Shiwang’andu: No longer backwater place

ROBINSON KUNDA, Shiwang’andu
WHEN Shiwang’andu was declared a district in 2013 following the creation of the new province of Muchinga, it was one of the least developed areas in the country.
According to the last census that was conducted some 10 years ago, the district then had a population density of 9.5 inhabitants per square kilometre and a population of about 59,795 people with an annual population growth rate of 1.3 percent.
But despite having this population, Shiwang’andu district had no basic services such as hospitals, secondary schools, electricity, running water and television signal.
The residents relied on water from natural water bodies; having piped water was a far-fetched dream.
According to district administrative officer Christopher Banda, as of 2013, Shiwang’andu had no secondary school which went up to Grade 12 and the pupils who passed to Grade 10 were mostly sent to Mpika or Chinsali, while most of those in primary schools had to endure walking long distances.
Mr Banda adds that due to lack of electricity, the whole district had no mortuary and those who lost their loved ones had to transport the bodies to Chinsali General Hospital or Chilonga Mission Hospital in Mpika, where they could find mortuaries.
“But this is very expensive for many people to afford,” Mr Banda says. “You know transporting a body is quite expensive, so most people just bury immediately after someone dies.”
The whole district had only a few basic health centres such as CLICK TO READ MORE

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