Govt to expedite reconstruction of Mpilo Property with an estimated US$500 000 was destroyed in the fire.

Bulawayo Bureau

GOVERNMENT will expedite the reconstruction of Mpilo Central Hospital doctors’ residence in Bulawayo that was gutted by fire and the upgrade will meet contemporary designs that take into account disaster smart technologies.

President Mnangagwa said this yesterday while addressing doctors and nurses at Mpilo Central Hospital following his tour of the institution to meet the medical professionals after one of their hostels was gutted by the inferno last Wednesday.

The fire is suspected to have started from an electrical distribution box at the residence before spreading through the building, leaving one occupant injured during escape while US$500 000 property was destroyed.

“My Government was gravely concerned upon learning of the inferno that destroyed the residence of health workers here at Mpilo Central Hospital on the 25th and 26th of May 2021. 

“I am informed this is the third fire incident in the residences since 2018. This is a worrying issue . . . and this has compounded the existing shortage of accommodation for our health professionals within this facility.

“Following the doctors’ residence that was gutted by fire, I have directed the Ministry of Local Government and Public Works to ensure that the reconstructed residence is quickly completed. “Furthermore, the interior room layout must meet modern designs which take into account disaster smart technologies and reflect stature of occupants,” he said.

Vice President Dr Constantino Chiwenga who is also the Minister of Health and Child Care, Ministers of Defence and War Veterans Affairs Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Monica Mutsvangwa, Finance and Economic Development Professor Mthuli Ncube as well as Local Government and Public Works July Moyo, among others and several Government officials accompanied the President.

The Government has already set aside $288 million to facilitate repairs of the doctors’ hostel.

Further to the reconstruction of the gutted doctor’s residence, President Mnangagwa has also directed the construction of additional hostels at the hospital to accommodate student nurses from the nursing school.

“Over and above the reconstruction of the destroyed facility, I have also instructed additional hostels be constructed to house students from the nursing school.  As we expand and modernise this institution, Government will continue to work with all progressive stakeholders to preserve this facility,” he said.

Under the National Development Strategy 1, President Mnangagwa said the Government was also prioritising the modernisation of the health sector by accelerating reforms within the sector.

“We are determined to improve the infrastructure within our hospitals and conditions of service for health workers,” he said.

At the event, the Government through the Ministry of Health and Child Care donated 30 tonnes of rice to the health professionals and patients at Mpilo Hospital.

Industry and Commerce Deputy Minister Raj Modi through his retail business also donated groceries and personal protective equipment and sanitisers, among other goodies while the Affirmative Action Group (AAG) donated 39 laptops and plasma television sets to the affected health workers. 

The President said the Government remains grateful to stakeholders that include business, religious groups, civil society organisations, Bulawayo community and individuals from within and outside the country for the gesture that they have shown. 

“Today, I am pleased to receive a donation from the members of the Affirmative Action Group, which is here. I commend the group for complementing my Government’s efforts to bring about relief to the health workers affected by the disaster. 

“This spirit of togetherness in the face of adversity and challenges is in keeping with our culture as Zimbabweans and as Africans. 

“This must be deepened and nurtured going in the future,” he said.

Meanwhile, the President underscored the need for the youths to maximise on the broad economic opportunities across all sectors of the economy as the country progresses towards the attainment of Vision 2030.

Under the leadership of President Mnangagwa, the country envisages to attain an upper middle-income economy by 2030.

Already, the country has started progressing towards Vision 2030 through the implementation of  National Development Strategy 1.

He said the youthful entrepreneurs should be proactive and participate in all economic sectors while inculcating values such as honesty, ethics and hard work. 

“These values are fundamental ingredients to building sustainable development and inter-generational prosperity. 

“Meanwhile, I commend our health professionals for their commitment, selfless dedication to duty and service to the people of our great country. 

“Together in love and with the spirit of purpose, we will continue to witness progressive improvements across all sectors of our economy,” he said.

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