The constitution of Zimbabwe recognises the rights of persons with disabilities but is limited as it states that government is mandated to act if resources permit, which the already cash-strapped and ailing Zimbabwe government can use in order not to honour its obligation to provide appropriate services for the disabled. By SALLY NYAKANYANGA.
As you enter Baines and Mazowe streets in the Avenues - a residential and business area about 1.8km from Harare's Central Business District (CBD) - you are welcomed by old, worn-out and abandoned furniture and domestic appliances.
Further down, a green tent hangs perilously covering the property (beds, blankets, clothes, cupboards) of some of the former occupants and beneficiaries of the Leonard Cheshire Masterton Home.
Last April, 17 occupants of the Masterton Home (a Leonard Cheshire Disability Zimbabwe Trust property - an organisation that champions the rights of persons with disabilities in Zimbabwe) were evicted from the place which many of them had called home for more than 20 years. This was after a Supreme Court ruling in November last year ordered their ouster.
One of the disabled former resident, Robert Chiite, 46, who is physically challenged due to polio, came to the home in 1997.