Zimbabwe: Budiriro Vendors Defy Lockdown Order, Says They Need Put Food On the Table

30 March 2020

Despite Harare central business district being largely deserted as people heeded the lockdown order announced to contain the coronavirus pandemic, it was a rather different story in Budiriro with a few vendors seen going about their usual routines.

Coronavirus dubbed COVID-19 by the World Health Organisation has already claimed one life from the seven infected cases in Zimbabwe while at global level over 20 000 people have succumbed to the deadly pandemic from the over 500 000 confirmed cases.

Scores of people interviewed by 263Chat in Budiriro said they had no option but to sell their wares since they survive from hand to mouth.

"Staying at home does not mean anything to me because i eat what i work for on that particular day. If i stay at home it means i will be killing my children with hunger while trying to run away from corona," said Prudence Matenga,a vegetable vendor.

"I have to sell my stuff because that is what is putting food on my table," said an elderly woman only referred to as Mai Tsitsi who sell fresh breams in Budiriro 4.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa has emphasised the need for people to stay at home saying the 21 day lockdown was not a punishment but a necessary process to save lives.

Government through the ministry of finance has announced that it has put up resources to assist one million households to cope with the lockdown with the disbursement set to commence immediately.

In South Africa, hundreds of people have been arrested for breaching the lockdown order which is now on day four.

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