By Scoop Reporter
CHIEF Government Spokesperson Dora Siliya has assured persons with disabilities that Government will continue to value their contributions and participation in national affairs.
Ms. Siliya, who is also Minister of Information, says persons with special needs are important and occupy a special place in Government’s development agenda.
Speaking when she met a delegation from the Zambia Deaf Society (ZDS) in her office today, Ms. Siliya said Government will continue to recognize equal rights for all human beings regardless of their physical abilities.
She says Government, through her office, has undertaken to ensure that all Government policies, programmes and projects are visible to all citizens including the deaf.
“As a people and as Government, we have to ensure that we mainstream issues if disabilities including the deaf in all social, economic and political activities to make your life easier,” Ms. Siliya said.
And Ms. Siliya has advised television stations across the country to seriously consider engaging interpreters for persons with hearing challenges as a way of ensuring that they are not left behind.
She says in the wake of the outbreak of the COVID-19, there is need for all media institutions to ensure they find means of reaching out to as many people as possible especially the physically challenged adding that the disease has not spared anyone.
She says her ministry will engage the Zambia Institute of Public Health (ZIPH) on how best information on COVID-19 can be packaged so that it caters for all sections of society, including the deaf.
She says Coronavirus is real and it is not sparing anyone hence the need for information about the disease to reach everyone.
“We might think that this information is available to all and yet there are still pockets of people with special needs who really need it to be specifically tailored for people like you,” she said.
She says through the Zambia National Broadcasting Corporation (ZNBC), Government has provided adverts on COVID-19 that are broadcast in sign language but that this may not be enough hence the need for all stakeholders to join hands.