Posted on Leave a comment

Making Sense of Zimbabwe Lockdown 2021

Big Sky #Zimbabwe Lockdown 2021

As the mud clears after clarifications and final statements have been issued by ZRP and the various Ministry’s, Big Sky attempts to make sense of Zimbabwe Lockdown 2021. We originally published on the issue in April 2020 (https://bigsky.co.zw/update-covid19-national-lockdown-legislation/ ) and given the numerous amendments to the Public Health statutory instruments since, we offer our views on Zimbabwe Lockdown 2021.

TRAVEL BY ESSENTIAL SERVICES WORKERS

As before, workers in the Essential Services sector are to carry copies of the Lockdown Exemption Letter issued to their company/organisation, and a letter on the company/organisation’s letterhead:

Lockdown Exemption Letter:

According to the “Final Revised Ministry Statement, 4 January 2021”: “Companies in the manufacturing, distribution, wholesale, retail, commerce, tourism and hospitality industry are advised to make use of the Lockdown Exemption letters previously issued by Ministries of Industry and Commerce and Environment, Tourism and Hospitality Industry for the next seven (7) working days, during which companies should renew their exemption letters.”

And: “Regarding the Tourism and Hospitality industry, Agriculture and Mining the companies in these sectors should get their Exemption letters from their respective parent Ministries.”

The press statement issued by ZRP on 4 January 2021, states: “Movement and exemption letters will now be issued by the Ministry of Industry and Commerce”

This implies that “Do It Yourself” letters/affidavits stamped by ZRP will not be accepted at the checkpoints, and only a Ministry issued letter will be accepted. Given the massive pressure and (unhealthy) congestion at the Ministry of Industry and Commerce offices, we expect other entities to approach their respective ministries, including Tourism, Agriculture, etc. (Also see Notes, below).

Employer’s Letter:

According to the “Final Revised Ministry Statement, 4 January 2021”, the employers’ letter should include:

  • Employee name and ID number
  • The points of commute
  • Company line of business/products and state how that is covered by the Statutory Instruments
  • Working hours, and shifts where necessary
  • The letter should be signed by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or Managing Director (MD)

The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI) in another of their very useful updates, published a suggested template for the employer’s letter. (For a copy of this CZI update, email sean@bigsky.co.zw).

INTER-CITY TRAVEL DURING ZIMBABWE LOCKDOWN 2021

Inter-city travel during Zimbabwe Lockdown 2021 is still restricted. ZUPCO remains the sole authorised public transporter. Members of the public can still only travel on essential service and must carry documentation or similar proving the purpose of the trip. Where practical, we recommend not more than one person in a vehicle, to avoid the appearance of ‘holidaying’. If more than one passenger is travelling, all must be carrying ‘letters’.

Checkpoints typically accept up to 4 passengers in a vehicle with both front and rear seats, and 2 passengers in a pick-up/truck with front seats only. Every occupant of the vehicle must wear a mask.

HOLIDAY AND RECREATIONAL TRAVEL

The Health Minister’s public announcement on 2 January, 2021, said, “Tourist facilities and national parks will operate as before subject to the usual health precautions”. Given the Health Minister’s ruling it is a given that tourists must travel to their holiday destination, and the great majority will travel by road.

However, the continued operation of the “tourist facilities and national parks” is not explicitly provided for in SI 10/2021. We therefore advise domestic tourists travelling by road to carry copies of your accommodation bookings AND a copy of the Health Minister’s “Lockdown Statement, 2 January, 2021”. (For a copy, email sean@bigsky.co.zw).

AIRPORT DROP-OFF’S AND COLLECTIONS

Travelling to the airport, carry a hardcopy of the passenger’s air ticket. On the return journey, present the passenger’s passport and boarding pass. This also provides for airport trips during curfew hours. As the source you can quote Public Relations – Civil Aviation Authority.

TRAVEL BY DOMESTIC STAFF

Once again there is no reference in any Statutory Instrument, ZRP or ministerial statement to travel by domestic staff or any persons employed by a “non-commercial entity”. As previous, we recommend employers prepare a letter based on the formal employer’s letter (see above), supported by an affidavit stating the purpose of the travel and stamped at your local police station.

NOTES

There is no reference in SI 10/2020 making it a requirement for motorists to carry letters stamped by ZRP. Based on inter-city travel during the 2020 lockdown periods, provided the motorists’ documents were in order, ZRP stamped letters were neither requested nor expected. However, given the pressure on the various ministries, we understand employers and travellers are approaching police stations with a letter and supporting affidavit, and being assisted.

Under no circumstances should you pay for either Exemption Letters or police stamps.

These notes are provided for guidance only and should be read with the Public Health Order (COVID-19) and subsequent amendments. We welcome any feedback, kindly email sean@bigsky.co.zw.

ZRP CONTACT NUMBERS

To report cases of harassment and attempts to solicit bribes at lockdown checkpoints or at police station level, contact:

ZRP Police General Head Quarters – Internal Investigations. 2005 Fife Avenue, corner Enterprise Road, Harare: (0242) 702083 / 707702 (Office hours only. After office hours call PGHQ, number below).

ZRP Police General Head Quarters, Harare: (0242) 703631 (24-hour)

 – PGHQ, Harare Anti-Corruption members will take calls from all over the country, referring you to the most appropriate personnel in your area, where necessary. Senior members of the Zimbabwe National Army are coordinating anti-corruption efforts with their counterparts in PGHQ.

ZRP Provincial Operations, Matabeleland: (0292) 885479 (24-hour)

ZRP Provincial Public Relations: (0292) 260358 (Office hours) – Contact for assistance with incidents throughout Matabeleland

Thank you,

#stayathomestaysafe

Sean Q. and the BIG SKY TEAM

Acknowledgments:
Howard Dean, publisher of BIZ Bulletin and Labour Relations Information Service. Subscription inquiries to aquamor@mweb.co.zw

The Confederation of Zimbabwe Industries (CZI). (024) 2251496

Optima Legal (Pvt) Ltd. Visit www.optimalegal.co.zw

To download copies of all COVID-19 statutory instruments and amendments, visit https://www.veritaszim.net/node/4120

Published 06 January 2021

Posted on

Mozambique Travel During COVID-19 (December, 2020)

Mozambique Travel update during COVID-19

We’ve all missed Mozambique travel during COVID-19 restrictions. At the time of writing, COVID-19 regulations and congestion are complicating the journey but Mozambique is a beautiful country, and once through the Forbes/Machipanda chaos, the border hassles will have been worth it. We trust these notes will prepare you for Mozambique travel during COVID-19 …

Mozambique COVID-19 Travel Regulations (at the time of writing):


A visitor may enter Mozambique with a PCR test certificate issued within 96 hours*. From the time the sample has been collected, travelers have 96 hours for the first border crossing. (*Extended from 72 hours and became effective on Saturday, 19 December). The regulations listed on the Facebook/DriveZim group state that if the visitor returns within 14 days, another COVD-19 test is not required. Regardless, arrange to have a PCR test in Mozambique, within 48 hours of issue, for re-entry into Zimbabwe (all ages).

Make sure you have your Yellow Fever Card if you have traveled to central or eastern Africa in the last 12 months.

A short overview of the documents to carry:
Passport, police clearance certificate, vehicle and trailer registration papers, and insurance certificate. If compliant in Zimbabwe, your vehicle will display the licence and insurance discs, and Third Plate.

Remember the SDC requirements for minors, who require specific documents when crossing borders. For more on this, http://www.dha.gov.za/index.php/statements-speeches/621-advisory-new-requirements-for-children-travelling-through-south-african-ports-of-entry-effective-1-june-2015

At the time of writing, fuel is cheaper in Mozambique and readily available.

Road conditions (Inchope to Vilanculos)

Once you turn towards Vilanculos at Inchope there are some bad potholes for approximately 50km but from then onwards the roads have been repaired or resurfaced all the way, making for a far more pleasant drive.

Curfew regulations (Inchope to Save Bridge)


With the ongoing Renamo/Frelimo tensions, a curfew has been imposed. 
The section between Inchope and Save Bridge is under a 19:00 to 07:00 curfew. The road only opens at 07:00 and the last car is allowed to enter either side at 15:30. In mid-December, 2020, a traveler reported 28 military and 4 police checkpoints.

A case of Cokes or frozen bottles of water will be appreciated and ensure that delays at the checkpoints will be kept to a minimum.

Vehicle equipment requirements for your Mozambique travel during COVID-19


We are often asked what the vehicle equipment requirements are for Mozambique. If your vehicle is compliant with Zimbabwe’s statutory requirements, you are well covered.

But unique to Mozambique are the following vehicle equipment requirements

  • If towing, you must display Mozambique yellow on blue triangles, which are available from Big Sky. The large decal is to be placed on the right-hand side at the rear of the trailer, and the small decal on the right front of the towing vehicle. Be aware these triangles are required ONLY if you’re towing …
  • We also recommend you carry a reflective vest for each occupant in the vehicle.

For your peace of mind, we recommend the following as essential equipment:

  • A good map. Big Sky stocks the Mozambique/Malawi InfoMap with GPS coordinates and points of interest.
  • You’ll want to drop your tire pressures when off the tar. This will improve your ride over corrugated gravel roads, and significantly reduce the chances of getting stuck in soft sand. An air compressor is essential for reflating tires before driving at high speeds. Big Sky stocks the T-Max 72 litre compressor which will inflate your 4×4’s tires faster than you’ll finish your Coke.
  • A decent tow strap will come in handy when you are a good Samaritan and recover a stuck vehicle …
  • Consider fitting a long-range fuel tank and avoid the hassle of jerry cans at the border and the roadside. Big Sky is supplying quality, auxiliary fuel tanks for a wide range of vehicles, including the Ford Ranger, Isuzu (6th generation), Toyota Hilux (Vigo and Revo), Landcruiser (75, 79, 80, 100 and 200 Series), Fortuner; and Nissan Hardbody and Navara, and VW Amarok. For more, visit https://bigsky.co.zw/tales-trails/ 
  • To check availability and price for your vehicle, email sean@bigsky.co.zw or call/WhatsApp on 0772-420-517    

Finally, you could be driving in isolated areas. Check the road worthiness of your vehicle, tyre condition, including the spare wheel, etc..

Take it easy and enjoy the drive, it is not only the destination that is beautiful. Wishing you a safe and hassle-free journey,

Obrigado,

The Big Sky Team

Published: 16 December, 2020

Other resources:
Facebook/Zimvine post 14 December, 2020 https://bit.ly/3nuzcaF
Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/DriveMoz