Joshua Nkomo legacy hospital is still to open

HARARE - Some of the wishes of the late vice president Joshua Mqabuko Nkomo are finding no takers as witnessed by the Ekusileni Medical Centre in Bulawayo which has been lying idle for the past 17 years.

It had been reported ad-infinitum that the hospital “will open soon” but it is now almost two decades before this could become a reality.

Most recent reports now claim that the centre would open its doors on January 1, 2019 following the engagement of an Indian Investor, Sharda Group of Institutions (SGI).

In the latest economic blueprint, the Transitional Stabilisation Programme (TSP) the Finance ministry has indicated that the hospital would be opened in two phases to be rolled in 2019 and 2020.

Nkomo’s son Sibangilizwe told the Daily News last week that there have been many false starts for the hospital with government failing to fulfil its promises.

He said the Nkomo family is worried that Umdala Wethu’s vision is not being taken seriously.

Ekusileni Hospital, the brainchild of the late vice president, remains closed since its construction in 2001.

“It’s news to me that the hospital will be opening in January next year; in fact it has not been communicated to the family,” the late Father Zimbabwe’s son said.

“The last we heard was that the hospital was going to be opened on July 1 this year and when the day came nothing happened.

“No explanation was given to us as to why the hospital failed to open.”

Nkomo said he had learnt about the Indian investor being involved in the hospital project during President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s visit at the institution in June this year.

“We were at the hospital on June 23, with the President, the minister of Health and several other government officials.

“We were told (again) that an Indian investor was going to facilitate the opening of the hospital and it would start functioning by July 31,” he said.

Nkomo said his family is disgruntled by the delay in the opening of the institution, a legacy left behind by his father.

“We feel terrible, they are not taking the vision of the old man further; what he stood for will forever be lost.

“It’s a worrying situation that people don’t take Umdala Wethu seriously,” he said.

Contacted for comment on plans to open the medical centre next year, Nyasha Masuka the chairperson of the team overseeing the institution referred all questions to the Health minister,  Obadiah Moyo.

“You can talk to the new minister. Everything was handed over to him,” he said.

Moyo was not able to comment as he was said to be in a meeting.

Government, under its TSP has indicated that Ekusileni Hospital will be opened in January next year.

According to reports, the hospital will be offering emergency health care before reverting to its core mandate of being the country’s specialist institution.

SGI is set to run Ekusileni Medical Centre and in July they visited the facility expressing satisfaction with its infrastructure.

They said they would start equipping the hospital before starting operations.

Comments (2)

What happened to the ranch Umdala purchased for hospitals trust ?....I know some rich white dude assumed tenancy on part of the ranch possibly free of charge , janu beejeenes , the ranch that had potential to generate US$200Mn of revenues for the nation a year. Minda tinoida as hatiikwanise.

Mwenesi - 26 November 2018

I am sure something can be done , its not too late . We don't need a foreign investor. Icha tangwa panyowani....

JMN Neuroscience hospital - 26 November 2018

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