THE country’s Covid-19 response and health services got a shot in arm after India and the Africa development bank handed over 20 ambulances to government while the first batch of 100 ambulances secured by the government will arrive end of next month.
The 20 state of the art fully equipped ambulances were handed to the Vice President who is also the Minister of Health and Child Care, Retired General Dr Constantino Chiwenga by Indian ambassador to Zimbabwe Vijay Khanduja and Africa Development Bank country representative Dr Moona Mutopola at a function held at Sally Mugabe Central hospital this Thursday.
“It is my Honour and privilege to handover 10 state of the art ambulances as a gift from India to Zimbabwe which have been promised during a visit by India Vice President in 2018,” says Ambassador Khanduja.
“We have mobilized these 10 ambulances which we are donating through the World Health Organization (WHO) as our implementation partner to support Zimbabwe in the fight against Covid-19. On top of the ambulances we are handing over a consignment of an assortment of medical materials for Covid-19 response under the 15 million US$ funding extended to Zimbabwe by AFDB,” said Dr Mutopola.
In his acceptance speech Rtd General Chiwenga expressed gratitude to India, AFDB and WHO for the gesture.
He was quick to implore ZINARA and IPEC to come on board by buying ambulances for servicing highway emergencies.
“I want to implore Zinara and IPEC to buy ambulances and establish ambulances bases at all toll gates rather than just collecting motorist money. The third party funds should benefit people so IPEC should also avail funds towards ambulances services,” said the Vice President.
Dr Chiwenga also outlined the health services trajectory which will see the first batch of 100 ambulances secured by government arriving next month while air ambulances services have been introduced to deal with any nature of medical emergencies. – ZBC