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Vaccinate or resign, Zimbabwe tells government workers

A military health personnel carries an empty medical cooler box at a mobile clinic setup for COVID-19 vaccination in Emganwini township, Bulawayo, Zimbabwe   -  
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Zimbabwe has told its civil servants unwilling to get vaccinated to resign, as it seeks to increase inoculations against Covid-19.

The southern African country has already made it mandatory for people to get vaccinated to go to markets, gyms, restaurants and university exams. Some private companies have also made it mandatory for their employees to be vaccinated.

The measures have triggered indignation among some, but also clogged up the vaccination centers, as people scramble to get a dose.

"If you are employed by the government, for the protection of others and those you serve, get vaccinated," Zimbabwean Justice Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi said on local radio.

"But if you want to assert your rights" not to be vaccinated, "you can resign," he added, saying the measure would also apply to teachers.

Zimbabwe has about 300,000 civ il servants, including 100,000 teachers.

The Zimbabwe Congress of Trade Unions challenged the mandatory vaccination of employees in court in August.

4.4 million people have received a first dose in the country with 11% of the population fully vaccinated. 

Zimbabwe has recorded more than 125,600 cases of Covid, including 4,490 deaths, since the start of the pandemic.

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