Zimbabwe govt releases $591m for Covid-19 fight

Prof Mthuli Ncube

Government has so far released $591 million for immediate Covid-19 response support, with some of the money channelled towards the rehabilitation of Wilkins Infectious Diseases Hospital.

Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube said the Ministry of Health and Child Care got $154 million for immediate use in the Covid-19 fight.

The figure excludes the cost of the 4 000 new health personnel that are being hired.

For the Wilkins rehabilitation, Government released $3,7 million.

Yesterday, Prof Ncube toured Wilkins Hospital to assess progress.

“The figure for the whole Government is $591 million that has been released for immediate Covid-19 response support, and this includes $60 million for Chemplex for water treatment chemicals, and lockdown operational costs, and cash transfers to the vulnerable,” he said.

“I visited Wilkins Hospital in order to appreciate for myself how the resources that Treasury has released are being used in renovating and upgrading the facility.”

The rehabilitation of Wilkins, which is almost complete, was also supported by the Chinese. Chinese companies operating in Zimbabwe have invested over US$500 000 for the rehabilitation of Wilkins to boost efforts to control the spread of Covid-19.

An additional US$150 000 has also been put together for the procurement of medical equipment, which includes an oxygen machine, breathing machine, test kits and protective suits, masks and other protective clothes for health workers.

Prof Ncube said more resources were being availed to fight Covid-19 on an ongoing basis to eliminate “this invisible enemy”.

“Working together and solidarity is key to winning this fight,” said Prof Ncube.