Mliswa calls for regular Covid-19 testing of MPs

Norton legislator, Temba Mliswa, has called for regular Covid-19 testing of Members of Parliament (MPs) as part of measures to curb the spread of the pandemic within the August House.

A number of lawmakers have in the past tested positive for the coronavirus leading to the suspension of parliamentary business.

Zimbabwe has so far recorded over 10, 000 cumulative positive cases of Covid-19 of which at least 9, 000 people have recovered while over 300 have succumbed to the deadly pandemic.

Reflecting in Parliament Tuesday on the death of ZBC journalist, Janet Munyaka, who succumbed to the respiratory disease Sunday morning, Mliswa said Covid-19 had become so real than ever hence the need for institutions to ensure the safety of their members.

“The same as this Parliament, why can we not have a situation where we are tested monthly or twice a week because we do not know who is positive here,” said Mliswa.

“I say so because my own sister and Hon Member for Hurungwe West and Provincial Minister of State, Hon. Mary Chikoka was infected. It is through the grace of God that she survived. It was acute and in no time she was in ICU under incubation. It is a miracle for her to survive.”

He added: “I have learnt that only until it happens to somebody close to you, can you appreciate it. I am hoping that it does not happen to anybody close to you so that we protect ourselves.”

Mliswa said it was important for citizens to always take precautionary measures against the pandemic.

“I see ministers sitting close to each other and yet in the dedication of duty they are exposed – all of us as Members of Parliament are exposed with people,” bemoaned Mliswa.

“What assurance can we get in this institution that we are all safe? That is the reason why I am imploring your good office that as of tomorrow – because we do not want to go back home and infect our families, may we get tested so that we know our status and take the necessary remedies that ensure that we are okay and we do not spread it.”

He further said: “Covid-19 is real. Once again condolences to the Munyaka family.

I think we have to take seriously the Covid -19 pandemic.  I say so because on behalf of many members, our condolences to ZBC Reporter, the late Janet Munyaka.   What really pains me is she definitely got infected while at work.”

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