Why I don’t want Zimbabwe lockdown to be extended


The coronavirus is real. I have no doubt about that.

I am quite aware that Zimbabwe now has 18 positive cases with one recovery and three deaths.

The number of those testing positive has been increasing, almost on a daily basis of late, but all the same, I do not want the lockdown, now on day 17 and only four days to go, to be extended.

The reason! My 84-year-old mother could die, not of coronavirus but because of complications associated with high blood pressure.

You see, my mother has not been able to access her BP tablets since 3 April because of the lockdown which came into effect on 30 March.

Although there is a clinic within walking distance from her home in Gokwe South, she has not been able to access these tablets for years now.

Our arrangement has been that either we buy them in Bulawayo and give them to a member of the bus crew that travels from Bulawayo to Jiri, or we buy them at Gokwe Centre and we give them to kombis that ply the route.

These alternatives were all shutdown with the lockdown, so the tablets have been stuck at Gokwe Centre since 3 April.

Any extension will therefore mean that my mother will not be able to access those vital tablets.

Call that selfish and I humbly plead guilty.

And I now understand why some of those in the informal sector said they would defy the lockdown because if they did not die of coronavirus, they would die of hunger.

My mother might not die of coronavirus but I do not know how long she can live without those BP tablets.

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Charles Rukuni
The Insider is a political and business bulletin about Zimbabwe, edited by Charles Rukuni. Founded in 1990, it was a printed 12-page subscription only newsletter until 2003 when Zimbabwe's hyper-inflation made it impossible to continue printing.


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