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13.01.2010 General News

Disabled at war with Ho Assembly

By The Ghanaian Times
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The Ho branch of the Ghana Federation of the Disabled (GFD) has accused the Ho Municipal Assembly of breaching the rights of the disabled by depriving them of their share of the District Assemblies Common Fund.

It alleged that members of the federation have been deprived of accessing the two per cent District Assemblies Common Fund since 2005, which was increased to five per cent in 2009 as well as lack-of provision for free health insurance for persons with disability and deprivation from the share of the Member of Parliament's Common Fund.

At a media encounter held here yesterday to raise concerns, Simon Nyadzro, Chairman of the advocacy committee of the federation, urged the Member of Parliament for Ho Central, Captain (rtd), George Nfojoh, for his prompt intervention to avoid retarding the development and progress of the disabled in the community.

Disability issues are human rights issues and we want to cite the Ho Municipal Assembly for breaching the rights of the disabled since we are all equal citizens of Ghana," he stressed.

Mr. Nyadzro explained that since 2005, during the inception of allocation of the two per cent of the fund to support activities and programmes of persons with• disabilities, it received less than GH¢3,000 from the Assembly and when it was increased to five per cent nothing had been received.

Responding to a question, he said since May 2009, attempts made by the federation to lobby the Assembly to release the funds failed and questioned what the funds had been used for the past four years.

Mr. Nyadzro reminded the Assembly that the fund is a statutory allocation for persons with disability and cannot be misapplied.

Asked whether further allocations had been made in respect of the two per cent and the present five per cent of the fund, he said an amount of GH¢ 1,OOO was given to the federation in December last year and attempts to have it increased proved futile in respect of the two per cent allocation but nothing had been received since its increase to five per cent.

Mr. Nyadzro touched on the indigent clause in the National Health Insurance Policy which he claimed was being interpreted differently as if it had no provision for free health insurance for Persons with Disability who could not afford the premium other than those people with severe mental problem.

Mr. Nyadzro also appealed to government to create a special desk in hospitals and health centres for Persons with Disabilities.

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