President Lungu yesterday invoked the provisions of the Public Health Act to declare a 24hour lockdown to restrict movements of people in and out of Kafue so that health workers can conduct screening and testing for COVID-19.
This follows the declaration of the district as a hotspot for Coronavirus infections after 3 cases were recorded out of which one was a fatality.
Apparently, Minister of Health Chitalu Chilufya has revealed that 100 health officers have been deployed to Kafue district to conduct surveillance screening, disinfecting public place and testing of people in targeted areas.
At least, 120 police officers have been deployed to Kafue District among them traffic officers to ensure compliance during the period of lock down.
Zambia Police spokesperson Esther Katongo says the District has been zoned into six and officers deployed to all the six zones to police the areas and ensure compliance by members of the public.
She said all trading centers including markets in the District have been closed therefore restricting the movement of people.
Apparently, while the authorities are satisfied with progress so far, residents of Kafue have called on for similar measures to be implemented in Lusaka.
Mercy Moomba said she thought the screening was going to be conducted on a door to door basis. Adding some may not visit the screening centres.
“If it is a hospital how many will go there? Better door to door,” said Juliana Mwila.
Priscilla Chilombe Moyo, concurred, adding that this is what the authorities should have done in Lusaka.
“This is what they should have done in Lusaka, especially after identifying the hot spots mass screening is the way to go,” she said.
Kapela Kapela echoed the same sentiments saying serious measures should be taken also for Lusaka.
“Lockdown even Lusaka. Right now we have a stampede of people moving in squeeze, city markets and in town so we can not be certain that case are mainly in Kafue. Lusaka is a capital city, please listen to us, lockdown Lusaka too,” he said.
Apparently, the call to have Lusaka locked down come at the time, the minister of health had admitted that the capital city was a danger zone. Chilufya said so in one his routine updates on the virus.
He even urged people not to come in or get out of Lusaka. “Lusaka is the epicenter of the virus, please avoid coming into Lusaka to avoid picking the disease. Avoid going out of Lusaka so as not to take the virus to other places,” he that other day.
Others queried why some of those deployed health officers were not using Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) saying that endangers their health. There urged the officials to also value their own safety and health by using PPEs.