ZIMBABWE, 2 160 TYPHOID CASES, this year with authorities confirming 77 cases, seven deaths as of 18 December 2016

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Harare City Council has confirmed four cases of typhoid in Mbare, as it also emerged yesterday that 2 160 suspected cases were reported countrywide this year with authorities confirming 77 cases and seven deaths as of December 18.
 
There are also fears that the outbreak that started in 2012 due to poor water, sanitation and hygiene could have claimed more lives that could have gone unreported because the disease is not easily diagnosed.
 
Harare City Council Health Services Department said laboratory tests confirmed the presence of Salmonella typhi, a life-threatening bacterial infection that causes the disease in some of the samples from Mbare.
 
Ivy Makwara (13) died of suspected typhoid on Christmas Day.
 
Health Services director Dr Prosper Chonzi, said so far they have discovered the presence of Salmonella typhi in three samples, while another sample showed the presence of Salmonella Group D.
 
“It means that we are dealing with typhoid here because it is caused by the bacterium Salmonella typhi. Typhoid is characterised by the sudden onset of sustained fever, severe headache, nausea, abdominal pains, loss of appetite, constipation or sometimes diarrhoea,” he said.
 
“A number of people are reporting to several institutions after having typhoid like symptoms following our awareness raising initiatives and they are being treated as outpatients, but the number of suspected typhoid cases still stand at 30.”
 
He said the city was putting a lot of effort towards addressing the environmental issues that drove typhoid.
 
“Our teams are still on the ground both from the Department of Water and Department of Sanitation and health promotion teams are also in the area educating people on personal hygiene and generally good eating practices so that people do not eat food from uninspected or unlicensed premises,” he said.
 
Recent heavy rains in Harare seem to have compounded the problem as burst sewer pipes and uncollected garbage continue to pose a health hazard in most suburbs.
 
Typhoid usually occurs when water supplies serving large populations are contaminated by faecal matter.
 
Typhoid fever is then spread by contaminated food and water or close contact with an infected person. The illness can last for several weeks and even months.
 
Health and Child Care Minister Dr David Parirenyatwa, said poor water and sanitation were the major drivers of water-borne diseases.
 
Dr Parirenyatwa who toured affected areas on Wednesday, said it was important for local authorities, the Ministry of Local Government, Public Works and National Housing and that of Environment, Water and Climate to ensure water and sanitation were beyond reproach.
 
According to a Ministry of Health and Child Care weekly report ending December 18, 2016, typhoid was a major concern in various parts of the country.
 
“Twenty five new suspected typhoid cases and no deaths were reported this week (ending December 18, 2016),” reads the report.
 
“The cases were reported from Harare City (12), Mazowe district in Mashonaland Central Province (11) and Hurungwe district in Mashonaland West Province (2).
 
“The cumulative figures for typhoid are 2 159 suspected cases, 77 confirmed cases and 7 deaths.”
 
On the other hand, there were 10 suspected cases of cholera with three of them confirmed and one death reported during the same period.
 
Director in the Ministry of Health and Child Care responsible for Epidemiology and Disease Control Dr Portia Manangazira said, the statistics were a major concern to Government.
 
“To us, when it comes to typhoid and cholera, one case is an outbreak,” she said.
 
“However, the current wave is not a new outbreak of typhoid. It started in 2012, but has continued up to now because the fundamentals that must curb it have continued unaddressed, for instance lack of water and poor quality of that water when it’s available, absence of proper sanitation and personal hygiene are still with us.
 
“Those are the determinants of health, but we see sewages flowing in people’s yards and flies taking that human waste to people’s food, which results in contamination.”
 
Dr Manangazira said it was much simpler to manage water-borne diseases as long as water, sanitation and personal hygiene were in order.
 
She said there was need to avail resources for the training of more health personnel so that they gain understanding of diagnosing diseases such as typhoid so that they immediately put patients on medication.
 
Community Working Group on Health (CWGH) director, Mr Itai Rusike, said it was disheartening that some people lost lives to diseases such as typhoid and cholera, which could be treated.
 
“These are diseases that have been forgotten in some parts of the world. There are three fundamental public health concerns that must be looked at.
 
“The first one is that we need consistent supply of safe and clean drinking water, of which in Harare, people have taps in their homes, but no water.
 
“The second one is timeous collection of refuse by local authorities, in this case Harare City Council to ensure that residents are not exposed to these diseases. On that one, the City of Harare must also timeously fix burst sewer pipes because at the moment we have sewage flowing in some areas unabated.
 
“The last one is that there is need for health education and promotion on personal hygiene where they are educated about the need to boil water and use aqua tablets on tap water. There should be continuous health education particularly during the rainy season,” said Mr Rusike. Lloyd Gumbo and Innocent Ruwende —source-herald

ONLY 13 % Zimbabwean women have had cervical screening exams in a country where the disease is the leading cause of deaths in women

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ONLY 13 percent of Zimbabwean women have had a cervical screening exam in a country where the disease is the leading cause of deaths in women, statistics from the 2015 Zimbabwe Demographic Health Survey (ZDHS) show.Nationally, 79 percent of women report that they have heard of cervical screening which can detect the disease early while it is still treatable but only 13 percent have ever had a cervical exam.

“Cervical cancer screening via the Papanicolau (Pap) test or the Visual Inspection with Acetic Acid and Camera (VIAC) are effective for detecting early abnormal or cancer cells in the cervix and uterus. The Pap and VIAC tests are recommended for women from the time they become sexually active,” says the report.

“Among those who report having a cervical exam, 90 percent report having the exam in the last three years and 66 percent had their cervical exam within the last 12 months.”

The report says women in urban areas are three times more likely than their rural counterparts to report ever having a cervical exam (21 percent and seven percent, respectively).

“Women in Harare (24 percent) and Bulawayo (21 percent) have the highest percentages of women who report ever having a cervical exam, and women in Manicaland have the lowest percentage (six percent). As education and wealth increases, so does the likelihood of a woman having a cervical exam,” reads the report.

Statistics from a study carried out in 2012 by the Zimbabwe cancer registry shows that cervical cancer is the most dominant type in women with a prevalence of 32 percent.

Mrs Junior Mavhu of the Cancer Association in Zimbabwe said cervical cancer remains a prevalent disease though it is treatable.

“Cervical cancer does not present any signs and symptoms unless at an advanced stage hence the need to have women going for the exams. Its symptoms can only be detected during an exam and all women must ensure they undergo tests,” said Mrs Mavhu.

“If all women got examined early cervical cancer would not kill many women as it is doing now.  For a country like Zimbabwe, it is cheaper for us to prevent than treat cervical cancer.”

According to the National Cancer Prevention and Control Strategy for Zimbabwe 2014-2018 more than 5 000 new cancer cases are diagnosed (all types) in Zimbabwe annually.

“Experience has, however, shown us that this is just the tip of an iceberg as many cancers are not captured by the routine National Health Information System because patients do not present themselves for treatment, or some deaths are not registered.

“Of those who do report, the majority are already at an advanced stage of the disease due to limited access to screening services,” read the strategy.

The cancer treatment and palliation services are unable to meet the existing demand.

“Additionally, and despite great progress in reducing HIV prevalence in recent years, Zimbabwe remains one of the countries most heavily burdened with HIV with an adult prevalence rate of 15%. The large number of people living with HIV results in an even higher number of people who will develop cancer.”

The report says the number of people developing cancer is expected to increase due to HIV/Aids and other infections, unhealthy lifestyle choices and an ageing population.

“The majority of cancers present at an advanced stage when management is more costly and treatment outcomes are poorer. This is mainly due to lack of access to early detection (screening and diagnosis) compounded by human and material resource constraints and general lack of awareness.
Zimbabwe only has two functional public health centres offering diagnostic and treatment facilities for cancer.

Mrs Mavhu said the two institutions are Mpilo Central Hospital in Bulawayo and Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals in Harare.

“The other institution offering the same services is a private one in Newlands,” said Mrs Mavhu.

She said patients as a result incur a lot of transport, food and accommodation costs to seek services in either Bulawayo or Harare.

“Limited availability of resources, including chemotherapy medicines, opioid analgesics and cancer control skilled manpower further compromise patient care in the country,” reads the cancer strategy. Thandeka Moyo, source-Chronicle

MBERENGWA woman (30) fatally axes son (2) and launches axe attack on daughter (6) now hospitalised in critical condition

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A 30-YEAR-OLD woman from Mberengwa fatally axed her two-year-old son before turning the axe on her six- year-old daughter who was fortunate to survive the attack.
 
The girl is said to be in a critical condition at Mberengwa District Hospital.
 
Appearing before Mberengwa Magistrate Mr Sangster Tavengwa facing one count of murder and another of attempted murder was Arleta Matsukumoyo of Batanai Village, Chief Bute, Mberengwa.
 
Mr Tavengwa did not ask Matsukumoyo to plead and remanded her in custody to January 4.
 
He advised her to apply for bail at the High Court.
 
Prosecuting, Mr Stanley Ncube told the court that Matsukumoyo is the biological mother of the two children and was staying with them.
 
“On December 21 at around 9AM the accused person struck her two- year-old son in the head. She then turned the axe on her six- year-old daughter whom she again struck in the head before she fled.
 
The boy later died on admission at Mberengwa Hospital while the girl sustained a deep cut on the head and is in a critical condition,” said Mr Ncube.
 
The court heard that Matsukumoyo’s neighbours heard noises at her homestead and rushed to see what was happening.
 
Mr Ncube said the neighbours found the two children lying on the ground and rushed them to Mberengwa Hospital.
 
“The accused person should be examined as she is suspected to be mentally challenged,” said Mr Ncube. Wynne Zanamwe,source-chronicle

MAKOKOBA high-density suburb is still rated as the dirtiest in Bulawayo city

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MAKOKOBA high-density suburb is still rated as the dirtiest in Bulawayo, despite efforts by the Environmental Management Agency (EMA) to clean the suburb.

Makokoba was recently named the dirtiest and EMA promised to help in improving waste management methods.

EMA provincial manager for Bulawayo Metropolitan province, Decent Ndlovu, told journalists during a tour on Thursday that the situation in the suburb had not improved.

Ndlovu said Entumbane high-density suburb, which was at some point rated as one of the dirtiest in the city, was now one of the cleanest suburbs in Bulawayo.

“Residents from Entumbane have improved, making the area one of the cleanest in the city. The community there has shown improvement and churches, individuals and other sectors have shown support through clean-up campaigns,” he said.

“Our challenge is still with Makokoba, we urge residents to improve their waste management skills.”

Ndlovu said residents of Makokoba should be ashamed of their conduct and must work towards improving the status of the area and EMA would continue to implement measures to improve the environment.

The tour focused on effluent management and rehabilitation works in Sauerstown, Mahatshula and Aiselby, as well as solid waste management at the waste transfer sites in Cowdray Park and at Pumula-Entemba road.

Bulawayo City Council senior environment health officer, Nkanyiso Ndlovu said the local authority was trying to find innovative ways of improving service delivery to residents.

“On June 29, 2015, the use of community trucks in collecting refuse was piloted at Emganwini, a suburb that is furthest from the landfill, and, thus, been progressively rolled out to all suburbs in the city,” he said.

“In this programme, owners of trucks with a three to seven-tonne capacity are recruited and they will provide their own crews to collect refuse from doorsteps. Residents are required to place their refuse in plastic bags that are then collected by the community trucks. ”

Ndlovu said the clear gains that had been brought by the community refuse removal project had seen the frequency of collection rise.

The rehabilitation of sewer systems in Sauerstown and Mahatshula was progressing well, despite challenges of equipment and pipes. By Sharon Sibindi, source-newsday

‘Free sanitary pads must be issued at maternity homes and schools’-MDC Proportional Representation MP, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga

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A LEGISLATOR has called for issuance of free sanitary pads at maternity homes and schools in view of the decision by Finance minister Patrick Chinamasa to scrap duty on raw materials used to manufacture sanitary wear.

MDC Proportional Representation MP, Priscilla Misihairabwi-Mushonga, who started a campaign for the scrapping of duty on sanitary wear, argued that women and girls could not afford it, resulting in some using unsafe methods to manage their menstrual periods.

Chinamasa announced in the 2017 National Budget statement that the government would ensure duty-free importation of raw materials, which include pulp, glue and virgin tissue, under manufacturers’ rebate.

“The move will bring prices of sanitary wear down, but what we want to see is a situation where sanitary pads are provided at schools for young girls to access freely, as well as at all maternity homes,” Misihairabwi-Mushonga said.by Veneranda  Langa . source-newsday

“It is a good thing to scrap duty on sanitary wear because if that duty is removed, the manufacturers will be able to produce sanitary wear at a cheaper cost, and, as women MPs, we feel that we have won, but what we need to do is to keep monitoring its implementation.”

She said women giving birth at hospitals used to be asked to bring sanitary wear, and for those who did not have money it was difficult to manage their menstruation.

“Non-governmental organisations will also be able to give out sanitary wear to rural girls, since it will not be very costly for them to do so. Duty-free raw materials will also attract investors, who are interested in sanitary wear manufacturing to come to Zimbabwe as it will be a viable business,” Misihairabwi-Mushonga said.

The MP said the process of getting Chinamasa to finally remove duty on sanitary wear was a long one, which included meetings with sanitary wear manufacturers, and Finance ministry director Chipo Mhini.

In her motion on sanitary wear in 2014, Misihairabwi-Mushonga said lack of money was forcing poor women and girls to resort to unorthodox means like using pieces of old cloth, tissue paper, old newspapers and other unsafe means to manage their menstrual cycle. This, however, endangered their reproductive health. By Veneranda Langa. source-newsday

China donates equipment and drugs (US$50 000) to Mbuya Nehanda Maternity Hospital for prevention and treatment of cervical cancer

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The Chinese Government yesterday handed over medical equipment and drugs worth US$50 000 to Mbuya Nehanda Maternity Hospital to be used for the prevention and treatment of cervical cancer. The ceremony also saw the presentation of six doctors from China who will work in Zimbabwe for two weeks assisting patients on reproductive health. In a speech read on his behalf by the director of family health in the Ministry of Health and Child Care, Dr Bernard Madzima, Minister Dr David Parirenyatwa said cervical cancer was the most common cancer among women accounting for 33,4 percent of all cancer cases among women.

Zimbabwe is one of the 10 countries in Africa with a high burden of cervical cancer. “The disease burden for cervical cancer had been greatly influenced by the HIV epidemic. It is estimated that in Zimbabwe over 1 800 women are diagnosed of cervical cancer and about 1 500 die of the disease every year.

“Most cancer patients have no access to screening, early diagnosis, treatment even palliative care including pain relief. The early detection and treatment of cervical cancer does not require sophisticated facilities and equipment or highly specialised professionals. This can be decentralised to districts,” he said.

He expressed concern that most patients sought health care at an advanced stage of disease when treatment prospects would be greatly diminished.

“We have lost our loved ones to cervical cancer when it could have been prevented. The lucky patients are the ones with enough money to seek care or get assistance,”he said. The situation has been made better for Parirenyatwa Group of Hospitals thanks to the Chinese team from Hunan Provincial Maternal and Child care Hospital who have come to give us support as we are going to hold a 10 day camp for the same cause,” he said.

He said Zimbabwe and China enjoyed a strong relationship dated back to the liberation struggle. China has supported Zimbabwe in the health department since independence and building hospitals, providing equipment and medicines and bilateral arrangements.

Chinese deputy ambassador, Zhao Baogang, said Zimbabwe and China enjoyed profound and traditional relations of friendship that dated back to the liberation struggle.

“We have close cooperation in all fields including health care. To further enhance bilateral cooperation in health, the Chinese President Xi Jinping made a commitment at the United Nations Summit to build 100 hospitals and clinics and implement 100 projects of maternal and child health in the developing countries in the next five years and announced the “China-Africa Public Health Cooperation Programme in the Johannesburg Summit of China Africa Cooperation Forum.

“The medical team coming from China is a follow up of the above mentioned commitments and a former start of cooperation in maternal and child health between the two countries. The team of six doctors will carry out philanthropic operations and give consultations and medical check ups throughout the two weeks stay here at Parirenyatwa Hospital,” he said.

Deputy Ambassador Zhao said the Chinese Government had already sent 14 batches of medical teams with a total sum of over 130 specialists to Zimbabwe.

“The Chinese doctors have been working closely with local hospitals and provide many philanthropic medical checks and consultations in Gweru, Bindura, Mutare, Chinhoyi and Seke with over 2 000 partners receiving free medical services and given hospitality to support them.

Parirenyatwa clinical director, Mr Noah Madziva said the donated equipment would go along in assisting patients at the institution. Elita Chikwati .source-herald

33-YEAR-OLD self-proclaimed cleric charged with raping a congregant during a “healing” session, by Gokwe Magistrates’ Court

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A 33-YEAR-OLD self-proclaimed cleric has been arraigned at the Gokwe Magistrates’ Court charged with raping a congregant during a “healing” session.

The suspect, Samson Madhuyu, who leads the Masimba Apostolic Church, was not asked to plead when he appeared last week before regional magistrate, Amos Maturure, who remanded him to January 26 next year.

Allegations against Madhuyu are that on September 1, he told the complainant that she had an evil spirit that needed to be exorcised.

The State alleges Madhuyu took the complainant into his vehicle and proceeded to Defe Road, where he parked his car on a bridge.

Madhuyu then allegedly asked the complainant if she was interested in a polygamous marriage, but she spurned him.

This did not go down well with the cleric, who then tilted the complainant’s seat backwards and allegedly raped her once.

After the alleged act, Madhuyu ordered the complainant not to disclose the abuse or he would cast evil spirits on her.

The court heard the suspect then took the complainant to his wife, Lisper Mupazino, where she spent three days, but did not tell anyone.

After her release, she discovered she was pregnant and immediately informed her aunt of the alleged abuse, leading to Madhuyu’s arrest.

Madhuyu was represented by Solomon Kangembeu, while the State was represented by Tineyi Tirigo. By Desmond Chingarande. source-newsday

At least 100 people were reportedly killed by the collapse of a church in south-eastern Nigeria

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UYO. — At least 100 people were killed by the collapse of a church in south-eastern Nigeria, a resident and photojournalist who visited the town morgue said yesterday, a day after the incident.

“At Uyo teaching hospital where I am now I could see over a hundred corpses, many are heaped on top of each other on the floor,” said photojournalist Ini Samuel. “Eyewitnesses also said yesterday corpses were packed in four each bag.”

Gary Ubong, a resident, said the church’s roof had collapsed on worshippers while a pastor was being consecrated as bishop in the presence of government officials.

“I saw more than 100 dead bodies brought out on loaders,” said Ubong, who said he had rushed to the scene after the accident. “I also went to two hospitals and saw heaps of dead bodies difficult to count.”

State police spokeswoman Cordelia Nwawe said 27 had been killed and 30 injured when the Reigners Bible Church in Akwa Ibom state capital Uyo collapsed during a service on Saturday. State emergency agency NEMA said in a statement that six people had been killed and 115 injured. State governor Udom Emmanuel, who escaped unhurt from the church service, ordered the arrest of the building contractor, state news agency NAN said.

Building collapses are frequent in the West African nation and often blamed by officials on lack of construction permits and the use of cheap materials amid widespread corruption.

Critics say Nigerian authorities tend to understate the death toll at such accidents or suicide bombings by the Boko Haram jihadist group in the north of the country.

At a gas plant blast in southern Nigeria a year ago, the presidency said “tens of people” had been killed while eyewitnesses counted more than 100 bodies. Police had then just confirmed eight dead. — Reuters.

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Ex Amakorokoza actor ‘stabbed wife , choked her, before punching her several times on the mouth’ for arriving home late.

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FORMER Amakorokoza actor Aleck “Skoro” Zulu (44) allegedly stabbed his wife with a knife, grabbed her by the neck before punching her several times on the mouth for arriving home late.

A court heard yesterday that Zulu insulted his wife, Ms Eunice Chikomba and threatened to reveal her HIV status to our sister paper, B-Metro.

The status was not disclosed in court.

Zulu lost his temper when Ms Chikomba arrived home around 11PM on Friday.

He appeared before Bulawayo Magistrate Ms Adelaide Mbeure facing a physical abuse charge.

The magistrate did not ask him to plead and remanded him in custody to December 19.

Prosecuting Mr Nkathazo Dlodlo said on December 9 at around 11PM, Ms Chikomba arrived home and found Zulu already at home. Cynthia Dube, source-chronicle

Harare man (20), sentenced to 14 years’ imprisonment for raping a 16-year-old Mughodhi Church mate after a youth meeting

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A 20-YEAR-OLD Harare man, Gerald Gatsi, was yesterday sentenced to 14 years’ imprisonment for raping a 16-year-old churchmate after a youth meeting.Gatsi will spend the next 10 years behind bars after four years were suspended on condition of good behaviour by regional magistrate, Hosiah Mujaya.

According to evidence presented in court, Gatsi and the complainant (name withheld) are members of Mughodhi Church and were attending a church services in Retreat Park, Waterfalls.

The court heard on May 21 this year, the girl was on her way from a church service Gatsi had also attended, when she saw him following her in the company of an unidentified person.

Gatsi is said to have caught up with the girl, pushed her off the road and felled her into a pit.

At that point, the person, who was accompanying Gatsi, ran away leaving the two at the scene.

The court heard, while in the pit, Gatsi raped the teenager and after that he left, leaving his victim at the scene.

After the sexual assault, the teenager did not report the matter, but on the following day, she then spilled the beans to her mother, who reported the abuse to one Marevanhema, a church youth leader.

Marevanhema promised to take up the issue with the pastor so that the matter would be discussed.

The court heard the matter was then discussed and it was agreed that Gatsi should pay the complainant’s parents $250 and one beast as damages following which an agreement was signed by both parties.

From the day that the agreement was signed, the court heard, the complainant’s mother fell ill and was admitted at a local hospital.

After recovering from her illness, the complainant’s mother then phoned Gatsi’s relatives claiming what was due to her and was told Gatsi could not be located. She then made a police report, leading to his arrest.

George Manokore appeared for the State. source-newsday

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