A TOTAL of twenty-five MPs tested positive for Covid-19 in tests done last week, including nine had already tested positive four weeks ago and have been counted as recovered, the State-owned media has reported.
The Herald reports that the developments have led to MPs to worry that anti-body presence is leading to false positives.
According to the publication, Matabeleland North MP Dr Ruth Labode yesterday raised a point of privilege on Parliament’s testing and isolation policies.
“My concern is that 25 MPs tested positive and among those, there were about nine or so who had already tested positive four weeks ago and isolated,” she said.
Parliament guidelines require that MPs be tested after every two weeks and those who test positive, will immediately go into isolation for 14 days.
Dr Labode argued that some people who would have earlier tested positive will likely retain a positive result because of the presence of anti-bodies in their systems even though they were no longer infected or infectious and she argued that there was no need to continue isolating such people.
Dr Labode, an MDC Alliance MP (proportional representation) for Matebeleland North, is a graduate of Sofia Medical School in Bulgaria (MBChB) and also holds a Master’s Degree in Community Health (MCOMMH) from University of Liverpool UK.
She was the first female Provincial Medical Director in Zimbabwe, a position she held for 5 years and she is currently serving her second term as a Member of Parliament of Zimbabwe.
Ruth is the current SADC Chairperson of Global Caucus of Parliamentarians against tuberculosis. She is also a member of the Zimbabwe Key Population forum and substantive member of Global Fund Country Coordinating Mechanism.
Dr. Labode leads network of parliamentary champions on SRHR.
Meanwhile, Clerk of Parliament Mr Kennedy Chokuda confirmed that 25 MPs had tested positive during last week’s round of testing including those who had tested positive before.
“We have decided that all those who test positive be isolated out of abundance of caution and we will continue following up on them and assisting them,” he said.
The first two legislators to test positive were diagnosed in July and Parliament immediately suspended business for a month and only resumed sitting last week, with the testing of all MPs. – Zimbabwe Voice