Nkosilathi Sibanda, Sunday News Correspondent
LEADERS of the Apostolic churches in the country have been urged to encourage their members to take up Covid-19 vaccination in order to support Government interventions to fight the spread of the contagion.
Association of Apostolic Churches in Zimbabwe (AACZ) president, Bishop Tsungai Vushe, in an interview last week said they were on a campaign to educate their members on the need to inoculate. This comes at a time when Government has started the first phase of the vaccination programme following the delivery of 200 000 Sinopharm vaccines from China. The country started its vaccine roll out last week, with Vice-President Constantino Chiwenga being the first to take the jab.
The vaccination awareness campaign spearheaded by AACZ is conducted through digital platforms through which the organisation uses focal leadership in various churches to disseminate information.
“We commend the Government of Zimbabwe for its persistent fight to get the people protected from Covid-19. The vaccination programme must be embraced by all of us and that is why we as the Association of Apostolic Churches in Zimbabwe urge our members to go for the jab.
“There is nothing to fear in what God has instructed our leaders to do. Taking the vaccine is voluntary and if the chance to do so is availed, all Apostolic churches have to join in and get vaccinated,” said Bishop Vushe.
Bishop Vushe said they have told fellow members to desist from following messages on social media that seem to discourage people from vaccinating.
“The Sinopharm vaccine has been approved by authorities with knowledge and that is where our trust lies.”
He urged Apostolic churches to adhere to the law as it has emerged that some were violating lockdown rules by hosting church gatherings. The lockdown regulations restrict the opening of churches.
“Seeking medical treatment is mandatory when we talk of Covid-19 infection. Members are advised that should they suspect infection, they should quickly rush to the hospital.
“We are aware that as Africans our first port of call in the event of a disease like this is to depend on our beliefs, but this is a different scenario. I encourage not only Apostolic members but the whole country to exercise caution and seek medical care on time. We should be each other’s keepers and not be careless,” he said.