Zimbabwe’s President Emmerson Mnangagwa has extended the COVID-19 nationwide lockdown.

The lockdown, which started on March 30, was meant to end on Sunday (April 19) but has been extended to May 3.

“Adjustments have been made in the manufacturing and mining sectors with support schemes for the most vulnerable families,” said Mnangagwa. “The mining sector will be able scale up operations while adhering to social distancing and other public health measures.”

Prior to the extension of the lockdown, the British Embassy in Zimbabwe encouraged tourists and business travellers to book tickets for the remaining Ethiopian Airlines flights to the United Kingdom.

“UK nationals who normally reside in the UK but are still here in Zimbabwe, please book a flight home ASAP. Get in touch with the embassy team if you haven’t already, on ukinfo.harare@fco.gov.uk,” said the Embassy on its Twitter account on April 15.

The Embassy said there was an emergency government loan that UK travellers could apply for if they could not afford the travel costs back to the UK and had exhausted all other options. “This process will be administered by Corporate Travel Management (CTM) on behalf of the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

“If you want to pursue this option you will need to provide confirmation to CTM that you agree to repay the loan within six months,” said the Embassy.

Those wishing to check their eligibility and understand more about the process should contact CTM at EMEArepatriations@travelctm.com or call +44 20 7429 9990.