Human Rights

PWDs urged to unite for better service provision


GWERU-People with disability (PWDs) in the Midlands Province have been urged to unite in order to tackle issues that affect them more effectively.

The call was made by Gweru Residents and Ratepayers Association executive director, Cornilia Selipiwe, during an engagement meeting with PWDs on Wednesday.

The dialogue meeting was meant to address service delivery issues that specifically target the disability community in Gweru.

Selipiwe highlighted that PWDs are facing an array of challenges due to a lack of information and unity among them.

He emphasized the need for a strong and serious movement for people with disabilities in the Midlands Province.

“You need to come out of your silos, unite and form a formidable movement that will spearhead conversations around issues affecting your community. You require strong representation at local councils to advocate for your interests because you are an important constituency in the development of the city and the country at large,” he said.

“This doesn’t need an amendment to the Constitution, as the constitution already provides for a youth and women’s quota system, which includes individuals with disabilities. They should be given first priority because they fit into those constituencies,” added Selipiwe.

He pointed out that the issues faced by PWDs are neglected because there is no serious affirmative action to tackle their rights.

Furthermore, Selipiwe emphasized the need for a deliberate policy shift to include PWDs in positions of influence across all sectors of the economy.

Joice Togarepi from Mkoba 13, who has a disability, decried the poor service provision from the City of Gweru.

She stressed that the inadequate services exacerbate their challenges and push their lives to the edge.

“As people with disabilities, we bear the brunt of the poor service delivery from the city council. We are unable to access the services that we are paying for. There is no water, and this has increased the burden and costs as we have to hire someone to fetch water on our behalf.

“This has made the lives of the disability community very difficult as we continue to face numerous hurdles in accessing services,” she said.

She called on the local the authority to up their game in service delivery with a bias towards the PWDs.

Nigel Tahwa echoed the same sentiments, adding that the lack of information accessible to PWDs hampers their ability to access services.

He highlighted that the information provided by most service providers is not accessible to people with visual impairments.

Tahwa urged the local authority “to construct roads, pavements, and buildings that are disability-friendly”.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button