Toilet at the paediatric ward
Toilet at the paediatric ward

50 years after independence, these are pictures of the ablution facilities at Ward A05 in the Paediatrics Wing of the University Teaching Hospital, the nation’s largest health facility. A05 is an isolation ward where children with contagious diseases such as typhoid are kept.

Because water is only available about half of the day, you can see for yourself the disaster that happens in the toilets and bathroom. Imagine a mother taking her sick child with diarrhoea into those filthy toilets and putting them on a toilet without a seat or cistern cover. The doors do not even close for privacy so I wonder how our mothers use them. Meanwhile the floor is dirty and has water all over. It seems this ward is there to spread diseases instead of keeping them in check.

If you are using a potty for a young child, imagine the hassle of cleaning it and being forced to handle those containers in those white bins which have been touched by so many people who may not observe proper hygiene. The bathroom cannot even lock and has broken tiles on the wall.

Other Wards like A03 and A04 are also a disaster. They routinely put 3 babies on the same bed. Imagine all the cross infections going on. The admissions ward and high cost wards are at least a little better but have no working air conditioners and no facilities for our mothers to rest. Even there, ablution facilities are bad.

Meawhile, just 50 meters away, there is a huge tank which looks like it can store enough water to supply the entire hospital. The obvious questions here are:

  1. Why is UTH apparently not using the big water tank? If it is inadequate, why hasn’t UTH built a new one, considering that they are busy constructing new buildings at UTH at great cost but failing to construct new water tanks?
  2. If they found money to build brand new buildings at UTH, why can’t they fix all the existing toilets and bathrooms first which is a tiny cost comparatively?
  3. Why does the lab and pharmacy close at 16:00 hours and over weekends?

Sometimes I wonder why we even boast of being independent for 50 years but fail to solve basic problems.

Michael Chishala
Concerned Citizen

Paediatric ward ablution
Paediatric ward ablution
Toilet at the paediatric ward
Toilet at the paediatric ward
Bathtub in the paediatric ward
Bathtub in the paediatric ward
Paediatric ward ablution
Paediatric ward ablution
Paediatric ward ablution
Paediatric ward ablution
Large water tank sitting idle that could potential supply the entire hospital with water
Large water tank sitting idle that could potential supply the entire hospital with water
A crack at one of the wards that has cut through the entire thickness of the wall and extending from top to bottom.
Imminent collapse? A crack at one of the wards at UTH that has cut through the entire thickness of the wall and extending from top to bottom.
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16 COMMENTS

  1. You cant build something so huge unless you can maintain it. If you cant hand it to those who can maintain it otherwise it becomes a stinky ghetto which you pretend is not there. I heard Kaunda one time promise us that he would make UTH the centre of all medical research in Africa

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    • No.1 above is correct – the tragedy of the post-colonial Zambian State has been the failure to maintain infrastructure (and standards), both inherited in 1964 and those after that. Herein lies the problem: can Zambia maintain standards, if so, how, if not, why not?

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  2. Dear Mr Michael Chishala
    This is the Zambia we have chosen. Almost like all of us have gone insane. The Government keeps reminding us daily here how they are building brand new schools. But if you go with your camera to Munali Secondary School and do the same thing you have done with it, you will be shocked. Toilets are non-functional, “roads” leading into and out of the school are like plowed surfaces, water supply is very erratic and teachers are demoralized. Yet this is the school where Mr Kaunda was educated at. Quite frankly the facilities are far below those of North East Elementary School where my son started his schooling from. And we keep being reminded of how we should go and celebrate 51 years of independence. Pictures speak louder. Zambian leaders should in fact be called…

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  3. Its because we are building a car park iwe, cant you see that in infrastructure development we get kick backs in order to sustain our political survival? how much qwagu do u think i and ba mwine will get from fixing a toilet? grow up man

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  4. Is this when you are realizing that UTH is pathetic? In 1999 doctors went on long strike over that pathetic state and FTJ ended up firing most of them. All Zambians were quiet. Now that it directly affects you or your relative then you want to complain.

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  5. EDGAR LUNGU IS BASKING IN LUXURY UNTOLD. HE JUST WASTED $300000 ON A TRIP FOR HIM AND HIS BUDDIES TO GO TO NYC AND HAVE A GOOD TIME. MEANWHILE THESE ARE THE CONDITIONS WE HAVE TO ENDURE WHEN WE TAKE A RELATIVE OR SICK CHILD TO THE HOSPITAL? HALF THAT MONEY WOULD HAVE PAID TO RENOVATE THESE RESTROOMS IF ONLY OUR LEADERS CARED ENOUGH. $300000 CAN BULD A WHOLE NEW SEPARATE ABLATION BLOCK WITH ITS OWN BOREHOLE AND PUMP. INTEAD LUNGU USED THAT TO GO HANGOUT NOT COUNTING THE ALLOWANCES THEY ALL GOT. LUNGU SLEEPS 4 KM FROM UTH HE NEEDS TO GO THERE AND SEE FOR HIMSELF HOW HIS SELFISHNESS IS KILLING PEOPLE. LUNGU IS SELFISH! $300000!!!!!!!!! IMAGINE! !!!!!!!!

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  6. Where is kambwili boasting about building roads and hospitals? Most if not all UTH needs to be bulldozed and rebuilt.

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  7. I understand that the UTH public relations manager has refuted this story and the pictures shown! He added that if anybody wished to know the truth about UTH, they should seek clearance from his office

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    • No one has refuted anything. You can go to the Wards and see for yourself. We do not need clearance from anyone to expose the failures of management of public institutions. If Zambian governments were serious, this problem would be fixed within a month or so.

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  8. Don’t complain. This is what we voted for. Ifitu in Lungu. There’s money to hire a plane to go to NY with over 256 delegates who are entitled to five thousand American pini per night but there’s no money for maintenance at UTH. KK had a vision but he was let down by Kafupi, RB, the Cobra and now Lungu. Welcome o Zambia the real Africa.

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  9. Dear LT,

    OK we get it. UTH is very bad. It is beyond bad. Now please enough of the dirty toilet pictures.

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  10. The black man has failed to govern himself. where are the degree, diplomas, certificate , honorary nonsences…….God help us.

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  11. This is where we miss it! Why don’t we blame our own lack of initiative to clean or maintain our own surroundings but wait for someone else from Europe to come and do it for us, and then we say “ah, they are clever, these bazungus!” We blame Government for everything as if we are all handicapped! But when it comes to stealing, we are very clever!

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  12. Mugwileni Uyo Chagwa!!
    He’s busy telling us he wants to be the “Best Zambian President ever”
    I am aware he’s NOT responsible for this Rot, which had set before he took office.
    This however is President Chagwa’s chance to redeem himself, fix this stinking death trap called “A Hospital” & prove hes not just another conman in Plot One.
    I remain sceptical he will turn things around, refurbish this eyesore /sorry excue for a hospital, & even lead by example by going to the U.T.H, whenever he needs treatment himself, instead of skipping away to a foreign hospital haemorrhaging scarce resources whenever he has a minor medical condition like a stubbed toe.

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