The Ministry of Health says local authorities should assist residents in forming community health clubs in order to ensure that they live in a clean environment.
Officially launching sanitation week Monday, the ministry's Environmental Services Director Goldberg Mangwadu, told journalists that community health clubs play a key role in the provision of ablution facilities and other basic public health necessities.
Mangwadu said the majority of people do not have access to clean water and ablution facilities. “Community health clubs are the best option as this will empower people in making sure that they keep their areas clean,” he said.
Mangwadu said littering is widespread in most urban areas as residents believe that keeping towns and cities clean is the responsibility of local authorities.
Remberance Mashava of the Institute of Sanitation and Water Development urged the media to campaign for good sanitation initiatives saying the focus this week is on waste management.
Engineer Samuel Muserere of Harare said the local authority is doing all it can to improve water and sanitation in the city.
Muserere, however, expressed concern that the city council is still releasing 54 mega liters of raw sewage into Harare’s waterways because of the subdued operations at the sewerage treatment works.
The city’s plants can only treat 94 mega liters of the total 154 mega liters passing through its plants daily.
Poor water and sanitation conditions have led to the outbreaks of diseases such as cholera and typhoid.
Report Filed By Irwin Chifera
Interview With Shamiso Mtisi
Meanwhile, 600 villages in Chipinge District, Manicaland Province, are expected to benefit from a $122,000 grant from the Japanese government for funding water and sanitation programs.
A non-profit organization, Mercy Corps, is expected to implement the program in conjunction with the government. It will rehabilitate 40 watering points, set up two new water sources and establish 10 additional gardens.
Zimbabwe Environmental Law Association research and documentation officer Shamiso Mtisi said he hopes the grant will also help villagers along Save River, who are being negatively affected by the diamond mining at Chiadzwa which is polluting their water sources.