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2019 Budget responsive to the vulnerable

03 Dec 2018 at 11:14hrs | Views
Allow me to give credit where it is due, the Second Republic showed its commitment towards the attainment of the Agenda 2030 as reflected in the recently announced 2019 budget statement.

Mine is mainly on how the budget reflected the commitment of Zimbabwe in upholding the provisions of the 1989 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) to which it is a bonafide member having ratified the rights convention in 1999.

An eagle eye's view of the responsiveness of the budget to the plight of the vulnerable and disadvantaged constituency of our society was mainly reflected by two major announcements. The Minister of Finance scrapped duty on the equipment and materials used by those living with disabilities. In addition, duty and Value Added Tax on sanitary ware was removed.

The action by government showed its commitment to non-discrimination based on gender or disability in conformity with one of the tenets of the UNCRC. Indirectly that ensured the right to education as well as the right to sanitation which are both strong pillars to proper child survival and development.

From a child rights perspective, the two major pronouncements were greeted with open arms especially by human/child rights activists. By virtue of being disabled and also being a girl child, this constituency was now suffering the double brunt of vulnerability. Expensive sanitary ware was now like a galloping horse to most young girls and women who had resorted to unhygienic practices of using pieces of cloth or in some extreme cases, leaves.

Those living with disabilities were no-longer receiving the paraphernalia necessary for their mobility and even day to day access to special services. The donors who had been trying to support them had already started withdrawing their goodwill gestures because the costs had become unbearable to them too.

The budget pronouncement just came on the nick of time and will for long be the darling of most women and young girls as well as people living with disabilities.

This was just but a synopsis of some of the major highlights that touched my heart, but not trying to sweep under the carpet all other progressive measures put across by the minister that will steer Zimbabwe towards the agenda 2030.  
People spoke and the President listened hence a masterpiece of a budget!

Source - Brightface Mutema
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