By Jorge Joaquim
Mozambican President Filipe Nyusi announced the introduction of another state of emergency cycle starting on August 8, nationwide, for 30 days, saying that data from the health authorities indicate that the covid-19 epidemic is rapidly worsening, with an increase in the number of deaths and hospitalized patients.
Nyusi also outlined plans for a phased easing of restrictions in place to prevent the spread of the coronavirus disease. The three-phase plan will begin on August 18, when activities deemed low risk can resume. These include the resumption of face-to-face classes in universities, higher education institutions, military academies, teacher training, and at technical, professional, and health institutes. Religious services may also resume, with congregations of no more than 50 people. Up to 50 people will be able to attend funerals, up from the current limit of 20, with exceptions for the funeral of those who have died of covid-19, where the maximum attendance will remain at ten.
The second phase is scheduled to begin on September 1, and will allow for the resumption of activities deemed medium risk. This includes the reopening of cinemas, casinos, and gyms.
The third phase covers activities deemed high risk and is set to begin on October 30. Measures included in this phase include the resumption of face-to-face classes for final year secondary school pupils.
All other current measures remain in place until further notice, including social distancing and the use of face masks in public. Bars remain closed indefinitely.
All other activities that have not been announced will be subject to regulation by a decree to be issued by the Council of Ministers, Nyusi said.