The ban on second-hand clothes imports must be strictly enforced after Cabinet was briefed on smuggling rackets in south-eastern Zimbabwe that could see more Covid-19 cases as a result.
Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said in her briefing after the meeting that “the apparent increase in the smuggling of second-hand clothes into the country through border posts such as Mt Selinda and Sango poses unprecedented danger of contracting COVID-19 by those who wear them. Government will henceforth upscale the enforcement of the law banning the importation of second-hand clothes”.
Turning to prices, she said: “Cabinet noted with concern the surging in prices of basic goods despite the recently agreed price moratorium by all the stakeholders,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
During the meeting, Ministers presented reports on the 100-day priority projects. Cabinet noted that some of the projects were hampered by the Covid-19 lockdown.
Minister of Primary and Secondary Education Cain Matema informed Cabinet that 3 060 ICT gadgets comprising iPads, laptops, projectors and accessories had been distributed to 60 primary schools in Lupane district;
Minister Mutsvangwa said Minister Mathema updated Cabinet that upgrading and registering of satellite schools in Midlands, Matabeleland South, Mashonaland West was 76,6 percent complete and that maintenance of teaching and learning infrastructure in the Midlands Province stood at 97,5 percent among other projects.
Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare Minister Professor Paul Mavima told colleagues that sign language training for 100 social welfare officers was halfway complete and that training of 300 sub-national staff on the Basic Education Assistance Module (BEAM) procedures and policies was at 36 percent complete, with 109 officers having been trained. BEAM is a programme to provide assistance to disadvantaged families to ensure their children can attend school.
Minister Mutsvangwa said her Local Government and Public Works counterpart July Moyo said the construction of block B under the ZRP Tomlinson Flats Project is 98 percent complete, with plumbing and electrical works almost complete.
Minister Moyo also gave an update on other various projects under his ministry dotted around the country including the construction of 10 housing units in the Tsholotsho Disaster Recovery Project which are now 60 percent complete.
Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi gave a progress report on the decentralisation of Legal Aid Directorate to Chiredzi, Beitbridge and Chivhu.
In his presentation Minister Ziyambi said under the Food Production Enhancement Project in the Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services, achievements include the planting of the 422 hectares of maize, 80 hectares of cow peas, and 18,3 hectares of sugar beans, which are now being harvested; four hectares of horticultural crops under drip irrigation; and seven hectares under overhead irrigation.
Minister Mutsvangwa said Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube presented a report on the Open Budget Survey of 2019, which covers 117 countries globally and Cabinet noted with satisfaction that Zimbabwe has moved up in the global and regional rankings to 3 in Africa and 52 in the world.