By James Muonwa
AUTHORITIES were forced to disperse hundreds of mourners who had thronged White City Cemetery in Chinhoyi last week to bid farewell to one of the Mashonaland town’s popular sons, exceeding the limit for those allowed to attend a funeral.
This comes in the wake of two Chinhoyi University of Technology (CUT) lecturers having tested positive for the pandemic, according to Mashonaland West medical director Dr Wenscelus Nyamayaro.
Scores of residents from all walks of life converged at the cemetery for Newman Katsamura’s burial, attracting the attention of law enforcement agencies.
Prior, hundreds had also descended at the Katsamura’s Chikonohono residence for a church service and body viewing.
It took Chinhoyi Municipality’s director of Health Services William Mayabo and Housing and Community Services director Timothy Maregere to convince the gathering to disperse.
Mayabo said the number of mourners exceeded the permissible 50 people per funeral, hence the crowd had to be dispersed to curb the potential spread of Covid-19.
“People gathered here are too many and this is in violation of the laid down Covid-19 containment measures,” said Mayabo.
After a brief tete-a-tat between the two council directors and those presiding over the funeral proceedings, the gathering dispersed without any incidence.
The number of confirmed Covid-19 cases in Zimbabwe has surpassed 2 400 with 34 recorded deaths so far.
Government has moved to impose stricter lockdown measures in a bid to contain the highly contagious disease.