Cabinet yesterday recommended Presidential Regulations imposing a moratorium on evictions of tenants delaying rent payments during the lockdown and staying legal action against their landlords delaying mortgage instalments as a result.
Presenting the outcome of the 13th Cabinet meeting in Harare yesterday, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvangwa said: “Further measures taken include the following, that His Excellency the President consider promulgation of Presidential Regulations to give relief to both tenants and landlords during the lockdown period.
“That both residential and commercial properties be afforded a moratorium on evictions in respect of applicable lease obligations due for the period from April to the end of the lockdown including payment of rentals due for those months.”
“Rent deferrals should be free of any interest or penalties of whatever nature,” continued the recommendation. Home owners and landlords who, as a result of delayed rent, had to delay repayments of mortgage obligations would be entitled to the same relief under the same conditions.
Other measures adopted by Cabinet as part of the Covid-19 preparedness response included testing security personnel and their families, all medical staff and patients at all central hospitals, all returning residents from abroad in designated mandatory quarantine facilities, and all contacts of confirmed cases regardless of whether they showed symptoms.
All in the community around a cluster of cases had to be tested as well as and immigration officials at Robert Gabriel Mugabe, Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo and Victoria Falls international airports plus those at Beitbridge and Forbes border posts.
Minister Mutsvangwa said Cabinet approved the disbursement of $100 million by Treasury towards buying all available local stock of personal protective equipment (PPE).
Transport and Infrastructural Development Minister Joel Biggie Matiza should now identify strategic truck stops along the country’s regional corridors to be gazetted as SADC Transit Truck Stops for use by regional transit traffic when trucks cross Zimbabwe during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Minister Mutsvangwa said Cabinet approved the setting up of isolation facilities at Rowa Training Centre for those entering Zimbabwe through Forbes Border Post and at Vhuti High School for those entering through Kariba and Chirundu border posts.
Cabinet approved the drilling of 13 boreholes at priority centres identified by the Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, including one at Wilkins Hospital and two at Beatrice Road Infectious Diseases Hospital in Harare.
Disbursement by Treasury of $667 million of the budgeted $758 million towards the fight against Covid-19 was also approved.
Minister Mutsvangwa said several ministers presented progress reports on the 100-day priority projects.