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Water crisis piles woes on PWDs

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BY VANESSA GONYE

PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa’s special adviser on disability issues, Joshua Malinga, has decried the plight of people with disabilities (PWDs) in the wake of a water crisis that has affected most parts of the country amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Addressing delegates in Harare during a workshop organised by the Labour and Social Welfare ministry, Malinga said government should declare disability as a crisis because PWDs suffered numerous challenges on a daily basis.

“Disability is a crisis and we need the government to declare it so. They must also design special boreholes for disabled people, we need universal designs for PWDs,” he said.
“Some other countries have done it and PWDs can assist in designing those boreholes.”

Malinga said the country was not performing badly on disability issues, although there was need for improvement as there were areas that needed attention.

“With a new policy coming into effect, we are going to overtake many countries in Africa and I give credit to Mnangagwa, who has always been a friend of the PWDs. Whenever he makes a statement, he never forgets us, even during this whole issue about the pandemic, he has always been with us,” he said.

National director for disability affairs in the Labour and Social Welfare ministry, Christine Peta, said efforts were being made to identify issues affecting PWDs and how they could be dealt
with.

“We are facilitating the voice of PWDs so that we gain a full understanding of the challenges which they are experiencing so that we respond accordingly. We uphold the principle of involving PWDs in planning and implementation of programmes hence we work closely with them,” she said.

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