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January 11, 2015

Divorced Karoi taxi driver commits suicide

Filed under: News — Nhaudzenyu @ 12:28 pm
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By Nhau Mangirazi

A 31 year old taxi driver could not stomach divorce by his girlfriend committed suicide leaving behind grieved wife and another pregnant sixteen year old girl.
The late Frederick Mbereko drank tamaron pesticide on Tuesday morning and was found dead in his a Funcargo taxi near a Children’s Home a few meters from Karoi hospital.
Mbereko was dating a girlfriend identified as Idah Patience now at the centre of controversy who had divorced him.
He is survived by his wife and 5 year old child.

Women block a taxi with the late Frederick Mbereko's coffin......Photo By Nhau Mangirazi

Women block a taxi with the late Frederick Mbereko’s coffin……Photo By Nhau Mangirazi

Business came to a standstill in the farming town central business centre on Thursday lunch hour as his colleagues went on zigzagging at high speed hooting their car bells. They went around Chikangwe high density suburb before his body was ferried to Chibara under Chief Kazangarare 70 kilometers north of Karoi town for burial on Friday.
His brother Lameck Nyikadzino said that the family was in state of shock and disbelief.

 

 

‘’My late brother had a misunderstanding with his girlfriend after she decided to terminate their affair. We understand that he told her he could not withstand it. He jokingly asked his wife if she was prepared to look after their only child without giving a hint that he intended to kill himself. It is sad that he could not share this with us as family members or anyone before taking his life’’ said Nyikadzino.

Part of crowd at Chikangwe terminus during the late Frederick Mbereko's funeral procession....Photo By Nhau Mangirazi

Nyikadzino denied that there was another girlfriend linked to his late brother.
Idah went into hiding following the incident and did not answer her phone at the time of writing.
However, it has since been established that late Mbereko impregnated another 16 year old girl.
‘’It is true that I was in love with late Frederick but all I know is that he was under pressure from Idah who knew me to divorce me. We had not divorced yet but the two had misunderstandings during past few days. Frederick did not confide anything to me but I knew that they had challenges in their affair’’, said the heavily pregnant girl named X to protect her identity as a minor.

Mourners block a taxi carrying late Frederick Mbereko at Chikangwe bus terminus on Thursday... Photo By Nhau Mangirazi

Mourners block a taxi carrying late Frederick Mbereko at Chikangwe bus terminus on Thursday… Photo By Nhau Mangirazi

Mashonaland West provincial spokesperson Inspector Clemency Mabgweazara said he was out of office since Thursday and could not comment on the matter.
‘’Unfortunately I am out of office and cannot comment now’’ said the police spokesperson at the weekend.
There have an upsurge of men committing suicide over their differences driven by jealousy.

January 7, 2015

UK doctors empower women on cervical cancer

Filed under: News — Nhaudzenyu @ 9:52 am
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By Nhau Mangirazi

KAROI-Two United Kingdom based medical doctors were in the country to assist some women on cervical cancer screening last week here.

The two are Doctors Tsitsi Chituku and her friend Fadzai Kanyangarara spent two days in Karoi where they assisted women on health matters and later screened them for cervical cancer, one of the non-communicable diseases affecting mostly developing countries including Zimbabwe.

Doctors Fadzai Kanyangarara and Tsitsi Chituku in Karoi assisting women on free cervical screening

Doctors Fadzai Kanyangarara and Tsitsi Chituku in Karoi assisting women on free cervical screening

They live in Kettering, Northampton shire, United Kingdom.

Kanyangarara said they were overwhelmed by the response by the women who were eager to learn more on health matters.

‘’The response was inspirational and we are grateful to the community. We wanted to empower women on health matters as this will help the society in the long run. Generally, women were eager to learn more on health issues. It is encouraging that we are already focusing to have this as an annual event and we have to mobilize more human resources for the next edition’’, said Kanyangarara.

Chituku hails from Karoi town and said it was the little they could do to give back to the community.

Some women waiting for their turn during cervical cancer screening in Karoi

Some women waiting for their turn during cervical cancer screening in Karoi

There is room to raise awareness on health matters and Karoi was our port of call for this project that we think will improve with time’’ added Chituku.

The two doctors assisted in high blood pressure, breast and cancer screening where at least 124 women were screened during the two day exercise.

38 year old Muchaneta Yawera said the move was welcome for women in the farming town.

‘’It is good for us during the New Year as we are assured of good health status. Knowing your status on disease is not a death penalty but you know what you must avoid or better knowledge of survival.   Health is a right for everyone, said Yawera, a mother of two children.

A male nurse asssting women at Chikangwe clinic during cerivical cancer awareness and screening while Doctor Tsitsi Chituku looks on

A male nurse assisting women at Chikangwe clinic during cervical cancer awareness and screening while Doctor Tsitsi Chituku looks on

Leading cause of death

Cervical cancer accounts for one-third of all cancer cases in Zimbabwe and is the leading cause of cancer deaths among Zimbabwean women according to Better Healthcare for Africa.

According to World Cancer Research Fund International

, Malawi leads the top twenty with the highest rate of cervical cancer, in 2012 pegged at 75.9 percent while Zimbabwe is placed fifth with 56.4 percent.

World Health Organization says cervical cancer is the commonest cancer among sub-Saharan African women.

January 6, 2015

Hurungwe drop outs dent Zimbabwe education star

Filed under: Feature — Nhaudzenyu @ 9:29 am
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By Nhau Mangirazi

HURUNGWE- Fourteen year old *Tendai Marenga is Form One drop out from a resettlement school near Tengwe farming community after she eloped to be a house wife late last year.

*Marita Tarembera aged fifteen from Zvimonja under Chief Mudzimu 85 kilometers out of Karoi town is now a mother of six month old daughter after dropping out of school and was married off by her guardians who did not have enough maize to last them till next farming season.

These scenarios aptly explain the gloomy reality gripping Hurungwe, one of the country districts facing highest school dropouts aiding ‘’repellent statistics in Zimbabwe education sector’’

The district has estimated population of 361 370 of which 187 160 are females and 174 210 are males from 85 668 households according to 2012 Zimbabwe National Statistical results.

There are 168 secondary schools with an estimated enrollment of 83 572, where 92 primary schools have estimated 21 926 students annually.

Sad oracle

However, Marita’s story is a sad oracle of social and economic ills affecting rural outskirts denting Zimbabwe education star in Hurungwe, Mashonaland West province. Poverty is a driving force to some of the child marriages according to villagers here.

According to the district statistics recorded in 2013, 8 438 completed Grade Seven where 4 223 girls and 4270 boys.

However, 3 143 girls went to Form One marking 26 percent drop out and another 35 percent before completing Form Four.

Unjustified marriages

Research and Advocacy Unit, RAU, an independent body reveals that poverty, traditional beliefs and teenage sex are major reasons for early child marriages in the country.

According to findings under Married too soon in Zimbabwe, these fuel high drop outs in mostly rural set ups in the country.

‘’It is normal for a 14 year girl to be married and drop out of school. Some parents take marriage as a mitigation factor for failure to pay school fees due to economic challenges. This impacts negatively on education sector’, admits headman Richard Mangwaira of Chivakanenyama village, 45 kilometers west of Karoi town. He says traditionally they cannot overlook parental approval of such cases.

‘’Culturally parents have the monopoly over their children and we cannot impose laws to bar them from accepting lobola at a cost‘’, adds headman Mangwaira.

Fragmented laws

Zimbabwe fragmented laws are the missing link to curb child marriages as they protect girl child only on paper as dual legal system is used while customary law is overused in the country.

For example the Children and Protection and adoption act defines child as anyone below the age of 18 while the constitution grants marriage to who is 18 years old and above.

Ironically, Marriage act chapter 5.11 sets marriageable age at 18 for boys and 16 for girls.

Credit for President Mugabe

Ironically, President Robert Mugabe is credited for uplifting the nation’s population in health, education among other social sectors since 1980 independence.

Currently, Zimbabwe leads Africa as education with best literacy rate according to The African Economist 2014 June survey pegging Zimbabwe at 90.7 percent followed by Equatorial Guinea at 87 % while South Africa is placed third at 86 percent.

Overturning gains

However, the achievements may be reversed if Hurungwe remains neglected, overturning the gains to empower girls currently affecting Malawi, Mozambique Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Hurungwe is among the four rampant areas where child marriages are rampant including Chiredzi, Binga and Muzarabani as 65 % of rural girls are married or impregnated by the age of 19.

Mashonaland Central tops with 50 percent of its population while Mashonaland West is pegged second with 42 percent.

Source of hope

Empowering innocent souls...Deputy minister of Higher and Tertiary Education and Technology Development Deputy-Minister Doctor Godfrey Gandawa with zero grades at Katenhe rural in Hurungwe. Photo By Nhau Mangirazi

Empowering innocent souls…Deputy minister of Higher and Tertiary Education and Technology Development Deputy-Minister Doctor Godfrey Gandawa with zero grades at Katenhe rural in Hurungwe. Photo By Nhau Mangirazi

Campaign for Female Education, Camfed established by American scholar Ann Cotton in 1993 came as a source of hope to empower rural girls in Mola under Kariba district where 32 girls were sponsored initially. Currently, it is supporting 35 000 girls in Zimbabwe 28 districts including Hurungwe.

Regionally, Camfed is assisting children in Malawi, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi and Zimbabwe paying school fees, uniforms and other needs.

Stopping the rot

Regional director Angeline Murimirwa, a beneficiary of the program admits that drop outs is a challenge but will never deter them.

‘’It is unfortunate that some perpetrators are girl’s guardians including teachers and male relatives at times. Hatidi makudo anodya munda takatarisa meaning they will not tolerate sexual abuse on girl child calling for jailing of perpetrators’’, Murimirwa adds.

‘’Naturally girls face sexual abuse, says Murimirwa an international education icon on children rights.

Government to blame

Some teachers and parents blame Government for marginalizing Hurungwe, an agricultural productive district in the country.

‘’Drop outs are a menace as this will reverse gains invested in education sector’’, bitter Collin Magara under Chief Kazangarare about 60 kilometers north of Karoi town says.

Health issue

Rau report adds that early marriages are detrimental to health and wellbeing of girl child.

’’Child marriages can also result in bonded labour or enslavement, commercial sexual exploitation and violence against the victims. Because they cannot abstain from sex or insist on condom use, child brides are often exposed to such serious health risks as premature pregnancy, sexually transmitted infections, and, increasingly, HIV/AIDS’’

As Zimbabwe celebrates its literacy rate pole position in Africa policy makers, traditional leaders, police and judiciary among others face the challenge to change perspective on rural girl child.

Only then, will Zimbabwe observe its shining star status with easy.

*Names changed to protect minors’ identities

January 5, 2015

Fugitive hubby faces attempted murder charges   

Filed under: News — Nhaudzenyu @ 7:52 am
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Dhlamini in Karoi hospital in November-

Dhlamini in Karoi hospital in November-

By Our Staff

A Karoi man Maxwell Vhakacha who fled after ripping his wife whom he suspected of adultery with a local guy appeared in court last week.

Vhakacha aged 43 years was lured by his wife for ten years whom he suspected of dating other men.

It is the state case that Vhakacha was staying with Annastancia Dhlamini for the past years and on 10 November last year; he attacked her using a kitchen knife after he spotted her speaking to Pfungwa Kaharo.

However, following the domestic violence that left Dhlamini hospitalized for three weeks, Vhakacha was on the run and was holed up in Beitbridge.

He was lured back by his wife on Christmas eve and a trap was set up as he was arrested while at the wife lodgings.

Vhakacha appeared before magistrate Sam Chitumwa who remanded him in custody and advised him to apply for bail from the High court.

Dhlamini on her hospital bed in Karoi at the weekend

Dhlamini on her hospital bed in Karoi at the weekend

The Weekly Mirror broke the story in November and has photos of the injured Dhlamini.

8 perish in Kadoma as twenty are marooned in Chikuti

Filed under: Uncategorized — Nhaudzenyu @ 7:42 am

By Nhau Mangirazi

CHINHOYI Eight family members perished when a driver tried to cross a flooded bridge near Kadoma on Friday,

The bodies were recovered trapped in a car on Saturday according to police confirmation at the weekend.

National police spokesperson Senior Assistant Commissioner Charity Charamba told the State controlled Sunday Mail that the deceased bodies were recovered along Battlefield Turf road where the driver tried to cross flooded Ngwazani River Bridge that had been submerged by water.

The bodies were recovered after the driver did not take heed of calls not to cross the flooded bridge, Charamba is quoted as saying.

Names of the deceased were identified as Nomatter Ndodo aged 40, Magneta Musani Ndodo aged 26, Tawananyasha Ndodo aged 2, Edes Musariri aged 33, Benedict Mhande aged 9, Catherine Mhande aged 4, Chris Mhande aged 20 and Ngonidzashe Gavi.

However, twenty people were marooned at Chikuti and two people were swept away, according to state broadcaster on Saturday.

Stranded commuters at Chikuti river on Saturday

Stranded commuters at Chikuti river on Saturday

A marroned truck at Chikuti river

A marooned truck at Chikuti river

Commuters were stranded near Chikuti and Lion’s Den following the flooded rivers forcing many to sleep along the way.

Sources said they spent over 10 hours stranded waiting for the water to calm down.

‘’It was hard to pass through as there was water everywhere. Two police officer who were controlling the traffic were overwhelmed on Saturday’’, said Jonasi Mataka who said they only managed to make it on Sunday morning from Lion’s Den on their way from Harare.

‘’We were forced to spend the night in a queue as there was no way out’’ added Melody Takaendesa of Mjinga.

Mashonaland West Civil Protection Unit chairman Christopher Shumba confirmed that the two people had survived the turbulent waters and everything was now under control.

Hurungwe floods part of rescue team trying to assist a marooned long truck at the weekend Photos by Nhau Mangirazi
Hurungwe floods part of rescue team trying to assist a marooned long truck at the weekend
Photos by Nhau Mangirazi

‘’We are working hard to have water banks opened by Zimbabwe National Water Authority as a matter of urgency as the persistent rains are affecting the province’’ said Shumba

January 3, 2015

Baptism of Fire Director named provincial Human Rights Defender

Filed under: News — Nhaudzenyu @ 9:40 am
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Baptism of Fire Director Skumbuzo Sibanda was named Mashonaland West provincial Human Rights Defender of the 2014

Baptism of Fire Director Skumbuzo Sibanda was named Mashonaland West provincial Human Rights Defender of the 2014

By Nhau Mangirazi

Baptism of Fire director, Skumbuzo Sibanda was nominated as Mashonaland West provincial human rights defender at an event hosted in Bulawayo late last year.

Sibanda shrugged off stiff competition from many human rights defenders forced to operate undercover due to the hostility by some misinformed State agencies who believe that “human rights issues are part of regime change agenda by some Non Governmental Organizations working in cahoots with opposition parties“

Sibanda got a floating trophy and some cash for the sponsor Norwegian People Aid.

The 46 year old Hurungwe actor, health, women and children rights advocate says he is inspired that the communities understand the role of human rights defenders.

“We used theatre as part of human rights promotion and we are part of watchdogs of human rights violations that were rampant within Mashonaland West. All we were doing was to remain committed to share, alerting them on their rights. We engaged some policy makers including councilors, traditional leaders and some residents on service delivery and it is working as a human rights issue” said Sibanda in an interview.

He added that their thrust as human rights defenders is appreciated by the fact that they have been doing this as part of community service.

Human rights part of community development

“Human rights must be part of community development and we have been keeping citizens informed on their rights to vote, attend public meetings, rights to be heard as well as protection. Though perpetrators of violence used to target us, the accusations were baseless as we remain apolitical. A human right remains a right to everyone as everyone is equal in terms of law“ he added.

Perseverance paid for Sibanda and Baptism of Fire theatre group groomed by Zimrights in the late 1990s engaged in theatre for development and ever since the group has been travelling around the country on HIV and AIDS, maternal health, malaria, women and children rights among other topical issues affecting the communities.

Do not violate the law

His parting words to upcoming human rights defenders, Sibanda said, “Human rights must not violate the law, those who want to hold public meetings must seek police clearance as required by the law. As human rights defenders we must avoid double standards and be political activists. We must have the passion not to gain financially but serve the communities to get respect from them. It is not fulltime employment as watchdogs of human rights violations on everyone regardless of their political affiliation“

Baptism of Fire hosted inaugural Hurungwe Arts Festival in November that was a major success as it drew artists from Bulawayo, Kadoma, Harare and locals who showcased drama plays, traditional dances, poetry and some jokes from Uncle Richie, Nqobile Malinga among others.

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