Minister Relives Covid-19 Near-Death Experience

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By James Muonwa, Mashonaland West Correspondent

Mashonaland West provincial minister, Mary Mliswa-Chikoka has a tale to tell after surviving the deadly Covid-19.

She was diagnosed Covid-19 positive mid-November, went into self-isolation before her condition deteriorated and was rushed to a Harare private hospital for treatment.

Luckily, she survived!

The minister made her first official public appearance last Friday following a lengthy lay-back as she recuperated at home.

Narrated Mliswa-Chikoka; “I want to talk about Covid-19 as a survivor. What l can tell you is that this disease is painful. Being asthmatic l had difficulties in breathing and thought it was one of those days. I used my inhaler but my condition worsened.”

Mliswa-Chikoka, who is sister to outspoken Norton independent MP Temba Mliswa, said she was whisked to Harare for specialist treatment while on oxygen and was staring death.

“The journey from Chinhoyi to Harare was a dice with death. I kept telling myself ‘l am dying’. There came a time l became so breathless l wanted to give up. I am lucky to be alive to tell this tale,” she said.

Asked where and when she could have contracted the viral disease, Mliswa-Chikoka responded; “Where? I don’t even know, but l was very careful and kept myself well. I was shocked to have gotten infected although everyone else around me, including my children, no-one got Covid-19.”

She said asymptomatic patients were super-spreaders of Covid-19 while mourners at funeral wakes were the most susceptible to the pandemic.

Mliswa-Chikoka urged people to adhere to set World Health Organisation (WHO) protocols that include wearing face masks, hand sanitising, physical distancing and staying home.

She also called on those who suspect they have Covid-19 to get tested.

“Covid-19 is now a way of life and the pandemic is not going to be eradicated anytime soon, therefore, people had to rely on preventing contracting it as there is no vaccine yet with proven 100% efficacy,” said Mliswa-Chikoka.