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Cholera vaccination set to begin on the 29th of January

Cholera vaccination set to begin on the 29th of January

Story by Wellington Makonese

THE government is set to roll out a cholera vaccination programme, beginning with hotspots as part of measures to contain the epidemic.

Government ministries held a media briefing in Harare this Wednesday on the prevailing situation concerning the cholera outbreak and the provision of water in Harare.

In light of the cholera situation, Health and Child Care Minister Dr Douglas Mombeshora revealed that a cholera vaccination programme will be rolled out on the 29th of this month, beginning with hotspots.

“About 2.3 million cholera vaccines have been discussed for the country but we have close to 900 thousand delivered and we will be rolling them out on the 29th, the World Health Organisation controls distribution that’s why we have those but we will start with the cholera hotspots,” he said.

Turning to the water situation in urban areas, the government revealed that funds will be availed for short-term measures.

“We intend to increase water supply so the government has given US$1.6 million for chemicals as a stop-gap measure, but we need an additional US$13 million for the upkeep of water works, two additional water sources are being looked at and then completion of Kunzvi by 2026-27,” said the Minister of Lands, Agriculture, Fisheries, Water and Rural Development, Dr Anxious Masuka.

The government is keen on placing stop-gap measures to rescue the situation arising from failures by local authorities.

“Let’s not take away the fact that residents pay for refuse collection, water and sewer reticulation to an authority which should be offering services. The government has since stepped in that’s why they have operations such Chenesa Harare, Borehole sinking programmes,” said Minister of Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services, Dr Jenfan Muswere.

Since the first suspected cholera case was reported in February last year, over 20 thousand cumulative suspected cases have been recorded, with the government establishing around 153 treatment centres.

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