Coronaviruslockdown: Military readies for running battles with ‘daily wagers’

  • Zim economy is 90% informal
  • Citizens rely on hand to mouth economic activities
  • Traders vow to defy the lockdown

THE Zimbabwe security forces who will be deployed from Monday to implement the corona virus lockdown will endure running battles as traders have vowed to defy the order.

This comes on the backdrop of reports that Zimbabwe’s economy is 90% informal with the majority of traders surviving on hand to mouth as the debilitating economy does not allow any savings.

Observers said without a contingent plan to provide basic commodities to the citizens the lockdown will impact negatively as almost three quarters of residents in Harare alone rely on selling wares at places such as Mbare Musika, Magaba, Mupedzanhamo as well as in every street corner in the Central Business District.

Most people survive by hustling everyday to make ends meet meaning if they stay at home not for 21 days but only for a week they will starve.

“We survive by hustling everyday, if we don’t work for that particular day our families are doomed to starve,” said one Simbirori Zvinashe who is a vendor at Mbare Musika.

“What are we going to eat for 21 days without hustling?

“Let me give you a run down of my day to day activities.

“I order tomatoes at the market every morning at 4am. I pack them and then trade in the streets and bus terminus.

“Around 4:30pm I rush to buy some mealie meal and vegetables for the evening meal.

“That is the cycle of our lives. We eat what we kill on a daily basis.”

On Friday President Emmerson Mnangagwa announced a complete lockdown aimed at curbing the spread of the deadly corona virus.

Zimbabwe currently sits on seven confirmed cases and a lockdown, just like in other countries, is meant to stop the spread of the virus.

However, reports from other African countries like Rwanda, say government has put in place mechanisms to deliver food stuffs to its citizens.

Zimbabwe went into a panic mode after it recorded its first Covid19 death which was the turning point for the government to take strict measures to contain the outbreak.


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