UK pledges development support

Britain is ready to help Zimbabwe alleviate some of the developmental challenges facing rural communities says a senior British diplomat.

From left Sarar Hulton, Richard Crooger and Trevour Saruwaka inspecting books at Bethania Secondery School.
From left Sarar Hulton, Richard Crooger and Trevour Saruwaka inspecting books at Bethania Secondery School.

After a recent tour of Mutasa, Sarah Hulton, the first secretary at the British embassy, said Zimbabwe had the potential to succeed in its rural development programmes.

Accompanied by the local MP, Trevour Saruwaka, Hulton visited Gonde Greens Irrigation Project, the Osborne Dam, Bethania Secondary School, St David’s Girls High School and Bonda Mission Hospital and the Bonda Mission Children’s Home.

“I have seen the projects and they have great potential. I was impressed by the commitment and zeal that has been shown by the people in the community in making sure that their projects become a success,” she said.

The Gonde Greens Irrigation Project, which requires $10,000 for a new water pump and pipes, is expected to benefit about 350 people in a single ward. The district suffers from perennial droughts.

Hulton pledged to follow-up on requests for additional help, while Saruwaka commended the embassy officials for the visit.

“I am very impressed that the (staff from the) British embassy came to my constituency. We have good relations with them though some in political circles view them as enemies,” said Saruwaka. “To us they are not enemies because they have helped us in many ways in improving our lives.”

Using the Constituency Development Fund Saruwaka procured a water pump for the site while the embassy fenced the 4.5 hectare plot that is set to be irrigated.

At Bethania Secondary school, two blocks are under construction using funds raised from school fees. The school needs four more blocks for the classrooms and administration offices. Because of the shortage of accommodation, some students are sharing space with pupils at the nearby Bethania Primary school. Hulton donated textbooks, pens, stationery, caps, and satchels to the school.

At Bonda Mission Hospital she held a meeting with management and toured various wards, before donating maize meal and sweets to orphans at the children’s home.

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