CDD-Ghana on Disability Act
The Ghana Center for Democratic Development (CDD), says it will by the end of this year, launch a comprehensive anti-stigmatization campaign to educate Ministries, Departments and Agencies, other quasi state institutions and private service providers on the Disability Act 715. Under the act, it is a criminal offence punishable by a fine or jail term to make derogatory remarks about people with disability (PWD) if the ten-year implementation moratorium is lifted. According to Prof. Gyimah-Boadi, executive director of CDD, as a democracy and good governance focused institution, it maintains a deep and abiding interest in promoting respect for human rights, including the right of the vulnerable and the disadvantaged in the society. Prof. Gyimah-Boadi said this at a day’s public education seminar on the disability act 715 on the topic, “Promoting and Protecting the Rights of People with Disabilities in Ghana.” The seminar, which was sponsored by the United States of America International Development (USAID), sort to educate the public (especially private sector service providers) on the Disability Act even though a moratorium has been placed on the implementation to enable public institutions adjust to the changes contained in the Act. Prof. Gyimah-Boadi said it is for this reason that the Center joined other state and civil society organizations to engage in research and advocacy in favour of the passage of credible disability legislation. He commended the government and Parliament for the rapid passage of the Act last year June. “The provisions of this landmark legislation have a great potential to enable PWDs to fully enjoy their rights enshrined in Article 29 of the 1992 constitution of Ghana,” he said.
He mentioned that the Act guarantees PWDs physical access to public places, specialist medical care centers, educational institutions, employment centers and public transportations. He expressed his gratitude to the ministry of Manpower, Youth and Employment, the Parliamentary Select Committee on Employment, Social Welfare and State Enterprises, Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) and other state institutions for their support in passing the Act. In a remark, the deputy Minister for Manpower, Youth and Employment said just passing the Act will be meaningless if steps are not taken to implement it. He said government has added ¢4.1 billion for the enhancement of the economic capacity of persons with disability. He called on the various disabled associations to nominate their representatives to serve on the National Council on People with Disabilities (NCPWDs) to enable the Ministry forward the list of nominees to the President.
In a quick remark, Mr. Yaw Ofori-Debrah, President of Ghana Federation of the Disabled (GFD) appealed to the Ministry and all stakeholders to ensure the law does not remain fallow. He threatened to drag the various District and Municipal Assemblies to the CHRAJ for failing to implement portions of the Common Fund set aside for people with disabilities. Source:
The Daily Dispatch