By Alois Vinga
HIGHER and Tertiary Education minister, Amon Murwira says locals who purchase fake Covid-19 test certificates in order to be allowed entry into neighbouring South Africa must face the full wrath of the law.
Murwira was speaking to NewZimbabwe.com in his capacity as chairperson of a government constituted taskforce to tackle the pandemic.
This comes after some locals desperate to cross into the rich neighbour have resorted to printing fake certificates indicating they were Covid-19 negative in order to fulfil the requirement.
Fears abound an influx of foreigners who have not been tested and confirmed free of the virus could complicate the already dire Covid-19 situation in South Africa.
Videos circulating in the media have shown many fake certificate holders confessing they indeed bought the fake certificates to gain easy entry into the neighbouring country.
South Africa’s Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi on Monday said while it was not clear if there were also syndicates in his country who were selling fake Covid-19 test certificates to foreign nationals returning to work, at least 50 such tests were found at the Beitbridge Border Post with Zimbabwe.
Speaking to NewZimbabwe.com Wednesday, Murwira said the law would be applied harshly on anyone found in possession of fake certificates.
“Through combined efforts between Zimbabwe and South Africa, we have agreed that anybody caught with such fake documents must face the full wrath of the law.
“This virus is transmittable and if someone opts to falsify the result, then moves around between places, there would be a very high risk of infecting innocent people,” he said.
Murwira reminded Zimbabweans on the need to take this virus seriously and avoid acts of irresponsibility.
“It is not an ordinary stigma disease. Honestly, faking results for the pressure to visit your family or return to work is unfair because such irresponsibility exposes one’s family and workmates,” added Murwira.
The threats to come down heavily on delinquents comes after the courts in Harare Wednesday sentenced popular music producer DJ Fantan and his workmates to six months imprisonment for organising a New Year’s Eve music gig against the country’s Covid-19 regulations.
Zimbabwe on Tuesday reported 1 365 cases and 34 deaths linked to the pandemic while South Africa has 1.1 million confirmed cases and 30 524 deaths.