The Catholic Diocese of Mongu has handed over a maternity annex at Nalwei Rural Health Centre in Mongu district to government constructed at a cost of US$60,000.

Western Province Public Health Specialist Dr. Jacob Sakala received the maternity annex on behalf of government.

Speaking at the handover ceremony in Nalwei, Dr. Sakala thanked the Catholic Church for supplementing government efforts in reducing maternal mortality by bringing health services closer to the community.

Dr. Sakala said the facility that will serve a population of about 8, 000 people which is in line with government’s policy of ensuring that no one dies during and after giving birth.

He has since called on the people of Nalwei who are the main beneficiaries of the maternity annex to guard it jealously for its sustainability.

And handing over the facility after blessing it, Mongu Diocese Bishop Evans Chinyemba-Oblate of Mary Immaculate (OMI) said the idea of constructing the maternity annex was arrived at after the then Parish Priest Father Pat Cashin saw the need of having the facility in Nalwei.

Bishop Chinyemba said the Church is in support of government’s initiative to have a conducive environment where women can deliver from, hence donors and well-wishers thought of putting resources together for the annex to be constructed.

The Bishop has since thanked government for always being available to give guidance whenever it is needed, saying projects become successful when people work together.

And a female local resident, Masozi Ndandula thanked Government and the Catholic Church for coming to the aid of the women of Nalwei who used to travel long distances to access maternity services, adding that other mothers used to give birth at homes and under trees.

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