By Mike Sebalu
Members of Parliament representing people with disabilities called for a review of the guidelines of the national special grant for people with disabilities to include people with disabilities’ leaders at local government
The current guidelines exclude leaders of people with disabilities from most disability programs leaving the whole mandate to community development officers majority of whom are being transferred from time to time.
According to Ms. Acan Joyce, a Member of Parliament representing people with disabilities (PWD), councilors of people with disabilities are left out as Community Development Officers (CDOs) mishandle their programs since majority don’t know them from the ground.
She was speaking at the Uganda National Disability Symposium, at Okole Primary School, Kole district on Friday ahead of today’s international day for people with disabilities, with national celebrations being held in the mentioned district.
However, the commissioner in charge of people with disabilities and the elderly, Prosper Muhumuza said the guidelines were based on regional and district consultations and that it was agreed democratically that the chairpersons of councils of persons with disabilities would be in charge of approving the files.
Meanwhile, the Minister of State for Disability Affairs, Asamo Hellen Grace has challenged PWDs over miss appropriating government funds extended to them through the various programs including Emyooga.
The Minister says much as her ministry has successfully guided government to institute affirmative action for PWDS, with examples of special allocation under category 18 under Emyooga, some beneficiaries have instead decided to misuse the money meant to revolve.
She said every constituency has received Shs30 million for PWDs across the country but some decided to misuse the money instead of multiplying it. She cited examples of PWD groups in Kole district where different groups shared the Shs30 million but up to date less than Shs500,000 has been recovered.
However, Kole District Resident Commissioner, Caroline Angolere attributes the poor performance to the Covid-19 lockdown.
Today’s international day for people with disabilities is celebrated under the theme, ‘Leadership and Mindset Change. A tool for Inclusive Development,”