ZAPD appeals for disability friendly infrastructure in L/stone
Livingstone, Apr 5/13 ZANIS————The Zambia Agency for Persons with Disabilities (ZAPD) has appealed to the Livingstone City Council to ensure construction of all new infrastructure in the tourist capital takes into account accessibility by persons with disabilities.
ZAPD Coordinator for Livingstone, Janet Chisupa, noted that Livingstone was undergoing a major facelift in terms of infrastructural development ahead of the hosting of the United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) General Assembly in August this year but was concerned that accessibility to the infrastructure by persons with disabilities had not been considered.
Ms Chisupa said despite being for the benefit of the people, some roads under construction lacked access points for persons with disabilities, especially the wheel chair users, and this made it dangerous for them to venture onto public roads.
Speaking in an interview with ZANIS in Livingstone today, Ms Chisupa said measures had to be put in place to ensure newly constructed roads had access points and lower pavements to facilitate safe passage for persons with disabilities.
Ms Chisupa further said construction of the Town Centre market, Inter-city Bus Terminus and public toilets in strategic places were some of the infrastructure that needed input from ZAPD as it was more conversant with requirements which had to be adhered to for persons with disabilities to have easy access to the buildings.
She appealed to the local authority to ensure it involved the agency in its monitoring and planning activities as efforts were being made to turn the tourist capital into a conducive environment for all.
Ms Chisupa said time had come to reduce dependence on Non Governmental Organizations (NGOs) that deal with disabilities as ZAPD was a government entity with a mandate to address challenges faced by people with disabilities.