By Staff Reporter
THE Chegutu Municipality has set aside $500 000 towards the tiny Mashonaland West town’s efforts to combat the spread of coronavirus.
Chegutu Mayor Henry Muchatibaya said a portion of the amount was going to be directed towards activities to disinfect parts of the town, among them, vending stalls.
“As Chegutu Municipality, we have put in place RTGS$500 000 towards this disease,” Muchatibaya said, adding that the money will also be used to procure essential material to fight the much-dreaded virus outbreak in its backyard.
“The money will, among other things, be used for the procurement of personal protective equipment and sanitisers among other essentials,” he said.
The farming community, as a preventive measure, is also disinfecting public places.
“We are also disinfecting public places starting with vending stalls.
“At the vending stalls, we have also minimised the number of vendors who will be accessing the place,” said the mayor, adding that the town has identified a clinic as a Covid-19 Isolation Centre.
“We have set aside Chinengundu Clinic as a centre for Covid-19 in case we encounter the scourge. This is only a place for testing and isolating suspected cases,” he said.
Chegutu is wary of the coronavirus menace which has claimed 3 lives from the 18 confirmed cases in Zimbabwe so far.
The anticipated outbreak of the world pandemic in the town also brings back memories of a deadly cholera disaster which hit the farming town over a decade ago.
Muchatibaya said Chegutu has adopted a multi-sectoral approach with various stakeholders to raise awareness and encourage preventive measures among residents.
“We are doing all we can to make sure our people do not contract this deadly disease,” he said.
“We were once hit hard by cholera in 2008, so we are doing all we can to curb this scourge.
“We are working with various organisations to raise awareness and preventive measures around the scourge.”
The World Health Organisation is encouraging people to constantly wash their hands to minimise chances of contracting the virus.
The sanitation requirement however could be a big test to Chegutu, which battles, amongst other challenges, dilapidated infrastructure, disused water and sewer infrastructure.
Residents rely on boreholes, most of them dysfunctional, a situation putting pressure on the few functional ones.