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‘Unconstitutional, discriminatory to force vaccination as precondition for attending church: Biti

By Nyashadzashe Ndoro | Nehanda Politics |

MDC Alliance vice president Tendai Biti has told the government that it is unconstitutional and discriminatory to allow only congregants fully-vaccinated against Covid-19 to physically attend churches.

Main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) vice president and legislator Tendai Biti
Main opposition Movement for Democratic Change (MDC) vice president and legislator Tendai Biti

Addressing journalists at a post cabinet briefing held in Harare on Wednesday, Information minister Monica Mutsvangwa said the government had given the go-ahead to churches for resumption of physical services subject to adherence to the Ministry of Health and Child Care and World Health Organisation (WHO) protocols.

She added that fully vaccinated congregants were the ones allowed to attend the church services.

“Cabinet wishes to inform the public that churches can now allow sit-in congregants under the following conditions: only congregants who have received two doses of the vaccine are allowed to attend, all Ministry of Health and Child Care and WHO protocols are adhered to,” Mutsvangwa said.

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But Biti castigated the government for the move saying that it was discriminatory and unconstitutional to force vaccination.

“Whilst we unreservedly support the vaccination agenda , it is unconstitutional ,unlawful, discriminatory and hypocritical to require vaccination as a precondition to enjoyment of the right to worship. Only masking and social distancing should be a requirement,” Biti posted on his microblogging Twitter handle.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa extended the level four Covid-19 lockdown on Monday by another two weeks, public gatherings remain banned save for funerals, which are limited to not more than 30 people.

As of Wednesday night, the Health Ministry said the country had 117 954 confirmed cases, including 93 502 recoveries and 3 991 deaths.

To date, a total of 1 933 220 people have been vaccinated against Covid-19. Nehanda Radio