OPPOSITION Zimbabwe People First (ZimPF) has called government to consider a ban on the sale of alcohol in the country during the COVID-19-induced lockdown in order to reduce cases of alcohol-related domestic violence.
Government had relaxed the sale of alcohol in supermarkets and other outlets.
In a letter addressed to Information minister Monica Mutsvangwa, ZimPF national spokesperson Stephen Mazanza asked the government to ban the sale of alcohol in the country, in particular cane spirits.
“It will lead to lower rates of drinking among men and reduce alcohol-related domestic violence cases,” Mazanza wrote.
“ZimPF suspects that more than 60% of all spirits being consumed in Zimbabwe are being produced by dangerous mafia groups masquerading as legitimate companies and Zimbabwe is sitting on a time bomb from these unregistered companies.”
He also said alcohol and tobacco cigarettes affected the immune system and increased the risk of infection.
“Therefore, government should temporarily (ban) consumption of alcohol at any time and particularly during this COVID-19 pandemic.
“Alcohol is a psychoactive substance that is associated with mental disorders, people at risk or who have an alcohol use disorder are particularly vulnerable, especially when in self-isolation,” he said.
Mazanza said his party was proposing that government should introduce a mandatory three days a week family exercise regime in order to maintain physical resilience.
“Our body’s response to COVID-19 is through immune system. The immune system ranges from physical barriers such as integrity of our skin to our antibodies that adapt to and fight off infections,” he said.
He also urged government to introduce aerobics sessions on national television.