Philanthropist and Econet Wireless founder, Strive Masiyiwa has made a commitment to mobilize funds to support and fully equip maternity wards at major referral hospitals to stop high infant mortality at childbirth.
Masiyiwa’s reaction was influenced by recent media reports that seven out of eight babies were dying in one night at one of the country’s largest referral hospitals due to unavailability of personnel.
Masiyiwa highlighted on his social media that few weeks back, BBC News service ran a story which shocked the world and his wife and daughters cried openly.
“I told them that we must focus our attention on doing what we can to help, as philanthropists which is why we set up Higherlife Foundation 25 years ago.
“Fast Forward (to today): We have now mobilized funds, mostly from our international friends, as well as our own resources. We intend to immediately support the seven national referral hospitals that deliver 90% of the babies in Zimbabwe,” he said.
Masiyiwa said he has put in place a programme to support midwives and other employees working at maternity facilities.
“The programme is similar to our support for doctors. This is a private initiative. It is totally voluntary, and we are working directly with anyone interested in working with us. Hopefully, as we roll out this programme, this type of thing will not happen again,” said Masiyiwa.