Cor­rup­tion al­leged in fight for corpses

Sunday News (Zimbabwe) - - Front Page -

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

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