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Typhoid outbreak not biological warfare


Health and Child Welfare minister Henry Madzorera yesterday dismissed as mischievous claims by Zanu PF officials the typhoid outbreak hitting parts of Harare could be attributed to biological warfare waged by the countrys former colonisers, the British.

Madzoreras remarks were in response to Zanu PF Harare province spokesperson Claudius Mutero who was quoted as blaming the outbreak, which has so far affected 1 500 residents, on economic sanctions and biological warfare by Western powers.

The sanctions-induced typhoid does not discriminate whether one is MDC-T or Zanu PF as it attacks all people irrespective of their sex, ethnic or religious background.

We suspect biological warfare by imperialists who are using nationals worldwide as conduits. Councillors must unite and call for the removal of these sanctions, Mutero was quoted as having said.

However, Madzorera said there was no link between the typhoid outbreak and the British.

Some Zanu PF officials have been quoted in the State media falsely claiming that the outbreak was as a result of the British government, but no further evidence was made by the officials or the State media to support their claims, said Madzorera.

We owe it to ourselves and there is need to remedy the situation. As a country, we should not be suffering from medieval diseases. The problem is that we are receivers of a failed economy.

Instead, Madzorera said typhoid was a systematic bacterial disease that was characterised by insidious onset of sustained fever, headaches, malaise, anorexia, and rose spots on the trunk, a non-productive cough in the early stages of the illness and constipation or diarrhoea in adults.

He said his ministry, Harare City Council and several local and international organisations were working hard to curb the outbreak.

This is not the first time that Zanu PF has made ridiculous claims against foreign countries. A few years ago, the struggling party alleged that the foreign countries were responsible for the abnormal rainfall in the country, he said.

Meanwhile, a recent police and council clampdown on illegal food outlets in and outside the city has reportedly left hundreds of informal traders out of business.

Kiri Moyo, who runs a fast food stall at the Mereki joint, Warren Park, said: This was my only source of income; I was paying fees, rent and other necessities from the money I get from roasting meat and selling sadza.

I dont know where to start from now.
In the city centre council police fought running battles with vendors trading fruits and other ready-to-eat foodstuffs.

City health services director Dr Prosper Chonzi said: The move to close food stalls is not selective, it is a matter of time before we get to the suburbs not yet affected.

We are not going back, we have to contain this disease and once everything is in place they can reopen and start trading.

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