by Kevin
The Chairperson EOC Sylvia Ntambi Muwebwa (Mrs) giving her remarks at the meeting.

Equal Opportunities Commission and NUDIPU held a reflection meeting with stakeholders from MDA’s on the theme ‘How Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’S) have addressed issues of Persons with Disabilities (PWD’S) at Mackinnon Suites, Kampala on Tuesday 11th July 2017.

In attendance were stakeholders from different sectors. Some representatives included those from Ministries of Agriculture, Works, transport, education and Gender who all made presentations on the progress of inclusion of PWD’s in achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

The representative of the Executive Director of NUDIPU Ms Kyozira Esther said NUDIPU had been pursuing the agenda of implementing SDGs in all budgets and plans in MDAs. She believed the workshop would yield more results for this cause. National Planning Authority has also been engaged in formulating and developing a tool for alignment of indicators to this plan.

NUDIPU has also engaged with EOC in regard to gender mainstreaming since they are responsible for the gender and equity certificate. She pledged to continuously partner with EOC to strengthen this cause and help dialogue on achieving these programmes in line with the SDGs.

The Chairperson EOC, Mrs. Sylvia Ntambi Muwebwa said it is necessary for everyone to address inclusion in fulfillment of achievement of the SDGs. Our mandate is very crucial and we have to act with all of you. The forum adopted the Ministerial Declaration which is line with NDG- Inclusive growth to attain MIS 2020. As EOC, we shall try to ensure that imbalances are reduced and request for your support towards this noble cause.

In addition, we develop the state of Equal Opportunities in Uganda annually; and we did research and published the salary disparity report.

The representative from Ministry of Works and Transport summarized for the participants the input that has been made in ensuring building designs and standards are adhered to like ensuring building entrances provide for ramps or escalators. Toilets should also have provision for PWD’s and they are working with the transport department to have public buses cater for PWD’s.

The Representative from Ministry of Education updated participants on their initiatives in reaching towards SDGs Goal 4- To ensure Inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all.

EOC Member Ms. Zaminah Malole expressed her gratitude to the stakeholders present for their reasonable accommodation. She stressed the need for the equipment sent to schools to be specifically used for children with special needs. She urged the Education ministry to consider creating a retainer policy for teachers who teach children with special needs

Speaking on behalf of the Minister of State for youth affairs, Mr. John Ebitu Director Social Protection, listed the different interventions the Ministry has introduced to include PWD’s which include coordination and supporting the rights of learners with special needs; introduction of target indicators for primary and secondary schools; inclusive of those with disabilities; training of teachers on sign language, training of users in BET, UNEB is developing a programme on special needs, training of ICT in schools, outreach to rural schools but cited a challenge on data collection methods.

In his closing remarks he stressed the need for every stakeholder to show passion and commitment for PWDs. Government has made a number of strides by establishing policies to address this. The National policy on Disability 2006 is in place and the review of the 2003 act is in offing. We shall use the mainstream approach and come up with specialized programmes to amplify this cause.

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