28 people have been confirmed dead in Zimbabwe’s cholera outbreak, state media said on Sunday, as the Health Minister announced new antibiotics were being used after the disease strain was found to be resistant to some drugs.
The Cholera Outbreak was first discovered in a township outside the capital, Harare earlier this month, prompted the government to declare an emergency in the city after 3000 cases were reported.
“Although I cannot say we have contained the disease yet, we are moving swiftly in all provinces in the country,” health minister Obadiah Moyo told Sunday Mail correspondents.
“We have moved into the second line of antibiotics, which is azithromycin after the first line of antibiotics-ciprofloxacin and ceftriaxone-have become resistant to the disease.”
Moyo said rubbish dump would be removed from high-risk areas of the capital, street vendors have been ordered to halt operations and sewer pipes would be repaired.
Authorities have placed a ban on public gatherings which made opposition party MDC cancel a major rally scheduled to hold on Saturday.
Newly-appointed Minister of Finance launched a crowd-funding effort to raise money to fight the outbreak, publicizing bank details on social media and soliciting for donations.
Cholera outbreaks have occurred regularly in Zimbabwe as authorities struggle to provide sanitation facilities and potable water.
The country which was ruled by Robert Mugabe from independence in 1980 until his ousting last year, suffered its worst cholera outbreak in 2008.
A total of 4000 deaths were recorded and 100,000 people fell ill.
UNICEF urged Zimbabweans to prevent cholera from spreading by regular hand-washing, drinking only safe water, washing food, cooking thoroughly, and avoiding shaking hands.