IN a development that is likely to have a major bearing on the health delivery system in Chipinge, the only remaining doctor in the area has been forced to abandon her patients after bein
g chased off her farm.
Speaking at a function to mark German national day on Monday, Karin Blumberger-Sauertieg, the German ambassador to Zimbabwe, announced that the only doctor in the eastern town had left.
Blumberger-Sauertieg expressed concern at the deteriorating economic situation in the country.
“Last week the only doctor in Chipinge, German national Dr Petra Clowes, was chased away from her home and her patients,” Blumberger-Sauertieg told guests.
Although she did not tell her audience who had evicted Petra from Chipinge, it has since emerged that Clowes was the wife of a farm manager on one of the estates.
“As long-standing friends of Zimbabwe we cannot hide our great concerns about the present situation and the difficulties Zimbabwe is facing and we would like to express our hopes that all men and women in Zimbabwe will again be able to enjoy the welfare and the wellbeing they deserve and the wisdom and dedication of their leaders in order to achieve this aim,” she said.
She reminded her audience that Lutheran Protestants were celebrating the 30th anniversary of the foundation of the Lutheran Church in Harare with its motto: “Be tolerant with one another.”
“What a wonderful guideline for all Zimbabweans – whatever their political orientation, whatever the colour of their skin – in the spirit of dialogue and mutual respect,” the ambassador said.
She commented on the presence of German products in the country but lamented their gross underutilisation, especially vehicles. She said: “The label ‘Made in Germany’ stands for experience on the world’s markets and top quality products. I am happy to see so many fast German cars on Zimbabwean streets – unfortunately there is not enough fuel to keep them running,” Blumberger-Sauertieg said.
“Since Independence the German taxpayer contributed more than 1 billion euros for bilateral and multilateral programmes. Until recently my country was the third largest trading partner.”
She noted that today, the people from her country wrote one of the “most beautiful chapters” in history after they defeated a vile dictatorship and won their fight for freedom.
She said German reunification in 1989 marked the end of the cold war, which changed Europe as Germany turned from a frontline state to a position in the heart of Europe.
“Without our neighbours and friends we would never have achieved it. West Germany brought us a positive contribution to unification – its close integration in the western community of values, solid democratic institutions and economic power while East Germany brought with it an overwhelming desire for transformation and change,” she said.
“Today, not all the problems are solved, unemployment is still high, but our country has a good name in the world: it stands for hard work and organisational talent; for a great cultural nation and its masterworks.”