Zimbabwe has made an appeal to individual citizens and local companies for $35 million in a bid to fight the current cholera outbreak the country is facing. So far, 31 people have been killed and more than 5,000 have been infected, the finance minister said.
This is the worst cholera outbreak that Zimbabwe has experienced in a decade. This crisis has exposed the problem of decaying urban infrastructure that became synonymous with the rule of Robert Mugabe who was removed after a coup in November and replaced by President Emmerson Mnangagwa.
The government has raised $29 million, half from private companies and foreign aid agencies, out of a target of $64.1 million needed for vaccinations, drugs, clean water and better water and sewer pipes, said Finance Minister Mthuli Ncube.
“The private corporate sector, development partners, individuals, including Zimbabweans in the diaspora, are being called upon to provide both financial and non-financial assistance towards responding to the cholera outbreak,” Ncube told reporters.
Government critics have argued that the government is quick to find money to import luxury vehicles but has had to appeal to individuals and companies to fight cholera.
Earlier on Wednesday, Mnangagwa visited Harare’s Glenview township, the epicentre of the outbreak, and met patients and families who lost relatives to the disease.
Mnangagwa said his government would work in hand with the opposition in Harare city council to replace ageing water and sewer pipes after government officials and the opposition blamed each other for the outbreak.