Typhoid eruption gives Zimbabwe a health scare

Typhoid outbreak in Harare a cause for concern. File photo

Typhoid outbreak in Harare a cause for concern. File photo

from MARCUS MUSHONGA in Harare, Zimbabwe
HARARE, (CAJ News) ZIMBABWEAN civil society organisations have accused the government of violating citizens’ rights following the outbreak of typhoid affecting hundreds of people.

More than 800 cases of the water borne disease have been recorded this year in some high density areas of the capital city, Harare.

The Zimbabwe Lawyers for Human Rights (ZLHR) and Community Water Alliance (CWA) expressed dismay.

“ZLHR and CWA are appalled that in 2019, we continue to record outbreaks of cases of typhoid, a medieval water-borne disease that is largely preventable,” they stated jointly.

“This is an indictment on local and central government and exposes gross negligence on the part of the state that continues to dismally fail to fulfill constitutional obligations.”

The organisations argued the prevailing situation in the suburbs of Glenview and Budiriro was an infringement to citizens’ fundamental rights to health care, right to clean, safe and potable water as well as dignity.

CWA and ZLHR reported that over the years, they had repeatedly highlighted the key drivers of the outbreak of typhoid and other waterborne diseases to government.

Causes include the erratic supplies of clean water in most urban communities, supply of contaminated water and failure to attend to the leaking of raw sewage into the environment.

The typhoid outbreak is the latest test to Zimbabwe’s struggling health sector.

In March, the country embarked on a first typhoid vaccination campaign in Africa.

Then, 17 people had been reported dead.

– CAJ News

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