48-hr ultimatum for food vendors

Innocent Ruwende and Nyemudzai Kakore—

Harare City Council and vendors are headed for a showdown after the local authority banned illegal vending of food in the Harare Metropolitan area following a typhoid outbreak which claimed two lives in Mbare.

Both victims died last month.

Council yesterday issued a 48-hour ultimatum for all vendors to cease operations as it reported that 132 suspected cases of typhoid had been recorded so far, while 280 people had presented themselves for screening.

There are 22 confirmed cases of typhoid and fears abound the disease could spread through unhygienic food vending.

Health Services director Dr Prosper Chonzi said he feared further typhoid outbreaks as the drivers of the disease were still to be dealt with.

“As the health director, l am still worried as the determinants of a typhoid outbreak are still out there. That makes it difficult for the disease to be contained,” said Dr Chonzi.

“We cannot win this if the environmental factors which exacerbate typhoid such as uncollected garbage, sewage, unsafe water sources and uncontrolled vending of foodstuffs are left as they are,” he said.

“We need to be cruel if we are to contain the outbreak and the ban on (street food) vending is a welcome development. People should buy food in licensed premises which meet the required standards of the Public Health Act and other council by-laws.”

Dr Chonzi urged residents, especially children, to go for early screening in the event of symptoms related to typhoid.

The symptoms of typhoid are; poor appetite, abdominal pain, headaches, generalised aches and pains, fever, high temperature, lethargy (usually only if untreated), intestinal bleeding or perforation (after two to three weeks of the disease), diarrhoea or constipation.

Harare acting corporate communications manager Mr Michael Chideme said the situation on the ground had forced council to take drastic measures to contain the spread of the disease.

“Preliminary investigations have shown that the key drivers of typhoid and other water-borne diseases are issues related to personal hygiene, unregulated vending of foodstuffs such as vegetables, meat, fish (cooked and uncooked) and inadequate water supplies,” said Mr Chedeme.

“There are issues that we can immediately control/regulate to ensure that we contain the spread of typhoid. One of these is street vending. We are therefore issuing a 48-hour ultimatum to all illegal food vendors operating within the Harare Metropolitan area to cease operations temporarily forthwith. The ban will be reviewed depending on improvements on the ground,” he said.

Mr Chideme said the ban also covered general vending at illegal sites, and that pushcarts used in the central business district would be impounded during the exercise.

Impounded fruits, meat, maize, fish and vegetables would be destroyed, he said.

Mr Chideme said the operation was being undertaken to protect the public.

“We are invoking the Public Health Act for the public good. We are aware of the fierce backlash that we will receive from the vendors, but our actions are in the public interest.”

Pin It
  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    If sanctions, supported by your MDCT, had not been imposed on our economy, it was going to be easy to create the jobs. Don`t shed crocodile tears on the jobs issue when your political fingers are too dirty for this debate, you stinking stooge of the West. The majority of Zimbabweans understand the negative effects of sanctions , hence their continued voting for ZANU PF in harmonized elections despite the terrible suffering. “Stoogish“ propaganda from sellouts like you wont give you any political mileage as your have foolishly yearned for , over the years. The people are suffering ,not because of ZANU PF , but sanctions imposed after our legitimate land reform. Before sanctions the economic problems were far less and bearable. I don`t hesitate or fear provoking the satanic spirits of those MDCT “stoogish“supporters of sanctions who have attacked me on this forum over the sanctions issue. Sanctions are evil and must go yesteryear, so to speak. Our ZANU PF , patriotic and progressive government you hate so much has refused to reverse the land reform ,which was entrenched in our new constitution,thereby rendering your party that still support sanctions a bunch of quislings. I rest my attack on your political myopia.

    • murambatsvina

      Cde Mazvinavhu(Prof) vawudze chokwadi, anogara akapokana nezvatawurwa kana zvayitiwa nehurumende ndivava the same people vajayira kuyitirwa nekuwuraya nyika. Vending ayina kuyipa ###chete zvanyanya. MDC tikatarisa nayi iwe Moe, positive thinking makamiririra vachena mukabhadarwa kuwuraya nyika yenyu. Zvakaratidza kuti brain ve MDC amuna. Iwe unoti ma industry akawurayiwa ne ZANUPF vana sekuru venyu vakatorerwa company ipi ne ZANUPF. Nyaya iripapa ndeye tsvina I was once vendor atina kumbuyita zvetsvina yakadai kuma 70s tichimhanyiskwa nema brothers enyu varungu. Kutengesera panetsvina pakadai. Pa dodi rakadai. ko ZANUPF yazviwanira papi pakusazvibata panyaya yekushambidzika. (Prof) vanhu ivava varikunyatso shedzwa kuti ndana baba zvakana mudzimba. They are not good leaders munharawunda mavo.Nekuti ukawona munhu mupenyu especially arimurume ongochema nekuti takatadzirwa neZANUPF not nevarungu. That means you are blind awuwoni zvakanaka. Ko chiyita iwe tiwone naka vana vedu votozvara varungu nekuda zvechirungu zvinodiwa nana baba vanoda varungu. Nekuti ve MDC vanongochema varikudivi reva chena ndokwakabva ma sanctions acho. Pamwe wakanga usati wazvarwa panyaya MDCT NDIYO yakatokumbira masanctions. Shuwa munhu akangwara woshedzera kuti kana ndichida kunzi baba wotoshedza baba vepa nextdoor pako zvinoyita wo here.YAKASHEDZERA kanawanga usingazive. Pamberi na (Prof) tell them

    • Bvunzai

      Zimbabwe earns its money by exporting Tobacco and minerals ie gold, chrome, platinum, diamonds etc and by remittances from the diaspora (Check RBZ list of source of receipts). The last time I checked all these commodities are in no way affected by any sanctions we sell them freely on the world market. In short, the so called sanctions are not affecting our revenues. Explain how the sanctions are affecting the country, by giving facts, stats and evidence.
      When the country had the second best public transport system in the world, wasnt it under sanctions?
      When the country had the only viable and best run underground copper mine in the world, was it not under sanctions?
      When the country embarked on housing projects with full sanitary facilities in Mbare, Highfields, Glen View etc was it not under sanctions
      When the country offered free health and fought traditional diseases like polio, measles, even infant mortality rates – was it not under sanctions?
      When the country became the bread basket of Africa, was it not under sanctions
      When the country designed , commissioned Feruka plant, was it not under sanctions.
      When the country was creating jobs and having foreigners coming to look for work, was it not under sanctions?
      When your Education was free Prof Muzvinavhu – i can go on and on
      The hard truth Prof is we are not builders….all we have we did not build, it was built by others we only renamed the roads and buildings. It wasnt our ideas and therefore vision. We did not create Air Zimbabwe for example – we inherited it and ran it down. We did not establish Hwange mine – we eventually destroyed it.
      In a similar fashion we did not plan , design and build hospital systems – and so we destroyed them.
      Can you imagine even the new Parliament building we are to build, was not designed by a Zimbabwean and it will not be built by Zimbabweans. It will not be funded from our resources either.
      You know very well even from where you come from that most or all inherited black business crumbled within a short time. Thats who we are – do you think the result will be different at national level? families build communities and communities build a nation.
      The problem with us IS US Prof Muzvinavhu.
      We often want to blame others..but WE ARE THE PROBLEM…
      When I was growing up in the 80s the country I knew as the poorest country was Ethiopia. But this country was never colonised. But when they looked at themselves and started doing things better they are now the fastest growing economy in Africa. Can you believe they have deigned their own satelite and rocket and will be launching it into space within 3 years.
      Blaming our failures on our colonisers will not get us anywhere.

    • Sadly Zimba

      Please tell me how Zanupf would have created these jobs if the sanctions were not in place?
      Please enlighten us on one thing Zanupf could have done to improve the economy if they were no sanctions.
      when you are pulling #### out your ### remember, their countries in this world that don’t have sanctions on them but are trading with the same partners we currently trading with and their economies are doing just fine.

    • zimbotry

      ZanuPF is the biggest sanction Zimbabwe has ever known. How much would the cost of the annual holidays have helped our hospitals for instance?

  • succuba

    You are a little messed up in the head (fakey), Show me a link where UN, AU and SADC said the elections were fair…. they said they were largely free of violence but NEVER said they were fair.

  • Gamba ReManyika

    You said it before me. You are spot on. And Michael Chideme is very narrow-minded indeed. He is saying banning vending will protect the public. It has not yet occurred to him that the public he is trying to protect is the one that is vending. I have always asked where all these vendors go for toileting because public toilets are rarely functional. Shame on our leaders! Majoring on symptoms, not the drivers of diseases as you claim.

  • succuba

    What sanctions are you referring too Mungandidii, please explain and be specific and name them singularly not grouping them with the noun sanctions and we can debate each one.

  • Observer gonzo

    Because the looters targeted by the sanctions are still at their game silly! The only effect of sanctions is they limit the looters’ choices of spending our money.
    That is why one lady on sanctions list lost a rough diamond trying to get it cut and polished through underground networks, avoiding the bonafide transparent jewelers and getting conned in the process. Do you seriously shed a tear for such people, huh?

    Yet people like you still dont see where marange diamonds went and you still hate countries that are seeing through this rot and trying whatever small action they can take to protect you.

  • Cde Mzvinavhu(Prof)

    I was responding to Positive Thinking`s issue on 2.2 mil jobs that is linked to jobless vendors. Please don`t read while asleep. The MDCT councilors can answer your questions about council services