A health time bomb looms in Manicaland as some ambulances in the province are reportedly grounded due to the crippling fuel shortage in the country.

Ministry of Health sources in Mutare told NewsDay yesterday that some service stations in the city were refusing to give them first preference whenever fuel was available.

“Some ambulances across the province are grounded as they are failing to get fuel. We are made to wait in long winding queues whenever there is fuel,” said the source.

“We should be given first preference since we carry lives of many people in our hands and we hope that this should be addressed.”

Manicaland provincial medical director Patron Mafaune said her office received the report last week, but insisted the issue has now been addressed.

“We received the report last week, but the issue is that they were going with containers and they were not given fuel,” he said.

“The issue has been resolved and we said that drivers should go to service stations with their ambulances and they are now being assisted. The situation has improved.”

The country is faced with fuel shortages and government has since reversed the ban on people to buy fuel using containers.

Meanwhile, Mutare City council issued a statement over the weekend that they were dealing with a new cholera case.

“We have received one confirmed cholera case in Gimboki area. The male patient tested positive to cholera but is responding well to treatment at Mutare Infectious Disease Hospital,” said the municipality.

This brings to three the number of cases recorded in the city since the outbreak of cholera a few months ago.

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