BY PRAISEMORE SITHOLE
MATABELELAND North province is planning to embark on mass vaccination of people in COVID-19 hotspot areas in order to curb the spread of the virus.
This was said by the Provincial Affairs minister Richard Moyo who told Southern Eye that some of the targeted areas included Binga, Lupane, Hwange and Nkayi.
“We have just received 15 000 doses and we are targeting mass vaccination in hotspot areas. We have already instructed health personnel to take vaccines to Binga, Lupane, Hwange and Nkayi,” he said.
“Mass testing is necessary because, as we speak, we have active cases and if we relax, we will see a rise in infections and that is something we do not want.”
Moyo said vaccination in Victoria Falls had worked well, but other areas in the province, where a lot of people were not yet vaccinated were now COVID-19 hotspots.
“As government, we are coming up with ways to mitigate the situation through availing vaccines and imposing localised lockdowns. This virus is more dangerous and life-threatening and those eligible should get their jabs. People should take a leaf from Victoria Falls. After getting inoculated, there are now a few cases, or no cases of COVID-19 in the resort town, which means the vaccine works. At least when you get the infection, your system can fight and you can be saved,” he said.
Moyo said while government had focused more on Victoria Falls, it had neglected Hwange, where cases of the virus were now soaring.
“We focused more on Victoria Falls and many people got vaccinated and right now, we are not recording cases. However, we regret neglecting areas like Hwange because now, the cases are soaring. Therefore, we have resolved to focus on these hotspot areas in order to curb the spread of the virus,” he said.
The minister said the increase in cases could also be attributed to movement of people from Bulawayo to buy farm produce in Matabeleland North province.