The Chairman of the Ghana Federation of the Disabled [GFD] in charge of the Bongo District, Upper East Region, Mr. Akalga Samuel Asampana, has called on the government, civil society organisations and other stakeholders to provide them with training, adequate technical aids and support services to enable them confront the challenges facing them..
Mr Asampana who made the call at the district?s celebration of the 2014 International Day of the Disabled with the theme; ?making Ghana accessible for persons with disabilities, a concern of all?, said the event should have taken place on December 3 but for lack of funds.
He said though the United Nations Universal Declarations on Human Rights and Ghana?s 1992 Constitution recognized equal and inalienable rights of all Ghanaian citizens, PWDs did not enjoy their full rights.
The annual celebration of the event was to draw the attention as well as persuade the public, government and institutions to appreciate the needs and difficulties of PWDs in order to initiate and implement strategic policies that would create a conducive atmosphere for the inclusion of PWDs in decision making.
According to the GFD Chairman, their entitlement to fundamental rights had been relegated to the background as they were being discriminated against and denied some necessities of life.
Mr Asampana cited for instance, section 7 of Article 29 of Ghana?s Constitution which states that special incentives shall be given to PWDs in businesses and employment which he noted had been grossly overlooked.
?Sadly, in this 21st century there still exists considerable numbers of constraints which inhibit the employment of PWDs in both government and private establishments. Majority of us have special skills that could be tapped for development yet we are ignored?
He mentioned inadequate special education infrastructure, the absence of disability-friendly facilities and lack of medical care for early detection of disability coupled with the drastic reduction in the two per cent allocation of funds in the District Assemblies Common Fund as some of the problems that have increased the woes of PWDs in Ghana.
?From January 2014 to date, no money has been paid into the disability account and we wondered how the GFD could execute any planned projects and activities as well as extend support to any person with disability?, he said.
He commended the Bongo District Assembly, ADDRO and the Samuel Wellington Botwey [SWEB] Foundation for their financial and other support that helped to organize the event.
The Bongo District Coordinating Director, Mr Akaditi Ayambire, said the Assembly had worked closely with the District Fund Management Committee and streamlined the processes for proper and quick disbursement of the disability fund for activities and other responsibilities of the disabled.
The DCE also hinted that the Assembly would soon open a clients? centre to solely attend to persons with disabilities who visit the Assembly for any transactions so as to provide them the needed comfort and attention.