More than 1 200 people have now been infected by Covid-19 in Harare, the new Zimbabwean epicentre, after the dramatic jump in confirmed infections this weekend.
Zimbabwe now has 3 921 confirmed cases after its worst two days on record, although with only three extra deaths over the weekend, the death toll crept up to 70.
Figures from the Ministry of Health and Child Care show that a record 490 new confirmed cases were recorded for the whole of Zimbabwe on Saturday and 262 yesterday, but of the weekend total of 752 new cases there were 719 people infected inside Zimbabwe and a relatively small 33 were among returning residents in formal quarantine.
Out of those 719 local infections, 437 were in Harare taking the total of those infected within the city and most of its satellite towns to 1 227.
Bulawayo, once the main focus of internal infection, now has 897 confirmed local cases after 99 new infections over the weekend. However, two of the three weekend deaths were in Bulawayo health institutions, a 62-year-old man and 52-year-old woman.
The third death was a 93-year-old woman in Midlands who was admitted to hospital on July 23 and died early yesterday morning.
After the high levels of infection in the two largest cities, Midlands is the third worst hit province with 237 local infections, with Gweru previously identified as the main centre of infection in the province.
Mashonaland East, which includes some satellite towns of Harare, has 157 local infections with Manicaland now rising past the century mark to 101.
Out of the 70 deaths, 31 have been recorded in Harare, 20 in Bulawayo, six in Manicaland and five in Midlands.
Recoveries now total 1 016, but the very low total for Harare suggests that there is a batch of recovered patients whose status still has to enter the statistics.
South Africa remains the fifth worst hit country in the world with 8 153 deaths and 503 290 confirmed cases. This means South Africa has recorded 1.12 percent of the total global death toll of 685 179 and 2.8 percent of the total world cases of 17 859 763.
On a more hopeful note, 342 461 of sick South Africans are counted as recovered.