14 children drown

Recent cases of 14 children drowning in rivers and unprotected wells have raised concern among child rights groups.

Police have confirmed that two children drowned in a river in rural Chiweshe in Mashonaland Central under unclear circumstances.

Another two drowned in a river in Chipinge in April and 10 toddlers have died in unprotected wells in separate incidents in at Caledonia, a poor settlement set up to provide accommodation to victims of Murambatsvina, a 2005 cleanup operation that displaced thousands.

Meanwhile, a recent medical report has revealed that an average of 100 children under five years of age are dying every day in Zimbabwe, mostly due to preventable causes before and during the first month after birth.

The Global Systematic Analysis of National Causes of Child Mortality 2010 report suggests that approximately 10 799 newborn babies die annually in Zimbabwe due to inadequate medical services unhygienic conditions in which most poor mothers live.

“Only through consistent and ongoing economic development and infrastructural growth can these circumstances be addressed,” said Elfas Shangwa, National Director of the Defence for Children International Zimbabwe.

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