Zimbabwean broadcaster Zororo Makamba has become the first person in the southern African country to die from coronavirus.
Makamba, 30, was the second person in Zimbabwe to be diagnosed with the virus that has claimed more than 14,000 lives globally.
Zimbabwean businessman Mutumwa Mawere, who is based in South Africa, was the first person to break the news on Twitter and said, ” Mr Zororo Makamba, the son of Mr James Makamba has passed on. MHSRIP. I have just learned of this tragic loss of life due to the virus. A giant with so much potential has fallen. Corona is real. Let us pause and reflect. Life is too precious.”
The media personality, who was the son of prominent businessman James Makamba, had recently travelled to New York, which is considered the epicentre of the virus in the US. He was admitted to the Wilkins hospital in Harare after exhibiting symptoms of the virus shortly after his return. Zororo had an underlying health condition and had recently undergone surgery to remove a tumour in his chest.
So far three people have tested positive for the virus, although there are growing concerns that the Zimbabwean government is suppressing the number of people who may be affected. Meanwhile, Banc ABC Managing Director Lance Mambondiani has issued a statement and said that Zimbabwe’s second coronavirus patient, Zororo Makamba, visited BancABC’s Mount Pleasant branch on Tuesday 17 March 2020 and had a meeting with four staff members. The statement added: “Out of the abundance of caution, all employees who interacted with the patient and their contact persons were immediately identified for further management. Whilst none of the affected employees have shown any symptoms, preventative measures which include a 14 day self-quarantine, as per health officials guidelines, have been activated.”
'Death could have been avoided' "The government is ill prepared to deal with the virus," older brother Tawanda Makamba told the Daily News.
The health ministry said his pre-existing condition made him vulnerable to the disease. He had undergone surgery last November to remove a tumour from under his lung and was in recovery.
While his family admit that his immune system was compromised, they insist that his death could have been avoided.
Ventilators donated For decades Zimbabwe's health system has deteriorated. In many instances, public hospitals have had no running water and no pain killers. Doctors say they have sometimes been forced to wash and reuse bandages.
After Makamba's death, some private sector companies announced plans to establish isolation facilities at several idle private clinics. A rising star
Makamba started his media career at ZiFM Stereo, Zimbabwe’s first privately owned radio station where he hosted several current affairs programs. He graduated with a Master of Fine Arts in Producing, in Los Angeles, and spent a year working as News and Broadcasting Assistant at United Talent Agency (UTA), a global talent agency in New York. He also worked in telecoms, as a Public Relations Executive for Telecel Zimbabwe. In 2015 he made his television debut, pioneering the trend of online talk shows with the award winning show, Tonight with Zororo (TWZ), where he was the host and executive producer. TWZ won several accolades including the award for Outstanding Screen Production (Television) at the National Arts Merits Awards (NAMA). #ZororoMakamba #coronavirus #Covid19 #Zimbabwe