MASVINGO – When Vice President Kembo Mohadi, in his capacity as the chairperson of the national Covid-19 taskforce, toured the Masvingo Provincial Hospital to assess the progress being made in the construction of an Intensive Care Unit (ICU) for Covid-19 patients in June last year, he was promised that the 21 bed structure would be completed in no time but the project has stalled at window level.
The ICU facility was said to be financed by Mimosa Mining Company while the army and prisons services provided artisans.
During the tour, Mohadi was told that the ICU would be the first of its kind in the province and was to cater for severe cases of coronavirus patients.
By then, Masvingo had recorded a few Covid-19 positive cases and there were no fatalities but seven months later, the province has witnessed a surge in positive cases with the latest provincial statistics as at January 18, 2021 putting Masvingo at a total cumulative cases of 1 310.
A total of 43 people have succumbed to Covid-19 in the province and total active cases stand at 349 as at January 18.
When contacted for comment Masvingo Provincial Medical Director (PMD) Dr Amadeus Shamhu said the ICU centre was nowhere near completion as work had been stalled by a number of issues mainly material.
“The ICU centre will not be finished any time soon, there is a lot of material that is not there for work to continue.
“If you get in touch with the public works engineers they will tell you exactly why there is no progress,” said Dr Shamhu.
Minister of State for Masvingo Provincial Affairs and Devolution Ezra Chadzamira, who is also the provincial chairperson of the Covid-19 taskforce could not be drawn into comment as his mobile went unanswered but in his previous interview with TellZim News, Chadzamira said that they were facing challenges to buy the required material but the money was there.
Presently, Masvingo is relying on a 10 bed isolation centre which was born out of Rujeko Clinic.