Published on 16th June 2016 by

Cholera Country 2009: drinking infected water and lack of medication are some of the reasons for death in Africa

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This is the deadliest cholera epidemic Africa has seen in fifteen years. The collapse of Zimbabwe’s basic infrastructures and rainy season floods mean the outbreak is spiralling out of control.

‘We have not had running water since April,’ says one mother. ‘We get water from wells and when it rains from the ditches. It’s dirty but we have no choice’. Brown water trickles from a rubbish heap covered in flies. Raw sewage flows directly into the water supply but people still drink infected water to survive. Causing severe diarrhoea and dehydration, cholera kills the weak and hungry within hours. Eighty thousand cases have been declared since August. Half have died. ‘My husband died because he did not receive proper medical treatment,’ says a young widow. Once the best in Africa, Zimbabwe’s healthcare system is overwhelmed. ‘He died because there was no money and there was no medication’.

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