A court order has finally allowed unvaccinated congregants to attend church services and stopped the police from arresting attendances who would not have received the COVID-19 jab.
The government had ordered had directed the country’s police force to arrest unvaccinated people attending church services as well as leaders who allow the unjabbed to attend services.
But a court order seen by Enthuse Magazine called the government ban unconstitutional.
“The statement issued… on the 11th of August 2021 on behalf of Government following a Cabinet meeting on the compulsory Covid-19 vaccination of sit-in congregants in Churches and barring unvaccinated sit-in congregants from churches null and void to the extent that infringes constitutional rights and freedoms set out in the Declaration of rights under sections 51, 52, 56, 58 and 60.” the court order reads.
“… any purported ban on unvaccinated sit-in congregants in Churches and any arrests or criminal proceedings of unvaccinated sit-in congregants of churches enforced… are unlawful, null and void and of no force or effect and are st aside.”
The court order follows an application by Obert Kondongwe, founder of Lawyers for Truth, Health, Justice, and Freedom, lodged the application at the High Court in Harare seeking the nullification of the government ban on unjabbed worshippers from attending sit-in sermons.
Kondongwe’s argument was that the directive to ban unvaccinated congregants from attending churches services was not only dicriminatory but illegal and unconstitutional.
“There is no law currently in Zimbabwe which makes vaccination mandatory. Concomitantly, there is no criminal law which penalises church gatherings of unvaccinated congregants,” Kondongwe had argued.
“It is trite that each person, having fully considered the implications and effects of vaccination, is expected to make a personal decision on whether or not to get vaccinated, and even to make a personal decision regarding the timing of such vaccination.”
Zimbabwean authorities have not only barred unvaccinated citizens from attending Church services but also from eating in restaurants.
The country’s leaders have also promised more stringent measures for the unvaccinated citizens especially government workers.