Mzimba District Health Officer (DHO) Lumbani Munthali has decried delays to construct a new guardian shelter at Mzimba District Hospital, saying M’mbelwa District Council is too slow in implementing projects.
In an interview, Munthali said the council is slow in funding the project.
Presently, over 80 guardians occupy a dilapidated and unsanitary two-room shelter with no running water, kitchen and bathrooms.
The latrines and rubbish pit at the facility are full.
The district health office asked the council to allocate K24 million from the Constituency Development Fund (CDF) for construction of a new facility estimated to cost K40 million.
Said Munthali: “We have been talking about this issue for a long time during council meetings, but the implementation is very slow. As a hospital, we are concerned because the current shelter is unhealthy and overcrowded. We are putting lives of the guardians at a big risk of waterborne diseases and illnesses resulting from poor hygiene.”
District commissioner Thomas Chirwa said he was not aware of any progress because he is outside the country.
However, in an earlier interview, Chirwa said the project will start once money was available.
The hospital serves a population of about 608 000 people. n