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Cholera claims 4

Four people have died since t h e outbreak of cholera, statistics from Karonga District Health Office indicates.
This comes at a time health activists in the country are blaming the government for what they call a lackadaisical approach to the outbreak.
However, on Thursday, Minister of Health, Atupele Muluzi, played down the outbreak saying the government has tamed the outbreak.
The cholera outbreak has so far hit Karonga, Kasungu, Nkhata Bay, Lilongwe, Dowa, and Chikwawa districts since the start of rainy season.
Red Cross Society Communications and Humanitarian Diplomacy Manager, Felix Washoni, said they are on the ground in Karonga and other parts of the country in response to the outbreak.
Washoni said Red Cross volunteers are on a door-to-door campaign sensitising communities about the dangers of the outbreak and how to avoid the disease.
“Let me mention that we are assisting in treatment centres where our volunteers are helping health workers in camp management. We have trained over 400 volunteers and 190 health surveillance assistants to help in the fight,” Washoni said.
Malawi Environmental Health Association, Malawi Health Equity Network and Health Rights Education Programme (HREP) have all observed that the yearly occurrence of the disease means that there is poor preparedness and dissemination of preventive messages about the disease.
HREP Executive Director Maziko Matemba in an earlier interview with our sister paper The Sunday Times said it was regrettable that Malawi is grappling with cholera in this era.
“The big question is that do we have focus? It is common knowledge that people are drinking contaminated water and this has been brought to the attention of the authorities several times. But it seems not much has been done to this issue seriously, hence the outbreaks,” he said.

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