By Aleck Murimigwa
The government says the recent spike in Covid-19 cases in the country is a demonstration that its surveillance systems put in place to quickly detect cases is bearing fruit.
COVID-19 Taskforce Coordinator Dr Agnes Mahomva said the government has improved its systems to contain the pandemic timeously and effectively.
Cases spiked days after the government gave the green light for schools to re-open before ordering boarding scholars to stay put during the Easter holidays in a bid to curb the spread of the deadly pandemic.
“We had outbreaks at schools when schools reopened. These were the outbreaks that created a little spike and we were very aware because last year when we had outbreaks in schools, we revamped up our surveillance systems in schools, we revamped our responses to ensure that if it never happens again, we will be able to pick it up urgently.
“That is what happened. Our surveillance system was so strong that we were able to pick up those cases. If our surveillance systems in schools were not strengthened, we may not have picked those cases,” she said.
Several schools last week recorded spiked cases of COVID-19 infections with David Bonda Girls High, a boarding school in Manicaland Province, recording over 200 cases within 10 days.
Schools in Matabeleland Provinces were also of no exception with schools like Embakwe High recording 91 cases, while Umzingwane and Sacred Heart Girls High schools in Matabeleland South recorded hundreds of cases a few days ago.
In a statement recently, girl rights movement Shamwari Yemwanasikana pleaded with the government to strengthen its guard against COVID-19 cases spike in schools to protect learners.
“We implore the government to continue making strides and putting measures that ensure that learners are protected from the COVID-19 pandemic. This will go a long way in preventing the spike in cases which will inevitably lead to schools closing, derailing once again the learning process,” reads part of the statement.
However, Ministry of Health and Child Care latest data show that COVID-19 cases have dropped drastically with the country recording only 16 cases.
“As of 26 April 2021, Zimbabwe had 38 102 confirmed cases, including 35 149 recoveries and 1 560 deaths. To date, a total of 353 834 people has been vaccinated against COVID-19,” the government said in its daily report.