Zimbabwe has officially reopened its national parks and allowed restaurants to serve meals within their premises, finally some relief for the country’s hospitality sector suffering from restrictions to fight the novel coronavirus.
The government’s statement came amid an uproar from the national parks and private safari lodges that the continued lockdown was damaging both conservation efforts and businesses.
Restaurants will be allowed to serve food to sit-in customers, but only with limited numbers.
“We desperately needed to open,” said Tinashe Farawo, spokesman for the Zimbabwe Parks and Wildlife Management Authority.
Zimbabwe’s parks agency largely relies on tourism for income, and has been pushing to be allowed to sell animals such as elephants without “undue restrictions” to foreign zoos to raise money for conservation.