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MDC-T congress was a coronavirus super spreader event – Analyst

By Nyashadzashe Ndoro | Nehanda Politics |

One of the MDC’s founding leaders, Cephas Makuyana who attended the recently held MDC-T extraordinary congress (EOC) succumbed to Covid-19 while a number of senior party officials are suspected to have contracted the deadly disease from the super spreader event.

The late Cephas Makuyana was a campaign manager for Douglas Mwonzora at the congress in December
The late Cephas Makuyana (centre) was a campaign manager for Douglas Mwonzora at the congress in December

The veteran MDC politician and trade unionist died on Saturday. Makuyana was the founding MDC Harare Province Chairperson and Master of Ceremony at the launch of the MDC at Rufaro Stadium.

At the congress in December last year, there was a bizarre moment when former interim MDC-T president Thokozani Khupe used her mask as a handkerchief to wipe her nose before wearing it again. She is currently in a hospital after testing positive for coronavirus.

After the congress, analysts had urged everyone who attended the congress at the Harare International Conference Centre (HICC) to go for self isolation since Khupe had tested positive.

Sanderson Makombe, one of the survivors of State sponsored brutality which claimed the lives of two MDC activists, Tichaona Chiminya and Talent Mabika who were murdered by CIO operative Joseph Mwale on the 15th April 2000, had urged MDC-T members to go for self isolation.

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Commenting on social media, he, however, expressed worry at the death of Makuyana whom he regarded as one of the founding leaders of the opposition movement.

“All those who were in contact with Khupe at EOC should have been in 14 day isolation from the day she revealed she tested positive for Covid -19. Don’t they say the viral symptoms take up to 21 days to start showing in some cases?

“Right you should probably be coming out of self isolation..but hey, even Dougie has continued to meet the public, hold press conferences, been to radio shows etc, fully knowing he was in contact with Khupe, unguarded, for a very long time.

“They should also have gone for testing. Since muri vanhu ve mutemo, surely you know about WHO guidelines, no?” Makombe said soon after Khupe tested positive.”

On the death of Makuyana on Saturday Makombe added, “Senator Makuyana.We came a long way. Ndo madhara who mentored us in the early days of the MDC. Lost his life to Covid-19 today.

“When Khupe held her party’s EOC, on various platforms I expressed how I was appalled by the lack of effort to mitigate Covid. Masks were worn below the chin.No social distancing.

“Even Mudzuri could be seen remonstrating with Mwonzora who was basically shouting and spitting in his face, uncovered. Khupe was all over the show.Khupe tested positive the following day. Did all those who were in contact with her got tested? Did they isolate?

“RIP mudhara Makuyana. The stories are for another day…” Nehanda Radio