The public has been urged to maintain high standards of hygiene throughout the festive season to avoid disease outbreaks.

The advice comes as the cholera battle is not yet over.

Bulawayo City Council Environmental Health Assistant Director, Mr Charles Malaba urged churches and other gatherings to use proper venues with potable water and sanitary facilities than occupying open spaces.

“As people gather, they should ensure good hygienic standards and should gather where there is potable water and proper sanitary facilities so that they don’t contract and spread diseases. Food should be properly prepared and ate while hot,” he said.

As people from all corners of the world will meet after a long time of separation, Mr Malaba also urged them to minimise handshakes and physical contact whenever possible.

“Once you notice or experience vomiting and diarrhoea, don’t self diagnose but rush for medical attention because the longer one takes to seek professional help, it becomes more dangerous,” said Mr Malaba.

The country has been afflicted by sporadic cholera outbreaks which makes good hygiene an everyday requirement.