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Panic grips Victoria Falls after Covid-19 case confirmed from town

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By Matabeleland North Correspondent

PANIC gripped Victoria Falls Friday night after government announced the country had recorded its first confirmed case of coronavirus in a town resident who recently returned from Britain.

Earlier, various stakeholders including tour operators, executives and community leaders circulated messages on WhatsApp platforms advising residents to stay indoors this Saturday.

They took to social media where they sought to engage each other on the way forward without meeting physically.

Some shops announced they were not going to open this Saturday as a precautionary measure.

A WhatsApp group, COVID-19 was opened to give constant updates to residents and to mobilise resources such as masks and sanitisers to be used at ports of entry.

Victoria Falls has been on the spotlight in the past week when a British tourist who recently visited the resort town later tested positive to the virus upon return to her country.

A local private medical doctor Mike Jeans launched a remote Telemed consultation service where he is consulting clients over the phone.

“I have decided to implement a new Telemed consultation service to try and address your need for information and advice.

“I am overwhelmed by the volume of messages and calls I am receiving as I am also trying to attend to my clients and at the same assist in protecting our community from the global pandemic,” he said in a statement.

Earlier, various organisations and operators had intensified use of hand sanitisers and face masks.
The tourism industry has reacted to the coronavirus with hotels and tour operators recording low business as a result of massive cancellations.

Some hotels and operators have cut workers’ salaries and some terminated contracts.