The Obuasi branch of the Ghana Federation of Disability Organisations (GFD) has called on Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) to factor in the needs of members in the planning and implementations of policies.
It said incorporating the needs of vulnerable groups in the planning and budget allocations was the way to go to ensure inclusive development.
The President of the Obuasi Chapter of GFD, Karim Iddrisu, said this at Obuasi during a programme to mark the 2022 World Disability Day.
He charged the MMDAs to demonstrate commitment towards empowering Persons with Disability (PWDs) by prioritising their needs at the conception of their development programmes.
The World Disability Day is celebrated annually on December 3, instituted by the United Nations in 1992, to promote understanding of disability issues and mobilise support for the dignity, rights and well-being of PWDs.
It also seeks to increase awareness of gains to be derived from the integration of PWDs in every aspect of social, political, economic and cultural lives.
The Obuasi Chapter of the Federation decided to climax the month-long celebration in January, this year, on the theme: “Transformative Solutions for Inclusive Development: The Role of Innovation in Fuelling an Accessible and Equitable World.”
Mr Iddrisu said though some assemblies had been supporting PWDs, with the Obuasi Assembly not an exception, more needed to be done in terms of equal opportunities for employment and skills development.
He bemoaned the lack of support for PWDs during the peak of the COVD-19 outbreak, saying that the period saw many of them wallow in poverty.
“It was very unfortunate that government did not come out with any policy targeted at supporting PWDs during the peak of the COVID-19. A lot of our people really suffered and are currently suffering from post- COVID-19 losses,” he noted.
The Obuasi Municipal Chief Executive, Elijah Adansi-Bonah, called for a national dialogue on some of the issues raised by the participants, especially on the need to make special provision for PWDs in job creation.
He said the District Assemblies Common Fund had been the major source of support for PWDs but its disbursement had specific directives.
He implored the GFD to submit its needs to the Assembly to be captured in the planning and budgetary processes.
The Municipal Director, Department of Social Welfare, Peter Owusu Ansah, said 543 PWDs had been registered to benefit from government interventions and urged all members to register.