HARARE – The late vice president Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo’s family claims that it had found a potential investor for the Ekusileni hospital project but the taskforce managing the project turned down the offer.
The visionary leader’s son Sibangilizwe Nkomo told Daily News yesterday that they had settled for Clinix Health Group from South Africa but authorities turned that down opting for an Indian investor — Shadar Group of Hospitals — whose authenticity is still to be verified.
He said four investors had bid for the project and the South African Clinix Health Group had topped the list, further noting it was not clear where the Indian investor emanated from.
Nkomo said the family was accorded an opportunity to play an active role in the vetting of the investors as an honour since the project was the brain child of their father.
“We were really given high hopes that this was a matter of respect for the legacy, as an honour to the old man, my father.”
Over the weekend the State media reported that a team of officials from the Health ministry will next week visit India to confirm the existence of Shadar Group of Hospitals.
Doctor Nyasha Masuka, the chairperson of the taskforce running Ekusileni Medical Centre reportedly said this was standard procedure and the team wanted to check if the people it wanted to engage in the project really exist.
Yesterday, Nkomo said the family had last been in contact with the former Health minister David Parirenyatwa earlier this year and had not met the new minister Obadiah Moyo.
“We had thought Clinix Health Group had done a very thorough job. Now they are saying they have to check if this Indian investor really exists; it’s utter nonsense,” Nkomo fumed.
“We had looked for the best in our region; we had found a potential investor and they were going to do a good job.”
Nkomo said he was very doubtful that the hospital was going to open in January next year, saying there have been a lot of falsehoods from authorities.
“That’s their game; I can bet you, the hospital is not going to open; it’s not going to happen.”
Media reports have indicated that the hospital is set to open its doors on January 1 next year following the engagement of the Indian Investor.
In the latest economic blue-print, the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) the Finance ministry indicated that the hospital would be opened in two phases to be rolled in 2019 and 2020.
Last week, Nkomo told the Daily News there have been many false starts for the hospital with government failing to fulfil its promises.
He said the family is worried that Umdala Wethu’s vision is not being taken seriously.
Ekusileni Hospital, the brainchild of the late vice president, remains closed since its construction in 2001.
Nkomo said there had been indications earlier that the hospital would open in July this year but nothing materialised of the assurances when the date arrived.