By Robert Tapfumaneyi
OLD political foes President Emmerson Mnangagwa and opposition MDC leader, Nelson Chamisa have finally found cause to unite and join hands in the fight against the ravaging coronavirus.
In neighbouring South Africa, President Cyril Ramaphosa and Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) president Julius Malema have closed ranks as the pandemic wreaks havoc in that country and most parts of the world.
While addressing the media at the party’s headquarters, Morgan Richard Tsvangirai Monday, Chamisa said he and Mnangagwa should unite and build what he termed; “Team Zimbabwe”.
“We can’t afford to be divided as a nation. We need to be united and move together and confront this enemy. Once we deal with this virus that we are supposed to be dealing with, we will always retreat back to our politics and continue as normal. At the moment, there is no politics,” said Chamisa.
“We are able to have Team Zimbabwe effort, beyond the political parties, beyond sloganeering, beyond the finger pointing, it doesn’t help to say Mnangagwa is inadequate, if he is not inadequate, it doesn’t save our lives.”
He said the government, local authorities and politicians should not be complacent in dealing with the coronavirus.
“I want to and I must continue to say I must resist the temptation to go into politics, I can’t be pointing fingers I can’t be blaming anyone. I must point fingers at ourselves we need to do more.”
“Just look outside the window, look at how people are going about their normal business and then compare with what is happening in Italy and what is happening in Spain and other countries it shows that we are not doing enough as a people, as a country.
“We need to educate and press the button of emergency and to drive the country into a mode of extraordinary that is what we need it is for all of us.”
Chamisa said in neighbouring South Africa, political party rivalry had been set aside in order to deal with the coronavirus.
“We don’t need politicians to tell us to save lives. We must do whatever we can and this is our effort to say let’s lead. So we need to have a radical shift. Our police force, our army must be turned into an active mode so that they begin to do what they know best and we know that we have a very competent military.”
In his address Monday, Chamisa urged Mnangagwa to lockdown Zimbabwe to curb the spread of the deadly virus. Later in the same evening, Mnangagwa addressed a press conference at State House where he announced sweeping measures and bans to stop the spread of coronavirus, which recorded its first death Monday afternoon.
The measures include an immediate ban on gatherings around night clubs, bars, beerhalls, movie houses, swimming pools, gymnasiums and sporting activities until further notice.
With immediate effect, all the country’s borders have been closed for all non-essential travel for both in-bound and out-bound traffic.