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Disabled ‘not safe’ under Mnangagwa as govt shuts down Jairos Jiri

President Emmerson Mnangagwa’s administration has de-registered the 73 year old Jairos Jiri Association which is Zimbabwe’s most famous philanthropic organisation set up in 1950.

Using Christian principles of charity, patience and non-judgmental tolerance, Jairos Jiri started creating facilities in the 1940’s for disadvantaged and disabled people in Rhodesia / Zimbabwe.

The famous association which existed to assist to rehabilitate disabled persons within Zimbabwe to learn and be trained skills so they are empowered to manage their lives and become responsible citizens of society has been shut down by the Zanu-PF regime for allegedly failing to comply with regulations.

This comes after the Registrar of Private Voluntary Organizations in conjunction with the Private Voluntary Organization (PVO) board, issued a statement this week saying that they had noted with concern that a number of registered PVOs are not complying with the prescribed expectations of their operations. They decided to de-register 291 non-governmental organisations.

“Accordingly, the Registrar of Private Voluntary Organizations and the Private Voluntary Organization Board have therefore deregistered 291 organizations that were found to be non-compliant with the provisions of Private Voluntary Organization,” said Director of Social Development, Tawanda Zimhunga, in the Ministry of Public Service, Labour and Social Welfare.

Jairos Jiri Association is among the closed organisations.

Over 6.500 people each year are being helped through outreach and follow-up integration programmes.

The types of disabilities people have are very wide and the help needs to be tailored to their requirements.

Commenting on the issue, political activist Makomborero Haruzivishe slammed Mnangagwa for being a dictator.

“Jairos Jiri Association was created in 1950 to rehabilitate disabled persons and be empowered with life skills.

It survived the repressive colonial Rhodesia and (Robert) Mugabe only for the tyrant ED to de-register it after 73 years with his PVO Bill. Even the disabled are not safe under ED,” he said.

As one of the largest organisation of its kind in Africa, Jairos Jiri Association has been there to provide and help disabled men, women, boys and girls needing assistance.

Jairos Jiri founded the Association in 1950 to provide hope and assistance for the disabled of Zimbabwe and to be an advocate to the Public and Government for rights and needs of the disadvantaged.

The Association operated sixteen centres where approximately 1600 children and adults get treatment, care and education. Among the activities are:

Special Primary schools for the deaf, blind and physically challenged, hostels and homes to provide a safe environment for people with disabilities and those who have no family support, a vocational training centre to provide knowledge and practical skills, an agricultural skills training centre and clinics to provide medical care and treatment for people with disabilities

The facility also provides an orthopaedic workshop to provide aids for the disabled, a community based rehabilitation programme, a gender empowerment programme and craft shops.