By Nokuthaba Dlamini
Matabeleland North province on Friday received a further 31 returnees, bringing the total number to 164 amid reports that the provincial quarantine centre at Mosi-oa-Tunya High School in Victoria Falls is now overcrowded.
The provincial social welfare officer Mcnon Chirinzepi said the quarantine centre has exceeded its carrying capacity of 100 people.
He said of the latest returnees 11 were females and 20 males.
The cumulative total of returnees that have been received since the inception of the centre now stands at 164 being 88 males and 76 females.
“Yesterday we transferred 34 returnees being 24 males and 10 females to Lupane State University in order to maintain our carrying capacity of 100 returnees at the centre,” he said.
“Those transferred are awaiting their Covid 19 test results and will be discharged from the University as soon as their results are out. The current enrolment now stands at 96 being 51 females and 45 males.”
The returning citizens entered the country through Kazungula and Victoria Falls borders from Namibia, Botswana, Zambia, Cameroon and South Africa.
The department has discharged 34 returnees who got their results last week.
They all tested negative to Covid-19.
“We are ready to discharge all those who test negative as soon as the results are out,” Chirinzepi added.
The department also appealed for more food, toiletries, sanitary ware and detergents.
Chirinzepi added that they needed fuel to transport materials to the centres and there was no response “despite having requested it at the beginning of the programme.”
“Further to that, the other quarantine centres in the districts need to be supported so that they are ready to receive returnees and these need support.”
Quarantine centres have been identified in all the seven districts within the Province.