Persons with Disabilities to Protest - Sierraloaded News

Saturday, 30 September 2017

Persons with Disabilities to Protest


 The Sierra Leone Union on Disability Issues (SLUDI), national umbrella union of all Disabled People Organisations (DPOs), has given the government two weeks ultimatum to either approve subvention to the Disability Commission or they take to street in protest over delay in allocation of funds to the Commission.

The demand came after the government delay the allocation of subvention to the Commission to enable it undertakes activities. The Commission has not received subvention from government from the start of the year.

The president of SLUDI, Santigie Kargbo told a news conference in Freetown on Monday that “SLUDI being the national umbrella union of all Disabled People Organisations (DPOs) is of grave concern over the deplorable state of the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities (NCPD) which was set by the government of Sierra Leone to fulfill the implementation of the United Nations Convention on the Right of Persons with Disabilities Act 2011.”

“SLUDI is calling on the President Ernest Bai Koroma to intervene, as persons with disabilities are seriously suffering because of these issues. If within two weeks of negotiation the Hon. Minister of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs failed to address this concern, the union will be left with no alternative but to stage a peaceful national protest to strategic locations in the country in order to demonstrate our frustration,” the president said.

He said “SLUDI and its constituent members are not happy with the current deplorable state of the Commission for not having their subvention from the Ministry of Finance through the instruction of the Minister of Social Welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs Dr Sylvia Blyden.”

“This action has rendered the Commission as white elephant that is not functional since the beginning of 2017. The Union has held several consultations with the Disability Commission and has tried also on many occasions to meet with the Minister but that have proven futile,” he said.

He said this problem has made the operations of the Commission useless which has grossly affected the lives of thousands disabled in the country.

In an earlier occasion, the Chairman of the National Disability Commission Mr Franklyn Koroma expressed dismay over government delay in provide money to run the affairs of the Commission since the starting of 2017.

He made this disclosure during the launching of the six agenda priorities for the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the electoral and political processes.

“The Commission every year has been asked the government to provide fund for us to run out our programmes, but money given to us is too small to understand projects that the disability commission desire. Even this year we are yet to receive subvention to roll out our programmes,” he said.

He said the Commission cannot help disabled in the country because they don’t have money.
The former SLUDI president, Kabba Franklyn Bangura alleged that the Minister of Social Welfare has demanded an apology from the Disability Commissioner before she could approve disbursement of subvention to the Commission.

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