“Lockdowns can only work when there is financial support or stimulus packages to ailing businesses from government,” Mutasa said.
He added: “The industry is not making money, and instead, we have to spend more money on COVID-19 tests and other overheads. Farmers and down the line suppliers have lost hundreds of thousands of their produce which is being thrown away because the restaurant business in not fully operational to be able to buy their goods.
“ROAZ members are 100% vaccinated and they feel punished by this extended lockdown. There will be serious hardships, loss of jobs in the restaurant industry, and loss of livelihoods.”
Confederation of Zimbabwe Retailers (CZR) president Denford Mutashu said: “The reduction of operating hours will result in declining revenues for businesses. The reduced time is compounded if an employee tests positive for COVID-19 as the business is forced to shut down for a minimum of three days to test all employees and disinfect the premises. CZR urges all retail and wholesale employees to take the COVID-19 jab and save businesses from escalating costs.”