There is mist over the completion of Biwi Clinic in Lilongwe, which was scheduled to open in January this year, as the Lilongwe City Council (LCC) is yet to identify another contractor to finish the work.
This followed the council’s termination of contract with the initial contractor for what the council’s spokesperson Tamara Chafunya described as substandard work.
LCC is constructing the hospital with a $194 000 (K111,495,000) grant from the Japanese Government. obtained in December 2012 under the Grant Assistance for Grassroots Human Security Projects.
But a site visit by The Nation on Tuesday revealed that the hospital, which was almost complete at the time of the abandonment, is on the brink of collapse as its walls, among other defects, have developed cracks.
Situated near Biwi Market, the hospital complex is also sheltering some vendors running makeshift restaurants as they store their wares in some of the rooms.
In an e-mail response, Chafunya played down fears of further delays in opening the health facility, saying the council is in the process of identifying a new contractor to finish the construction.
She said: “The process of identifying a new contractor is underway and hopefully by the end of November, the council will have identified and verified the defect s and forge towards the continuation of the under-constructed Biwi hospital.”
It is envisaged that this clinic will deliver basic health services to more than 135 000 people living in Lilongwe Urban and also ease congestion at Kamuzu Central and Bwaila Hospitals. n