Scores of civil servants and School Development Committee (SDC) executives suffered suspected food poisoning while attending a workshop at Westwood Lodge in Chiredzi last week.
According to The Mirror, the majority of the roughly 250 delegates experienced running stomachs due to suspected food poisoning.
The delegates, comprising school heads, Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education officials and SDCs’ executive members, were drawn five each from 37 schools in Masvingo.
They were booked at the lodge from Thursday to Friday for a Schools Development Committee (SDC) induction workshop.
When contacted for comment by The Mirror, lodge owner and managing director Obert Ngwenya, who is also a ZANU PF councillor for Ward 2 in Chiredzi denied the reports. He said:
Look this is the group of people which was here yesterday, nobody seems ill and everybody is here and these people are about to have their lunch, somebody is just trying to tarnish my image.
The Mirror reported a source as saying that one Dr Daniel Makuyana had to be called the next morning to attend to the crisis. The source was quoted as saying:
Most of the delegates had running stomachs throughout the night. Guests literally spent the night in the toilets, some were sweating and a large number could not attend the workshop the next morning as they were seriously ill. It was terrible.
The head cook and the manager of the lodge, Caroline Sanjama reportedly went to the workshop which was taking place in the garden and apologised to the delegates.
She reportedly promised to investigate the cause of the problem and report back to the guests.
The Mirror reported that Dr Makuyana confirmed attending to sick guests but declined to give details when he realised that he was speaking to the publication. He said:
Yes, I attended to sick people at the lodge and by the way who are you? I am not allowed to speak to the Press.