You are currently viewing COVID-19 fight: Chongwe shifts gear
CHONGWE District Commissioner Robster Mwanza (right) with Chongwe Mayor Geoffrey Chumbwe (middle) disinfecting Waterfalls Mall in Chongwe district recently. PICTURE: COLLINS PHIRI

COVID-19 fight: Chongwe shifts gear

AT CHONGWE Toll Gate and Rufunsa on Great East Road, there is vigorous hand-washing and screening going on by a multi-sectoral team comprising health workers, council and police officers.
In the central business district of Chongwe town, the district COVID-19 task force has been conducting sensitisation meetings with residents.
This is the new normal for Chongwe now.
The hustle and bustle that is usually witnessed in this rural outpost, especially along the Great East Road, is not there anymore.
“People are shunning the town area, some are in their villages. They are scared of COVID-19,” Andrew Phiri, a taxi driver in Chongwe, says.
The town is located about 40 kilometres away from Lusaka, which is the epicentre of the pandemic in the country, and it is at a greater risk of recording a case.
The task force on the disease in the district is not taking any chances.
“We have been screening travellers passing through Chongwe through the Chongwe Toll Gate and Rufunsa since April 13, 2020 to ensure that we don’t record a case of COVID-19 here in Chongwe,” Chongwe District Commissioner Robster Mwanza says.
His fears and that of the task force against the pandemic in the district are genuine because some of the people who live in Chongwe work in Lusaka and vice versa.
There is a concern that the movement of such people and generally people going to Eastern Province from Lusaka, the epicentre, would be possible vectors of COVID-19.
“Chongwe is at a higher risk and, as such, the team here has devised a multi-sectoral response towards mitigating a possible spread of this disease,” he says.
Mr Mwanza says the task force against COVID-19 is targeting travellers and other visitors to the district.
“We tell them to mask up as it is now mandatory to do so. We have managed to turn back passengers from either Eastern Province or Lusaka without masks,” he says.
He is, however, not impressed with some people who have been disobeying mandatory masking in the district, especially those who use public buses.
“There was a woman who was arrogant last week. She didn’t want to mask up on the bus. This is not CLICK TO READ MORE