Karoi prisons runs dry

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Karoi prisons have ran out of water compromising the health of prisoners.

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By Nhau Mangirazi

KAROI– Hurungwe district medical officer (DMO) Doctor Annamore Mutisi and Zimbabwe Prisons and Correctional Services Officer-in Charge raised red flag over erratic water supplies within Karoi town here.

Mutisi was presenting the health sector operations during Hurungwe district administration public meeting with provincial resident minister Mary Mliswa-Chikoka, Members of Parliament, councillors and several heads of departments last week.

She said, ‘As much as everyone is affected by the current cash crisis bedevilling the nation, we cannot hide from the reality that health has been greatly affected. We have few drugs that fail to cater for our clients as a public institution. Financial challenges cannot be ignored,’ she said.

Mutisi explained that although there have been allegations of suspected underhand dealings by senior staff including doctors who operate their private surgeries, nothing has been proven.

I am not defending my colleagues on failure by the district to avail medicine to suffering citizens, but these private operators have personal arrangements to get drugs while we need to make regular procurement procedures. There is evidence of some drugs in short supply being diverted unprofessionally. Without money our operations are hampered,’ she added.

Water Crisis

Mutisi however called on stakeholders to help in the hospital getting water as there are erratic supplies.

At times we are forced to tell patients to bring water in maternity wards during dire times when Zimbabwe National Water Authority (Zinwa) faces outrages. Without water health is compromised,’ she explained.

Her call was buttressed by ZPCS official who said they face predicament situation when water is cut off.

It is our appeal to you Minster Mliswa-Chikoka to help us get a borehole as at time we can go for several days without water. It is not healthy for both inmates and officers,’ he added.

He suggested that they must be a borehole drilled at the prison that caters for inmates around Hurungwe.

Zinwa official Kurasi Tembenuka admitted that they have faced challenges over electricity outrages affecting Karoi town.

Whenever there are power cuts our pumping system is affected to feed all residential and other institutions. This has been a challenge of late,’ he said.

Unplanned residential areas

Tembenuka took a dig at Karoi town council over its uncoordinated planning for new residential stands.

We have received reports on our failure to avail water to areas like Claudia, Kubatana among others but our main worry is why did Karoi town council approve those stands without service that include water and sewer system? The ball is the council court for failing to work closely with other stakeholders for development sake,’ he added.

Mliswa-Chikoka castigated Karoi council for failing to work with other stakeholders like Zinwa, Zesa when residential stands are availed.

Council must work with each department as the cases of cholera will affect every-one of us here. Let us work together and give each other’s role in developing Karoi and Hurungwe together. We will all be part of better standards as Hurungwe and Mashonaland West in particular,’ she said.

Karoi council chairman Abel Matsika assured the house that they will work with other stakeholders and improve the town status.

Hon Minister, let me assure you that we will improve on the concerns raised by our colleagues and work hard for the betterment of our clients. Part of our move for attaining municipality status, we held a strategic meeting where we hope to get top notch recognition in service delivery by 2020. These are grey areas we are working to improve and get the status,’ said Matsika.    

Last week meeting was a candid, frank and fruitful that Mliswa-Chikoka said was good for everyone.

‘We must be committed to be at work and let respect customers who are always kings. There must be less time of social media and let us work hard to improve service delivery,’ said Mliswa-Chikoka.