Cabinet Opens Gyms, Cinemas Under Strict COVID-19 Regulations
1 September 2021
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Information Minister Monica Mutsvangwa giving a post cabinet meeting briefing.

Cabinet has resolved that some outdoor activities including sports, cinemas and gyms resume under strict Covid-19 regulations compliance.

This follows a 30 percent decline in cases and deaths recorded over the past week which has seen the Government relaxing lockdown conditions.

Quarantine for travellers from countries hit by the Covid-19 Delta variant such as India, is no longer necessary as the strain is now the dominating one in Zimbabwe.

A total of 1 785 cases were recorded during the past week compared to 2 564 reported the previous week. The decrease is attributed to infection control measures being implemented by Government.

Speaking during a post cabinet briefing yesterday, Information, Media and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said there has also been a corresponding decrease in the number of people in need of hospitalisation for Covid-19.

“Considering that 98 percent of Covid-19 cases in Zimbabwe are of the Delta variant, there is no longer need to quarantine travellers from countries afflicted with the variant, such as India.

“Cabinet resolved that cinemas and theatres can now allow 50 percent sitting capacity of vaccinated clients, and that all workers should be vaccinated,” she said.

“National arts galleries across the country will be opened to vaccinated clients only, and that all workers should be vaccinated.

“Sporting activities, subject to strict observance of Covid-19 prevention measures and protocols whereby all attendant staff should also be vaccinated.”

She said for all local activities in which participants are below the age of 14, they shall be checked for Covid-19 symptoms.

“They shall also have regular temperature checks and follow social distancing protocols. Athletes or children aged 14 to 18 years are highly recommended to get vaccinated, and the National Sports Associations can work with the Sport and Recreation Commission to get this done,” the Minister said.

Minister Mutsvangwa said gymnasia, health spas and fitness centres will be allowed to open only to those who have been vaccinated.

The Minister said all sports clubs must ensure that their coaches, managers and any support staff are vaccinated.

She also said the Ministries of Health and Child Care; Primary and Secondary Education; and Higher and Tertiary Education, Innovation, Science and Technology Development are collaborating to ensure the safe and smooth re-opening of learning institutions.

“Standard Operating Procedures are being distributed to all schools in time for the reopening.

“Furthermore, the nation is being informed that the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education is holding Integrated Service Fairs in all of the country’s 72 districts,” said Min Mutsvangwa.

“The campaign is a whole-of-Government initiative on mobilising communities to send learners back to school on the opening day.

“The fairs also intend to mobilise educational goods and services, thereby ensuring that the learners have adequate resources to make up for time lost due to Covid-19 outbreak.”

According to the Cabinet, Covid-19 vaccination in border towns, other hotspots and people’s markets is progressing as scheduled.

“The initial 15 000 doses of the 30 000 Sputnik V vaccine donated by the Serbian Government are expected on 1 September, 2021. Cabinet wishes to inform the nation that owing to the tremendous support and acceptance of the vaccination programme by the churches, Government has launched Operation Marah.

“The churches can now call on Government vaccination teams to vaccinate members against Covid-19. The launch of Operation Marah will drive and accelerate the vaccination programme towards attainment of herd immunity.” -Chronicle