Death at Harare Polytechnic as Covid-19 cases surge countrywide

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HARARE – One person has died from Covid-19 during an outbreak of the virus at the Harare Polytechnic in Harare.

Fourteen members of staff tested positive during routine testing earlier this week, and one succumbed on Wednesday, according to college principal Tafadzwa Mudondo.

“Unfortunately, one of our support staff from the 14 that tested positive has succumbed to Covid-19. We are engaged with the ministry on this and we are continuing with testing measures,” Mudondo said.

Mudondo said no decision had been taken to close the college, with mass testing of students and staff already underway.

In March this year, Harare Polytechnic suspended student Yolanda Musithu for allegedly hugging a friend inside the college grounds.

Zimbabwe has seen a sharp rise in new infections in recent days, prompting the government to tighten restrictions and impose localised lockdowns in Kariba, Karoi and Kwekwe.

On Wednesday, the country reported 238 new infections and three deaths, pushing the total death toll to 1,640 from 40,556 cases since March last year.

Zimbabwe has fully vaccinated over 423,000 people, while nearly 700,000 of its 15 million people have at least taken the first dose.