Concern has been raised over the conditions of service for frontline security personnel who are manning checkpoints to ensure compliance with Covid-19 lockdown regulations.
By Shelton Muchena
A survey conducted by this publication observed that at almost all road blocks around the country there are no toilet facilities, tents and other necessary essential services for use by security agents.
A female police officer who spoke on condition of anonymity complained over the non-availability of toilets at roadblocks, a situation she said forces them to use nearby bushes to relieve themselves.
“As female police officers, we have a big challenge at roadblocks as we have no toilets, sometimes we need a private place to change our sanitary pads and this becomes so difficult to do so at the roadblock,” the female officer said.
The situation has been further compounded is the current wet spell which forces security personnel to hide under tree sheds in the process allowing motorists to move around without papers.
Efforts to get a comment from the Ministry of Health and Child Care on measures being put in place to improve hygiene at checkpoints, were fruitless at the time of publishing.
Recently, government announced plans to deploy health workers at roadblocks to screen people passing through the checkpoints in a move that is likely to increase population of officials enforcing compliance.
“We have agreed that law enforcement should be combined with awareness and also screening. There will be some points where we will actually send doctors to screen people in a car to find out if people are clean and clear in terms of the disease, not only papers,” said deputy chairperson of the Ad-Hoc Inter-Ministerial Taskforce on Covid-19, Professor Amon Murwira.