Cholera kills over 100 in TZ, gov’t earmarks Tsh 900 m to combat the deadly disease

Dire living conditions in refugee camps have compounded the Cholera problem

Dire living conditions in refugee camps have compounded the Cholera problem

The death toll from the Cholera epidemic which resurfaced in August this year in Tanzania now stands at 106, according to Dr. Mary Kitambi, principal medical officer of Emergency Preparedness and Response Section in the Ministry of Health and Social Welfare.

The outbreak of the waterborne disease throws an unwelcome spotlight on inadequate access to clean water and sanitation, particularly in the country’s impoverished communities in urban and rural areas.

A report by the the ministry indicates that water supplied by State owned utility –Dar es Salaam Water and Sewerage Corporation (Dawasco) is not safe for domestic use.

According to the report 70 percent of the 400 million litres of water supplied by the utility to the over 5 million residents in Dar es Salaam is not recommended for use unless purified.

To compound the problem, it says only 15 percent of the population in the city has access to proper sewerage systems.

The ministry says the government has struggled to contain the Cholera outbreak citing the population has been resisting treatment.

The medical official said at least 17 regions have been affected by the outbreak, covering a total of 39 districts.

Speaking at a media workshop Saturday, Victoria Bula, Dar es Salaam Acting Medical Superintendent revealed that since the reoccurrence of the deadly disease two months ago, 53 people have been reported dead in Dar es Salaam.

She said while there were positive progress in Kinondoni Municipal, with only one case reported, Ilala and Temeke had reported increasing number of inpatients standing at 11 and 39 respectively.

A water, sanitation and hygiene expert at the ministry, Theophil Likangaga highlighted the need to improve water and sanitation if the East African nation is to stem the outbreak.

Dr Janet Mgamba, a member of surveillance team in the ministry of health said the government through the prime minister’s office has released a whopping Tsh 900 million Cholera fighting efforts across the country.

The epidemic was also reported in Burundian refugee camps earlier this year, Tanzania is host to more than 20,000 refugees from neighbouring conflict-torn nation