Monday, November 3, 2014

Newly established council for people with disability to get a boost

THE Government has set aside Sh. 40 million from its 2014/15 fiscal year budget as initial payments to facilitate the activities of the newly established consultation council for people with disability in the country. It has been learnt. The Deputy Minister for Health and Social Welfare Dr. Steven Kebwe revealed last week on Saturday in Dar es Salaam at an historic event whereby his ministry inaugurated the long awaited consultation council of people living with disability in the country. The historic event which was graced by Health Minister Dr. Seif Rashid was attended by the Chairperson of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Social Services Ms. Margareth Sitta.  Also in attendance were members of the council and representatives of various groups of people with disability who are grouped in one federation known in its Kiswahili acronym as SHIVYAWATA. In his speech, Dr. Kebwe noted that, about 13 percent of the total population which covers about 5 million people in the country is composed of people with disability who need urgent help in terms of social, an aspect that his ministry will disburse such large sum of money to help facilitate the activities. He has also noted that, the ministry is going to work closely with the council members bearing the fact that the newly formed council would protect their respects which they deserve in the society. 

On his part, the Health Minister Dr. Rashid who hailed the formation of a new council urged its members not to hesitate to expose any problems facing them to the responsible organs, by doing so they shall have fulfilled basic reasons for which the council is formed. Dr. Rashid highlighted six major functions which the council would be concentrating on under the jurisdiction of his ministry, and among them is to advice the minister for Health on matters pertaining to the social services directed to the people with disabilities in the country. Others are to provide consultancy to institutions which prepares core services and programme activities for the people with disabilities and how to arrest to people who are fond of discriminating people with disabilities. Others are to advice the National Electoral Commission (NEC) to ensure smooth participation of the people with disabilities during national elections, to advice on how to keep records for people with disability and lastly to abide by the laws under which the disability Act of 2010 was formed. On his part, the Chairman of the Council Professor Edward Bagandashwa has promised to work hard for his people and the federation of people with disability in general. He said that, his council would increase the welfare of people with disability in the country. One step forward the Chairman noted that he would concentrate on is to increase training opportunities which he is optimistic that would increase their knowledge and understanding.

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