via STIs, ‘Mujuru flies’ rock Tk Mukosi camp – New Zimbabwe 25 June 2014 by Staff Reporter
THE Chingwizi Transit Camp, temporary home to 3,000 families displaced by Tokwe Mukosi floods, has been hit by an outbreak of sexually transmitted infections (STI) with living conditions reportedly getting ever more desperate.
Masvingo Provincial Aids Coordinator, Evos Makoni, said more than 200 cases of STIs had been reported to date.
“There has been over 200 cases of sexually transmitted infections recorded for the last three months and these are syphilis and gonorrhoea,” said Makoni in a telephone interview.
“But there are enough drugs to deal with the outbreak which is cutting across all age groups and we have now started a series of campaigns on behavioural change with our local partners to try and reduce the scourge of STIs at the camp.”
Fiery Progressive Teachers Union of Zimbabwe (PTUZ) Secretary General Raymond Majongwe accused the government of focussing on trivia while conditions at the camp deteriorate.
Speaking at a public meeting organised by the Coalition Against Corruption (CAC) in Harare Wednesday, Majongwe said he was shocked by conditions at the camp during a recent visit.
“There are large flies called Mai Mujuru flies which are ravaging the area; I do not know why they are called that and I am not trying to insult the Vice President (Joice Mujuru) who is the acting president, but it’s a fact that there are flies referred to by that name that are following the rot.”
Authorities had also given scant consideration to the health and education needs of children living in the camp, Majongwe added.
“It is sad that people first think of other things when there is a disaster and education seems to (come) last; as an afterthought.”
Meanwhile, Masvingo Minister of State, Kudakwashe Bhasikati, said that he is not aware of the STI outbreak.
Chingwizi Village Heads Committee chairman, Mike Mudyanembwa, recently warned of a possible disaster at the camp, saying facilities were woefully inadequate.
“We are only left with about 36 temporary toilets which are being shared by over 3,000 households and there can never be a greater disaster than that,” he said.
“We used to have over 100 toilets at this camp but the rest were decommissioned after they filled up. The toilets were three metres deep and once they are filled to about two metres with waste they are closed.”