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Zimbabwe’s Reserve Bank allows citizens to use a dollar to deal with COVID-19 pandemic

The Reserve Bank of Zimbabwe on Thursday said it would allow Zimbabweans to use foreign currencies as part of measures to deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

The announcement followed after President Emmerson Mnagangwa announced a 21-day lockdown to curb the spread of the virus.

According to Zimbabwe’s Health Ministry, there are eight confirmed cases of coronavirus with only one death reported.

Zimbabwe legalised the use of foreign currencies in domestic transactions on Sunday, less than a year after abandoning dollarization.

On Sunday, Zimbabwe published new exchange control regulations making it legal for Zimbabweans to use electronic and cash foreign currencies when buying local goods.

“Any person may pay for goods and services chargeable in Zimbabwe dollars in foreign currency … at the ruling rate on the date of payment,” a government notice said according to Reuters reports.

Zimbabwe is among several countries on the continent that have initiated a total lockdown, with the latest being Nigeria and Uganda.

Uganda entered into lockdown on Monday night where President Yoweri Museveni announced stringent measures that will see all malls closed for 14 days.

Movement of all public and private vehicles were also banned in Uganda to prevent the spread of the virus into villages, according to President Museveni.

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Digital Desk, Metropol TV

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