Binga elders left to starve

Source: Binga elders left to starve | Newsday (News)

BY PRAISEMORE SITHOLE

THE elderly and disabled people in Binga district are wallowing in poverty as they are missing out on financial support from government’s social welfare schemes and are excluded from non-governmental organisation (NGO)-initiated programmes.

In an interview with Southern Eye on Sunday, Zewuka 1 village head in Mabobolo area, Bright Munkombwe said most of the disabled and elderly persons were surviving on begging.

“As Binga district community, we have a lot of people registered under social welfare as needy, just a few are getting financial support from NGOs through social welfare and this is just a small section. Most of them are starving,” he said.

“Most of them are with disabilities and aged. They lack financial support from the government to do some livelihood projects; they spend most of the time begging around for survival.”

He said most of them were illiterate and unemployed because of disability.

“For old age people, there are a lot of them around the district who were just abandoned by children who went to look for greener pastures in the diaspora. The district should have at least a home for old people like the one at Binga Catholic Centre for abandoned children and orphans.

“Our appeal as youths, we are looking forward to having vocational training centres for people with disabilities so that they can be equipped to develop their area without much help from outside.

Chief Dobola of Mulindi echoed the same sentiments saying: “People are starving and when the donors come they are not consulting us leaders to provide names of those who are mostly affected by poverty. Leaders know people in their communities.”

“Sometimes the donor comes when children are at school and most of these elderly and disabled will not have anyone to go with them where the donor is and they are left out.”

Binga district development co-ordinator Farai Marinyame was not reachable for comment.

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