A Chipinge Town Council Environmental Health Officer (EHO) has been suspended for warning residents on a WhatsApp group of six serious potential cases of Corona Virus that the local authority is dealing with.
The Mirror is reliably informed that Shungu Masuku was suspended on Wednesday after she told residents to take Covid 19 seriously because there were cases of people who had entered Chipinge from South Africa and they had serious symptoms of Covid-19.
It is understood that the results of the six samples sent to Harare for tests are not yet known.
Masuku referred questions to her superiors at the local authority when asked for a comment.
Both the local authority secretary, Susan Dube and chairman Zivanai Nyakuchena professed ignorance over the matter.
The Mirror however understands that Masuku was suspended for divulging information that she had no authority to speak on.
Sources said, it is her defence that she sent out the statement because she ‘genuinely’ wanted to warn people to hid Government’s call to stay at home and to adhere to regulations to do with the pandemic.
The Mirror has seen the statement that Masuku sent on the group below.
“In Chipinge we are doing six contact cases whose names and addresses were given from our entry points. One is in Medium, one in Gaza and four in low density. Saka lets be on the alert people. Tinogona kunge tinayo Covid 19 muno muChipinge (We may serious have Covid 19 here in Chipinge). Vanhu stay at home ndapota. Dutu parinozopera vamwe vedu vanogona kushaikwa nekusateerera (Please stay at home. We may lose many people here because of this pandemic. Please take hid, don’t lose your life by failing to listen to this message). From EHO Chipinge Town Council.”
“This health officer clearly wanted to help her fellow countrymen and then overlooked the bounds of her work. She must have been moved by the level of complacency among residents over the pandemic and therefore wanted to give them real examples to prickle their conscience.
The statement is powerful in a situation where very little information on patterns and distribution of the pandemic is available,” said a source.