Rural district authorities have been challenged to increase investment in solar energy in order to promote community development.

Minister of State for Provincial Affairs in Mashonaland Central, Monicah Mavhunga made the call at the official opening of Nyatsato Rural Health Centre and a piped water scheme.

The four-bed clinic, staff accommodation and waiting mothers shelter was built at a cost of $197 000 contributed by the Constituency development fund, government and World Vision.

German-based Non-governmental organisation, WHH financed the 55 000 solar powered piped water scheme which will service 2000 families in a radius of 5.9 kilometers.

Rushinga villagers expressed joy about the newly opened clinic highlighting the days of walking long distances will be a thing of the past.

“We used to walk 10 to 15 kilometers to get to the nearest clinic so this day is really special for us, said  Sastensia Makoto

“I am so happy about the opening of the clinic. it was especially difficult for pregnant women. Some would deliver on the way to the clinic and experience complications,”  added Miriam Muyengwa

“I thank government and partners for building this clinic. It will positively impact this community,”  said another villager, Chiratidzo John.

Nyatsato Rural Health Centre is yet to be connected to the national power grid and the Minister of State for Mashonaland Central Provincial affairs, Cde Monicah Mavhunga challenged Rushinga District Council to exploit renewable energy.

“On power, we have abundant solar energy and this is something you should take advantage of. I’m challenging you Rushinga council to partner investors who can set up power plants. In some countries, people are even being paid for supply power,” said the Minister.

Three more clinics are set to be built at Chomutukutu, Katoni and Gwangwava as Rushinga Rural District Council prioritises health with 70 percent of the 2019 annual budget being channeled in that area.