21-day quarantine for Ebola suspects

Dr Parirenyatwa

Dr Parirenyatwa

Zvamaida Murwira Senior Reporter
People who travel to Zimbabwe from countries that have been affected by the Ebola virus will be quarantined for 21 days, while prophets who claim to cure HIV and Aids, diabetes and cancer risk being arrested for urging patients to stop taking medication, the Senate heard yesterday.

Health and Child Care Minister Dr David Parirenyatwa said one measure to prevent Zimbabwe from being affected by the deadly Ebola disease was to isolate people coming from such areas, including Zimbabweans, to allow for adequate monitoring and to determine whether or not they had symptoms.

Dr Parirenyatwa said this while responding to a question from Mashonaland East chief Musarurwa who sought to know what Government was doing to contain the disease.

“We implore our people to stop travelling to those countries, we know Zimbabweans love travelling a lot.

“Those who come from those countries we are going to separate them and screen them for some time because Ebola’s incubation period is 21 days,” said Minister Parirenyatwa.

Minister Parirenyatwa said Government was concerned with reports that some prophets were claiming that they could cure HIV and AIDS, Diabetes and cancer.

He warned people suffering from these ailments against discontinuing their medication.

Mashonaland Central Senator Alice Chimbudzi (Zanu-PF) wanted to know what Government was doing with those prophets who made such “dangerous” claims.

“It is bad that prophets and other church leaders claim that they can treat HIV/AIDS with their water. The virus cannot be removed by water but should be treated although it cannot be cured. I will talk with Minister of Home Affairs (Kembo) Mohadi to arrest those people,” said Minister Parirenyatwa.

“People should continue taking their tablets while they are receiving prayers.”

On another matter, Justice, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Emmerson Mnangagwa, said the President Mugabe would not come to Parliament to field questions as Cabinet Ministers taking them were adequately prepared to represent the Head of State and Government.

Minister Mnangagwa was responding to a question from Bulawayo Metropolitan Senator Agnes Sibanda (MDC-T) who wanted to know if there was no legal requirement for the President to periodically come and respond to questions.

Minister Mnangagwa said they had removed that policy, which used to be there and the President would only come to officially open Parliament and make a state of the nation address as and when he deems it necessary.

“Munoda kuti President vauye muno vazobvumburudzwa nemaMP. If you are anxious to do that you should grill us here Ministers, we will adequately respond,” said Minister Mnangagwa.

Meanwhile, Senate President, Cde Edna Madzongwe, yesterday commended Cabinet Ministers and their deputies for attending yesterday’s question and answer session.

Three weeks ago Cde Madzongwe and Speaker of the National Assembly, Cde Jacob Mudenda, warned Cabinet Ministers to attend parliament to field questions saying if they failed they risked being charged for contempt of Parliament.

“I still want to appeal to the Ministers to respond to motions because some of them are related to issues in their ministries,” said Cde Madzongwe.

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  • mpengo

    Good move on prophets. They put the lives of people at risk.

    They can get away with AIDS but for a deadly disease, with no treatment, like Ebola, careless prophets MUST BE JAILED

  • Softkwiti Gweks

    How can u quarantine everyone for 21 days do they have the resources, if the plane is carrying 100 per day from west africa do u have where to house them and feed them to monitor just quarantine those with symptoms period

  • sandile

    Zimbabwe muchenjere kuisa focus pane zvinhu zvisina basa muchisiya vanhu vachifa. Taneta nekunzwa zvekuti maProphets and Pastors vazoti zvakati. Siyanai navo imi mune unjere nezivo mochiita ka zvinoitwa kubatsira nyika. Ebola ichapedza vanhu muchiswera muchitaura zveMaporofita.

  • Chatambudza

    Since Zimbabwe lacks the required competent laboratory facilities to test for Ebola samples, necessitating sending specimens to a South African laboratory for testing, perhaps Dr David Parirenyatwa could at least give a turnaround time for results from SA to clear suspects before the 21-day quarantine period?

  • sheldon

    No medicine in zimbabwe, neither is there technology to detect the various ailments that claim lives and yet the medical fraternity does not want to admit failure and allow the morden, rational prophets like prophet makandiwa(who work with doctors in his church) to help the society from the various sicknesses that doctors have failed.

  • Pela

    My one and true suggestion is that those responsible officials in the Ministry of Health must go to Prophet Emmanuel Makandiwa’s church with their own patients (in order to rule out doubt) with any sort of ailment, have them anointed with the oil and check for results. Regai kuera nyoka negavi iyo iripo.

  • Jotham

    The 21 Days are not enough – we need 3 months incarceration of those who would have gone to West Africa to spend 90 days in detention. We can’t afford the luxury of risking Zimbabwean lives.

    • Susan Pyer

      I think thats unnecessary extremism…

      • Jotham

        We need to be protected from importers of the disease. I hope you know the implications once the disease has arrived.

  • Susan Pyer

    How do they intend to quarantine these people, in individual cubics or in one large facility where they risk spreading the disease to non infected persons should there be one infected among the quarantined?