Corruption alleged in fight for corpses
FUNERAL parlours in Bulawayo are alleging corruption between the Social Welfare department and certain parlours in Harare saying pauper burials have been carried out by parlours from the capital for the last three years.
Speaking on behalf of funeral parlours, Funeral Undertakers Services Association (Fusa) executive member Mr Charles Juwake alleged that some people within the department of Social Welfare in Bulawayo had links with funeral parlours in Harare, and were awarding them burial tenders from Government hospitals in the Southern region of the country.
“It is just questionable how Harare parlours are awarded these tenders, yet we have parlours that are fully licensed and have the capacity to handle such tenders. We have serviced such tenders before but now it raises questions as to why we are being sidelined,” said Mr Juwake, who is also the director of Exodus Funeral Services.
“We don’t have any measures to sort this issue out but to complain to various offices hoping they will hear our plea. This has greatly affected our operations and we are finding it difficult to remain in business. Since this began, some of us have had to retrench workers,” said Mr Juwake.
He also claimed that they applied for licences every year to the procurement board to acquire tenders but were told to wait for their turn, which never comes.
“We suspect there is corruption within some of these offices and investigations should be launched. We apply for licences every year, which are just kept in drawers and we find it very queer that Harare parlours come all the way from that region to offer services in our territory,” said Mr Juwake.
He said as stakeholders in the region they had a role to play and have also been working with various residents associations, where they partner each other in assisting in burials of the less privileged.
Mr Juwake also said they had since raised their concerns with the Bulawayo Residents’ Association (Bura).
Bura chairperson Mr Winos Dube confirmed having received such a report, saying that HEALTH workers, expecting mothers and some patients have allegedly vacated a clinic in Lupane following sexual attacks by suspected goblins, authorities have confirmed.
Expecting mothers in waiting mother’s shelter raised alarm complaining of having sleepless nights saying they are seriously being sexually abused by the invisible “things”.
Matabeleland North provincial Medical Director, Dr Alfred Muchara confirmed the alleged sexual abuse by goblins at the clinic saying the goblins issue has been in existence since time immemorial. He said the problem is said to have been there for quite some time now although having become too prevalent now.
“Services are still fully offered at the clinic they would soon take it up with the relevant ministry.
“We are soon to engage relevant ministries as appointments have been done. Basically it is perplexing how Bulawayo service providers are sidelined, yet they service the city and the entire southern region. They ought to be considered and awarded first priority. It is not fair for them to be sidelined like this yet they have assisted although our nursing staff vacated the clinic because of these social problems. We have however, engaged local leadership to deal with the case so that nurses stay peacefully.
“This time a lot of reports have been forwarded by both patients, particularly expecting mothers, who come and stay at the clinic for a while waiting to deliver and staff members who live in the clinic,” he said.
Dr Muchara said the expecting mothers complain much with health workers and said they couldn’t stay there anymore.
“In consideration of the expecting mothers, we felt it was riskier for them to go back to their homes, hence, our decision to rather transfer them to St Luke’s Mission Hospital for their own protection. They will be accommodated there until the case at the clinic has been resolved.”
Meanwhile, Dlakapiya Primary School in various communities for many years,” said Mr Dube.
He noted that there had been several meetings about the issue. The Ministry of Public Service Labour and Social Welfare could not be reached for comment.
Health workers, expectant mothers vacate clinic over goblins sexual attack
Tsholotsho District failed to open as teachers fled from the school following attacks, mostly sexual, by suspected goblins. It is understood that the suspected goblins were attacking both female and male teachers.
Matabeleland North Provincial Education Director Mr Jabulani Mpofu said the school had not opened on opening week due to alleged goblin attacks which saw teachers returning to their homes after having arrived at the school on Sunday ahead of schools opening.
According to sources in the area, teachers reportedly would hear strange knocks on their doors, banging of tables as well as footsteps including on roofs with no one in sight. Villagers are in the meantime, putting up in the teachers’ cottages, guarding them from the mystery while they seek sangomas or prophets to clean the school.
Funeral parlours in Bulawayo are alleging corruption between the Social Welfare department and certain parlours in Harare