Zimbabwe is currently under a 21-day lockdown, aiming at controlling the spread of the pandemic, which came into effect on March 30 and expiring on April 19 but subject to review.
President Mnangagwa, however, did not indicate whether the shutdown would be extended or not.
Addressing the nation on the occasion of Zimbabwe’s 40th independence anniversary Saturday, Mnangagwa said despite problems brought about by the deadly disease which has claimed thousands of lives globally, it was still important for the country to keep the economy functional.
“Beyond grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic, we have to keep our economy functional,” said President Mnangagwa.
“Unavoidable shocks and disruptions must be mitigated. Once the lockdown is over, we must all get back to work, with discipline and harder effort as we ready ourselves for a speedy economic recovery.”
He said the silver lining to the present global health crisis was the awakening for Zimbabwe’s national creativity and inventiveness.
“It is commendable that local industries and universities have become hubs for import substitution, starting with the essential materials needed for immediate use in our health sector,” he said.
“My administration is committed to support the manufacturing processes developed as part of our defence against COVID-19. It is the expectation that buoyant industries that meet our needs, while serving regional, continental and even global demand will emerge henceforth.”
He added: “Scientific research, development, innovation and technologies for the vast economic spectrum towards greater value addition will be encouraged. Let us strive to be a knowledge-building, and knowledge-driven society, by turning our literacy levels to real goods and services for our people and beyond.”