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New Cholera Threat Looms In Zimbabwe As Rainy Season Approaches

The cholera epidemic that claimed more than 4,000 lives in Zimbabwe from late 2008 into this year has largely subsided, but the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs warned this week that the epidemic could return with the rainy season in September-October as many of its causes have not been eliminated.

The UN agency said broken sewage and water pipes continue to present risk of contamination of urban water supplies while many rural communities still lack proper latrines resulting in unhygienic practices leading to bacteria washing into water supplies.

Executive Director Itayi Rusike of the Community Working Group On Health agreed with the UN assessment, telling Marvellous Mhlanga-Nyahuye of VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe that the next outbreak could be severe as too few repairs to urban infrastructure have been made and rural sanitation and water supplies leave much to be desired.

More reports from VOA's Studio 7 for Zimbabwe...