Week 13

Wekelijkse selectie van nieuws uit Zimbabwe

Byo turns to boreholes as water woes worsen

Bulawayo Provincial Affairs and Devolution Minister, Judith Ncube, has encouraged the Bulawayo City Council (BCC) to collaborate with the District Development Fund (DDF) to drill and fix malfunctioning boreholes to augment water supplies to the city.   

The city has over 300 boreholes, but the majority of them need to be repaired, and new ones are needed particularly in the eastern suburbs, says BCC. 

BCC has also projected that it will decommission two of Bulawayo’s supply dams -Lower Ncema and Umzingwane in July and August respectively. 

Although the provincial affairs minister recognised that power outages are to blame for the current water issue, she stated that the city has to find other ways to provide water. 


Zim’s top rights lawyer unwavering in face of threats

LAWYER Beatrice Mtetwa cuts a short figure, but she appears fearless in her work as Zimbabwe’s best-known human rights lawyer and a thorn in the side of an authoritarian government. 

With the next presidential election expected in August, she is the go-to lawyer for many seeking justice and has represented defendants in several high profile cases against the government in recent decades. 

The 64-year-old was arrested, beaten up and jailed for eight days a few years ago after helping a client who had been raided by police, but refuses to be intimidated. 


US$4bn lost a year to illicit flows

FORMER Finance minister Tendai Biti says Zimbabwe could be losing up to US$4 billion a year through illicit financial flows, part of which involve major mining companies such as Zimplats and Unki. Speaking in Parliament this week, Biti said Zimbabwe is losing more than US$1bn to gold smuggling, US$1bn to tobacco smuggling and possibly US$2bn through lithium leakages. 


19000 households benefit from cash transfer programme

About 19 000 households from Binga, Mangwe, Rushinga, Mudzi and Makoni are set to benefit from the Emergency Social Cash Transfer (ESCT) programme that aims to strengthen the resilience of households from food insecurities. 

In a statement, Thursday, UNICEF Zimbabwe said under this new phase, the Emergency Social Cash Transfer (ESCT), which the German Government is funding through KfW will provide cash payments to five new districts while providing a further three months of continuity support to its existing urban districts. 


Healthcare workers held to ransom

The World Health Organisation’s 2023 report titled: “Health Workforce Support and Safeguards” found that some 55 countries, including Zimbabwe, now rank below the global median in terms of their density of doctors, nurses and midwives per capita. 

Countries making the list have a density of doctors, nurses and midwives below the global median of 49 per 10 000. Zimbabwe, with a health worker density of 36 per 10 000, was added to the new list made up of countries that have vulnerable health forces; together with Rwanda, Comoros and Zambia. 

The country has lost over 4 000 workers over the past two years, which includes 1 700 registered nurses who resigned in 2021 and over 900 who resigned in 2022, according to the Health Services Board quoted by Reuters. 


The Story I Cannot Tell – Cathy Buckle

In a time of instant gratification where our attention span gets shorter and shorter, everything seems limited to a two minute or less clip. Two minutes to explain why a third of our population hasn’t got enough to eat. Two minutes to expose how our once thriving country has turned into a dark hole of corruption. Two minutes to understand why we have 18 hour power cuts every day. Two minutes to describe the reality of 480% inflation. Two minutes to tell you where all the gold has gone. Two minutes to spell out why hospitals haven’t got medicines. Two minutes to comprehend why our best professionals have no choice but to flee to the Diaspora to survive and support their families. 

It takes two seconds to click here and start watching and 51 minutes to see to the end of this first of four episodes.


US dollar windfall for village heads | The Sunday Mail (state owned)

CHIEFS and village heads are set to receive lump sum payments of at least US$550 each as part of Covid-19 allowances backdated to May 2022. 

There are about 26 000 village heads countrywide, who were expected to get US$50 per month from May last year as part of the perks. 

Ministry of Local Government and Public Works’ communication and advocacy director Mr Gabriel Masvora said the payments have since been approved and will be distributed through the Salary Service Bureau. 


Water project offers lifeline for arid Chiredzi communities

For Svodai Musaingira (46) of Ward 23 in Nyangambe village 2, Chiredzi, the adage “Life is water” came to fruition the day her village got a clean water point. 

Musaingira and fellow community members had been struggling to access safe and potable water for household chores. 

Musaingira, who came into the dry and arid community of Nyangambe valley conservancy as a bride many years ago, is one of the more than 600 inhabitants who over the years have been exposed to attacks by wildlife due to the long distances they have to trek in search of safe water sources while some households had resorted to fetching water from open ponds, exposing them to water borne diseases. 


Nurses fret over global recruitment ban

UNDERPAID Zimbabwean nurses and doctors have vowed to find alternative ways to circumvent a foreign recruitment ban recently imposed by the World Health Organisation (WHO), saying they cannot bear the poor working conditions anymore. 

WHO recently red-listed Zimbabwe among 53 other nations experiencing acute shortage of health personnel, a development which prompted the United Kingdom (UK) to stop active recruitment of nurses from the southern African country. 


Minister Shava meets Lukashenko The Herald (state owned)

As Zimbabwe seeks to deepen economic collaboration with Belarus, the Government has sent a delegation to Minsk to start making concrete moves of operationalising issues that were agreed on when President Mnangagwa met Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, when he visited Harare early this year. 

Foreign Affairs and International Trade Minister Ambassador Frederick Shava, is leading the delegation, which includes agriculture experts, ZimTrade officials, and those from the Department of Civil Protection, among others. 


Zim tourism wins big in Berlin | The Sunday Mail (state owned)

ZIMBABWE tourism emerged triumphant at the just-ended International Tourism Bourse (ITB) in Berlin, Germany, securing three integral accolades in recognition of efforts that have been put in place to spur the sector’s performance. 

This is a testament to collective efforts that have been crafted by sector stakeholders to buoy tourism performance in the country, propelling it back to its old self while moving with the times. 

Zimbabwe bagged the Natural Beauty in Africa Destination of The Year Award while Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry Minister Mangaliso Ndlovu was recognised as the Best Minister of Tourism for Southern Africa. Zimbabwe Tourism Authority (ZTA) chief executive officer Winnie Muchanyuka won the Professional Destination Management Award. 


Poor infrastructure disrupts education in Mat North

Dumisani Ncube (52) says he arrived in Lupane, Matabeleland North, 15 years ago with high hopes of making a mark as a teacher. 

Ncube says one of his plans was to build a homestead as well as undertake a goat-rearing project. 

Fifteen years later, Ncube is a disappointed man: While banks, health centres, and supermarkets were far away when we first started, we were optimistic that perhaps after a few years, these amenities would be available,”  Ncube said. “However, years later, nothing has changed and the schools remain inaccessible because of poor roads.” 


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