President Mnangagwa calls for improved sanitation amid cholera outbreak

Grenade caused blast at rally on June 23 – President Mnangagwa
United Bank for Africa

President Emmerson Mnangagwa of Zimbabwe on Thursday urged the Harare city council and other local authorities to work on improving sanitation to prevent water-borne diseases.

The president spoke as a cholera outbreak in the capital Harare has so far killed 25 people and infected more than 3,000 others.

The president said the government was mobilizing resources to contain the disease and urged the private sector to chip in with financial and material support to fight the epidemic.

“What is more important is for the councils to make sure that sanitation in their area is up to date and that water is clean.

“That is a responsibility which the municipalities must make sure is taken care of,” the president said.

Mnangagwa reassured the nation that the health and well being of citizens will remain a priority under his administration.

Government has since declared the cholera outbreak a state of emergency while police have banned public gatherings in the capital to contain the disease.

The outbreak is confined in Harare’s high density suburbs of Glen View and Budiriro but isolated cases stemming from the two suburbs have also been reported in other parts of the country.

The Harare outbreak has been caused by burst sewers that contaminated borehole water used by the residents.

Some residents in Harare rely on water from community boreholes and open wells due to intermittent potable water supplies from the council.

The worst cholera outbreak in the country in 2008 killed 4,000 people.