By Misheck Rusere -Zimbabwe’s Maternal Health delivery system has been dealt a major blow after the Japanese government through its Embassy re-scheduled the grant signing ceremony that was due to take place today (Friday) at the UNICEF offices in Harare.
The Japanese Ambassador to Zimbabwe Koichi Morita said because of the tragical developments taking place in his home country, his embassy was no longer going to carry out any international commitments as he had received communication from Tokyo. “I have received communication from my Minister in Tokyo, to suspend all international commitments as the government is currently trying to take care of the situation back home,” said Morita.
The Brave Ambassador Morita delivered his apology speech in tears as he moaned the tragedy affecting his country, he breathed hard, whipped and words could hardly come out of his mouth in front of some invited guests who had gathered to witness the grant signing ceremony, a moment of silence was then observed.
The Japanese government was to donate a whooping US $10 million to UNICEF and the Ministry of Health and Child Welfare in assisting Zimbabwe achieve Millennium Development Goals numbers 4 and 5, that is reducing the under 5 years mortality rate by two thirds by the year 2015 and the improvement of maternal health respectively.
In an interview Ambassador Morita said his country had no choice but rely on the nuclear energy as it provides about two thirds of his country’s power. “What I can tell you is that the country is in a very serious problem right now there is no electricity, clean drinking water, and telephone communication as all these systems have been affected in the affected areas. “We don’t have much resources in Japan and nuclear plants provide about two thirds of the country’s total power generation,” he said
He however said the affected nuclear reactors had been shut down and that no nuclear generation was taking place in Japan in the mean time. “I can assure you that the nuclear reactors in question have been shut-down and no nuclear-chain is taking place as you are aware, the explosions that occurred were brought about by chemical reactions and have nothing to do with nuclear fissile reactions,” he said in a statement.
Morita thanked the people of Zimbabwe for sympathizing with the Japanese government saying thousands of condolence massages had reached his office from Zimbabweans. An 8.9 magnitude earthquake and a 10 meter high tsunami wave hit North Eastern Japan at 2.46pm on Friday March 11. At this moment the scale of devastation is still not completely clear, but thousands of people have died and hundreds of thousands are affected. The disaster is the worst in Japan in more than 140 years.