Villagers in Chachacha area, Shurugwi South Constituency District, are forced to walk long distances of up to 15 kilometres to the nearest clinic, a situation which has forced pregnant women to deliver at home and increased cases of roadside delivery.
Ward 8 Councillor, Audreck Mhaka, told Community Voices Zimbabwe (CVZ) that people are resorting to walking long distances for health services putting their lives in danger,” he said.
The Tongogara Rural District Councillor, Mhike said although plans are underway to construct a local clinic, villagers have gone for a long without a clinic in the area.
“Since the 1980s the people of that area have been trying to establish a clinic. Based on the current thinking and motion we are hoping to start the project of building a clinic. I can safely say that the project has started considering that we have already identified the land. What is needed is unity and funding from different stakeholders,” he said.
In separate interviews, scores of villagers were raising issues about how the lack of a clinic had affected them. They also appealed to relevant stakeholders for assistance.
The villagers said the routes to the alternative hospitals are too long and could not be used by the sick and the disabled.
“If a child gets ill here at our Makotore Primary School, for example, it’s a mammoth task to take him or her to Zvamavande hospital or Rusike Clinic”, said Everisto Mwenje from the area.
Ms Getrude Mbengo, another villager in ward 8 said their lives were always in danger.
“It is difficult for the sick people to walk such a long journey with the paths going through hills and rivers. Just imagine what will happen to the person suffering from COVID-19 walking 15 kilometres, and this might lead to the spread of the disease,” she said.
Local headman, Romeo Makara, from Makara village, ward 8 challenged the villagers to be supportive of the project rather than relying too much on donors.
“We appreciate all efforts and construction plans being made in our area because we all need a clinic to be close to us. Villagers should be united and contribute towards the building of our clinic and we will be progressive. We do not need to be always asking for assistance at the same time failing to prove that we are willing to be helped,” said Makara.