By Mary Taruvinga
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa has made a passionate plea to Zimbabweans to trust in God during the country’s fight against coronavirus which has claimed three citizens in the last three weeks with infection figures ever galloping across the globe.
In his Easter holiday message, Mnangagwa said there was, however, need to be happy during this crisis because God always has his eyes on his people.
His message comes as Zimbabwe is half way through a 21-day national lockdown to control the spread of the deadly virus, which has seen the country confirm 11 cases among which are three deaths.
However, Mnangagwa, whose government has been criticised for not doing enough in the fight against the coronavirus, urged Zimbabweans to put their faith in Jesus Christ as He had also triumphed over death.
“On behalf of the Government of Zimbabwe and on my own behalf, I would like to wish Zimbabweans at home and abroad a joyful Easter filled with blessings, peace, love and the hope of a brighter tomorrow,” said Mnangagwa in his message.
“As we commemorate the death and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, may we be reminded that we have a faithful God who is ever present even in the midst of this global threat to life as a result of COVID-19 pandemic.
“This Easter holiday may we be further encouraged by the knowledge that Jesus Christ triumphed over death. His love is much more powerful, offering us assurance that the difficulties and challenges that threaten to overwhelm us, will be overcome,” he added.
The Zimbabwean leader urged the people not to despair as they would this year not be able to gather to remember the death and resurrection of Jesus Christ.
“I am aware that in the past, the Easter holiday season would see most families, friends as well as worshippers gather together to remember the gift of eternal life given to us by God through the death and resurrection of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Sadly, this will not be possible, as we continue to observe the essential lockdown we instituted to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, do not despair for the Bible says in Mathew 18 verse 20, where two or three gather, the Lord is present with them.”
Mnangagwa, whose government has faced a backlash over failure to provide adequate resources and support in fighting the coronavirus outbreak, also promised to move with speed in training health frontline workers and also provide them with personal protective equipment.
“We shall be moving with greater speed to provide the workers in the frontline with all the adequate personal protective equipment and personal protective clothing as well as the requisite training to ensure their safety in the wake of the COVID-19 threat. The answer to this crisis lies in our discipline and unity.”
However, Mnangagwa’s main political rival Nelson Chamisa has accused the current government of watching while a disaster was looming in Zimbabwe by its failure to carry out mass tests for the virus.
“A disaster is loading in Zimbabwe. Lives are at risk. We must invest on testing and tracking. A lockdown without testing, tracking and isolation is useless. Leadership a necessity!” Chamisa said Thursday.