By Bulawayo Correspondent
THE typhoid death toll in Bulawayo’s high density suburb of Luveve has reached 13 with a Grade Four primary school pupil being the latest victim.
Addressing journalists in Bulawayo Friday, the chairperson of the Community Action Group for Good Governance, Nikiwe Ncube Tshabalala said her organisation was concerned about the spike in deaths linked to typhoid and dysentery.
“We are appalled by the ongoing deaths in Bulawayo. So far 13 cases of typhoid have been recorded with the most recent one being of a Grade Four pupil who passed away yesterday (Thursday). The issue is really sad,” she said.
Tshabalala said her organisation had decided to take action following the increasing deaths in Luveve and assist with critical medication.
“With a spate of deaths related to water-borne diseases, we saw it fit that we take action as Bulawayo citizens because we realise this outbreak can affect anyone,” said Tshabalala.
Community Action Group for Good Governance is a group of Bulawayo prominent residents such as academics, engineers, lawyers, civic leaders. They have set up a Working Group on Good Governance, a platform meant to respond rapidly to the Luveve water crisis.
Tshabalala said people need to come together and solve the city’s water woes and implored civil society to gather evidence and sue the city on behalf of the affected residents.
She also accused the Bulawayo City Council of arrogance and failing to accept responsibility for the deaths.
Bulawayo residents are contemplating suing the municipality for causing the deaths and illness to more than 1 500 Luveve residents in the city.
Tests carried out at private laboratories to ascertain the causes of the deaths and illnesses have been linked to symptoms consistent with typhoid and dysentery.
The 144-hour weekly water shedding programme implemented by the city council as part of measures to conserve the city’s dwindling water supplies have been largely blamed for the outbreak.