President Cyril Ramaphosa, seen here addressing players at a footabll friendly between South Africa and a Palestinian team, has finally announced the long-anticipated date of general elections

President Cyril Ramaphosa said the government is working towards providing accessible transportation to all categories of people, including persons with disabilities.

Speaking at the Transport Summit on Universal Accessibility, the president noted that there are several municipalities are working on integrated public transport programs as a part of a reformed approach to urban planning.

"The goal of a universally accessible national transport system is not only within reach. It is also a vital part of our efforts to build a South Africa that truly belongs to all who live in it," Ramaphosa said, SA News reported.

The president highlighted that the government is using the Public Transport Network Grant to promote the implementation of universal design and universal access, adding that now there are 10 integrated public transport network municipalities receiving the grant, with specific conditions on universal accessibility.

"Work is underway to roll out a standard for the universal accessibility of all road-based vehicles," Ramaphosa said.

The president acknowledged that although there is legislation in place, there is still a lot to be done to ensure the national transport system becomes fully accessible. He stressed that there are already ongoing measures in place for people with disabilities.

He shared that the "Department of Transport has gazetted a national policy for parking discs that will enable drivers with disabilities to use a disc obtained in one part of the country everywhere in South Africa."

"The Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (PRASA) has developed a universal access policy with norms and standards. It has committed to speed up its work to ensure that trains are accessible and station platforms are level," Ramaphosa said.

He pointed out that the Gautrain has been integrated with level boarding on the trains since it was first inaugurated.

The president also spoke regarding the development of future infrastructure, noting that all transport systems should be designed keeping disabled people in mind rather than making changes later.

For instance, he said the Aviation company, Airports Company South Africa is working to improve accessibility for persons with disabilities across its facilities including designated parking spaces, assisted passenger lounges and designated private search facilities at security gates.

"There is already a growing awareness within the aviation industry that passenger issues have not been dealt with from a universal access perspective and that more needs to be done," the president said.