GOVERNMENT has announced plans to address the needs of senior citizens and protect them against loss of assets and savings.
Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare deputy minister Mercy Dinha, said this on Wednesday during the belated World Older Person Day commemorations.
The day is celebrated annually on October 1.
The celebrations were held at Melfort Old People’s Home in Ruwa under the theme: “Fulfilling the Promises of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights for Older Persons: Across Generations”.
“Some (older persons) have had their homes sold, leaving them destitute,” Dinha said.
“Some had their hard-earned investments spent by their relatives and children, leaving them vulnerable to extreme poverty.
“We have also read of assaults and insults of older persons on frivolous grounds, including being labelled witches.”
Dinha said there was need to craft safety nets for senior citizens.
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“Older persons deserve protection. They deserve love and care. Society should be observant wherever older persons risk being abused and report such activities,” Dinha said.
“Through the Older Persons Board, the government is able to mobilise and administer resources for the welfare, upkeep and protection of the elderly.
“In the same spirit, the government of Zimbabwe through my ministry would like to register its full commitment towards providing older persons with universal access to housing, health facilities, transport and food.”
Globally, the number of older people is expected to reach 1,4 billion by 2030.