By Staff Writer
State-run public transport operator Zupco on Wednesday joined the fight against the COVID-19. after it disinfected bus termini in Harare.
Zimbabwe is currently going through a 21-day national lockdown to minimise the spread of the respiratory ailment that has claimed more than 43,000 lives across the globe while the number of confirmed cases around the world is now over 870,000.
The decision by Zupco to disinfect traditionally highly populated taxi ranks in the capital comes a few days after a ministerial taskforce which was set up to minimise the spread of the disease ordered private commuter omnibus operators to stop operations. Zupco was however given a waiver to carry a maximum of 50 passengers on its coaches.
Zupco chairman Quinton Kanhukamwe told Open Parly that the public transport operator had deployed its staff to clean up taxi ranks in the capital following the outbreak of the disease last month.
“We want to make sure that buses are not a source of the spread of the infection itself,” he said.
Kanhukamwe, who is also the Vice-Chancellor at the Harare Institute of Technology said the tertiary institution had begun producing sanitisers to ensure public health. Government has already suspended duty on goods such as masks and health sanitisers in its quest to fight the pandemic.
“We have been tasked to complement efforts that the private sector, industry and other universities are doing, so we are busy right now producing various types of sanitises. We have brought back some of our students and staff on the ground and they are busy manufacturing the sanitisers.”
Official figures show that one death and 8 cases have been reported in Zimbabwe to date.
Fears are that the figure could increase in highly populated areas, a concern that prompted authorities to call for a 21-day lockdown to promote social distancing. Get all COVID-19 statistics for Zimbabwe from COVID-TRACKER