By Kudzai Chikiwa/ Sukulwenkosi Dube-Matutu
The National Railways of Zimbabwe (NRZ) is offering free transport to Manicaland from Bulawayo and Harare starting from today to all companies and organisations intending to donate to Cyclone Idai victims.
Speaking during a ceremony to unveil goods worth $20 000 bought by the parastatal in Bulawayo yesterday, NRZ General Manager Engineer Lewis Mukwada said they were providing free rail transport to Mutare for corporates and groups who have mobilised donations in Bulawayo and Harare.
He said NRZ employees are also donating to cyclone victims.
“While NRZ has a corporate social responsibility (CSR) charter to exercise its corporate citizenship, the situation in the Eastern and Southern parts of the country has enjoined us to work beyond our programmed CSR. We are offering this transport to lessen the burden on corporates as well as the Government,” Eng Mukwada said.
He said the NRZ has availed space measuring 2 700 square metres in Harare to store mobilised goods awaiting transportation to Manicaland Province.
Eng Mukwada urged corporates and groups to contact the NRZ if they have goods that they want to be transported.
“In addition to our transport commitment, the organisation is donating 20 tonnes of mealie meal, one tonne of sugar beans, 15 boxes of stay free sanitary wear, at least 20 kilogrammes of blankets, clothes and kitchen utensils from our partner RMS,” he said.
Meanwhile, Matabeleland South Province has donated RTGS $10 000 cash, clothing and groceries to cyclone victims.
Speaking last week during a handover of the donated items to Swift Company in Gwanda for transportation to Manicaland Province, Matabeleland South Provincial Affairs Minister Cde Abednico Ncube said three districts in the province had submitted their contributions so far and the remaining four were still to submit.
He said the donations had been contributed by individuals from the province, churches, companies and members of the business community.
“As Matabeleland South Province we organised people in all our seven districts to make contributions towards assisting victims of Cyclone Idai in Manicaland Province. We have received donations from three districts namely Gwanda, Umzingwane and Insiza. The remaining four districts Bulilima, Beitbridge, Mangwe and Matobo are yet to submit their donations.
“We received RTGS $10 000 cash from How Mine Company and 400 by 10kg bags of mealie-meal from PPC Company. We also received groceries which comprise soap, cooking oil, water, sugar and clothing from various stakeholders. This is the second batch of donations that is being sent as some goods were sent to the victims last week,” Cde Ncube said.
He appealed to people to continue making contributions as affected families were still in need of assistance.
“I would like to thank the people of Matabeleland South who have made contributions towards assisting Cyclone Idai victims. This is a sign that we are united as a country. This disaster might have affected Manicaland Province but it’s the duty of all of us to assist as Manicaland is in Zimbabwe and we are all fellow citizens. For those who haven’t contributed I urge them to do something to help our fellow brothers and sisters in need,” Cde Ncube said. The Chronicle