MDC policy on persons with disabilities
It is extremely sad and regrettable that while persons with disabilities constitute about fifteen percent of Zimbabwe’s population, for the past thirty-seven years, they have continued to be treated as objects of charity and welfare cases rather than equal citizens with equal rights just like any other citizen.
The MDC led by President Morgan Tsvangirai boldly affirms that the perpetuation of such a state of affairs is a travesty of justice and a mockery to democracy. We deplore the unco-ordinated manner in which the Zanu PF regime deals with disability and we find it extremely unacceptable that persons with disabilities continue to be missing in most of our decision making bodies in the country and are shut out of meaningful business ventures and policies continue to be crafted without due regard to them, their interests and needs. In fact, the country does not have any national disability policy.
The MDC is convinced that there is need to correct this democratic deficit and anomaly by ensuring that persons with disabilities are represented at all levels of government structures. We believe that at the executive level, there must be a ministry dealing with issues of disability. This ministry will not be there to isolate disability and compartmentalise it but rather to work with other ministries and ensure that disability is mainstreamed in all governmental programs.
The MDC understands that our decision making processes will not only be inadequate but poorer without the input of persons with disabilities and such input can only be from them. We would like to build a people’s government which ensures equality for persons with disabilities in all spheres while providing social protection measures to our citizens with disabilities who have been forced into poverty through years of mismanagement and bad governance by the Zanu PF regime.
The MDC believes in an inclusive democracy based on the understanding that persons with disabilities are part and parcel of the broader community and have a lot to contribute to our democracy.
MDC: Equal Opportunities for All
Obert Chaurura Gutu
MDC National Spokesperson