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ZCIEA Press Statement on 30-Day lockdown by the Government of Zimbabwe

Zimbabwe Chamber of Informal Economy Associations (ZCIEA), is deeply concerned with the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and devastated by the loss of lives (including informal economy workers and traders) in the world due to this global pandemic.

We would like to acknowledge the 30-day lockdown measures as announced by the Minister of Health Vice President CGDN Chiwenga to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in Zimbabwe.

As a membership-based organization where our members are informal workers and traders who are mainly feeding from hand to mouth and are still struggling to get their footing since 2020 lockdown measures:

We are equally very concerned with the spike of COVID-19 cases.

We are further worried by the fact that even some of our members are becoming victims of the pandemic.

This, therefore, compliments to support the effort by the government to strengthen safety measures by introducing 30-day lockdown measures. We believe lockdown, in as much as certain level of infringements, limits the movement of people and therefore reducing the spread of COVID-19.

However, we have a critical concern on the lockdown condition where certain sections have been allowed to trade and all the informal economy sections have been closed. We feel Informal economy traders have a big bracket of essential services provision at the community level e.g. vegetable market places. We also feel that the 30-day lockdown measures should have straight away moved bi-laterally with a social safety net scheme to cushion the most vulnerable in society.

We would want the government to incorporate us as an Informal Economy Organisation in policy and implementation move in the fight against COVID-19 where we concentrate on rescue, awareness, resuscitation, and developmental agenda which has a strong pillar of disaster preparedness to support efforts of the informal economy.

This is part of the socio-economic inclusion of informal economy activities into mainstream activities as we march into the 2030 Agenda through the National Development Strategy (NDS 1). We are looking forward and prepared for an engagement with the key arms of the government to participate in the development of Zimbabwe. We have given high interest to the following seven key thematic areas: theme 1- Respect for and recognition of the Informal Economy, theme 2- Development of linkages between the Informal economy and Formal businesses, theme 3- Market access and infrastructure, theme 4 – Formalisation, theme 5- Financial Inclusion, theme 6 – Social protection, and theme 7 – Devolution, and they contribute very much in this context of COVID-19, beyond COVID-19 towards 2030 Agenda


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