Ghana to lose UN support over PWDs

Ghana may receive little or no funding from the United Nations to undertake activities for people with disabilities.

This is because it has failed to implement the United Nations Convention on Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD).

Moses Fordjour, Monitoring and Evaluation Officer of the Ghana Federation of Disability, expressed the fears at a press conference in Accra, on Friday.

He said the government had demonstrated bad faith in implementing Article 33 of the UNCRPD which enjoined member states to implement domestic disability legislations and policies in line with international best practices.

He said although Ghana signed the convention in 2007 and ratified it in 2012, it had been dragging its feet in addressing the concrete issues contained in the UNCRPD.

Mr. Fordjour said in spite of the existence of state institutions such as the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection and the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice, which could provide the legal framework for the implementation of the UNCRPD, the right mechanism had not been put in place to ensure its successful implementation.

To address the challenges, the federation appealed to the government to consider the eight-point agenda in the implementation of the UNCRPD-design and publish a comprehensive disability monitoring and evaluation for PWDs, take immediate steps to harmonise existing domestic laws on PWDs Act, 2006 (Act 715) to conform to CRPD.

Other initiatives the federation wants the government to take a look at, include a strategic policy dialogue on carrying forward the provisions of the UNCRPD, introduce realistic measures to support the advocacy and sustainability of the organisation of PWDs in Ghana.

Mrs. Rita Kyeremaa Kusi, Executive Director, Ghana Federation of Disability Organisations, said that in 2015, her  outfit engaged the Gender Ministry and presented a position paper to it on the need to “breathe life into the UN convention,” but the ministry had not responded.

She said a new position paper had been presented to the government, reminding it of its duties and the urgency in appointing a focal agency to see to the coordination and implementation of the convention, and hoped that the government would heed to the call.

By Malik Sullemana & Lisanne Dornoff

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