University of Zimbabwe graduation cancelled due to Harare Cholera

Desiree Burns
September 15, 2018

Assistant Commissioner Nyathi also urged members of the public to co-operate with law enforcement agents and other stakeholders as the police try to bring sanity in the affected suburbs and the CBD to curtail the spread of cholera.

Authorities say there are more than 3,000 suspected cases of cholera with some 45 confirmed.

With the help of worldwide agencies, the outbreak was controlled, and by July 2009, after no cases had been reported for several weeks, the Zimbabwe Ministry of Health and Child Welfare declared the outbreak over.

Recent deaths include a school headmaster and two schoolchildren in Glen View, a poor suburb that has been identified as one of the epicenters of the outbreak.

The main opposition leader Nelson Chamisa who visited clinics where cholera patients were being treated earlier on Wednesday, planned to hold a rally on Saturday where he may take a mock presidential oath.

Chamisa toured a health facility and called on the United Nations to help contain the situation.

Britain warned people thinking of visiting Harare about the cholera outbreak and urged travellers to learn to recognise symptoms of the disease.

Zimbabwe has experienced frequent outbreaks of cholera, with the largest outbreak occurring from August 2008 to May 2009 and claiming more than 4000 lives.

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Cholera outbreaks have been a common occurrence in Zimbabwe due to the country's outdated water and sanitation infrastructure. Since then, water and sanitation infrastructure has been collapsing.

President Emmerson Mnangagwa, who succeeded Mugabe, has pledged to revive the economy and improve public services.

"We are declaring an emergency for Harare".

WHO is supporting the Ministry of Health and Child Care to fight the outbreak by strengthening the coordination of the response and mobilizing national and global health experts to form a cholera surge team.

A total of 4,000 people died and at least 100,000 people fell ill.

It is understood that this current outbreak has been caused by blocked sewers.

Cholera, a water borne disease, can be prevented by taking precautions such as washing hands thoroughly with clean water, only drinking water from safe sources and storing clean water in covered containers.

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