A workshop was recently organized aimed at sensitizing all participants to be familiar with national and international laws pertaining to rights of persons with disabilities, be able to carry out activities in accordance with the procedures of national laws and to have a positive approach towards the law.
The Global Forum for the Defence of the Less Privileged (GFDLP) in collaboration with the National Commission on Human Rights and Freedoms (NCHRF) were the organizers of that workshop which saw the participation of 30 civil society organizations across the South West Region involved in the promotion of the rights of persons with disabilities. Also in attendance were passionate Cameroonians concerned about the plight of persons with disabilities.
This workshop was equally aimed at creating awareness on the importance of possessing a national disability card, procedure in obtaining the card, creating awareness on financial support they have from the government and the necessary steps to take in acquiring financial assistance.
Mr Njome Ekeke, the Rapporteur of NCHRF mentioned that the rights of persons with disabilities are recognized and protected by international bodies such as the International Labour Organization.
“It is necessary to obtain a National Disability Card which is very important for persons with disabilities to possess so as to enjoy national rights and exonerates them from taxes and other financial affairs.’’ Mr Njome added.
“The Cameroon legal system has failed to protect persons with disabilities because they are most often neglected in hospitals” Mr. Mathias, a disgruntled participant argues.
The Director of Human is Right, Mr. Blaise points out that there is ignorance on the part of persons with disabilities and proposed that measures be put in place by the government to aid in eradicating ignorance. Most people are ignorant of their rights, some do not even know the benefits they have from the government.
Many people suffer discrimination and this has affected them psychologically leading to failure to speak up when their rights are been violated, this therefore makes it cumbersome for the commission to carry out its duties in making sure that the rights of persons with disabilities is respected.
The issue of transportation with regard to persons with disabilities was also raised. Some of them complained of the expensive nature of transport faire levied on them by drivers. Some of them need personal assistance to move from one place to the other as their disabilities make it difficult for them to move to different places and lack of ramps to ease movement on stair cases.
At the end of the workshop, the Regional Secretary Mr. Tambe Tiku Christopher expressed his sincere gratitude to every participant and promised that more of such events will be held because of their educative dimensions. Attestations were handed to every participant.