbabwean government says it has not yet recorded a case of Coronavirus but close to home South Africa has recorded over 100 cases whilst Zambia registered first cases this week.