Luweero District Council Passes Ordinance to Empower PWDs

Ronald Ndawula the Luweero LC 5 Chairman says that the ordinance will be forwarded to Solicitor General for advise before its implementation to ensure that it confirms and doesn’t contradict with National laws.
File Photo; MPS Representing PWDs greeting Vice President Edward Ssekandi at the International Day For Persons with Disabilities held at Kiwoko Church of Uganda Primary School in Nakaseke district.

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Luweero district council has passed an ordinance that seeks to empower and promote inclusion of People with Disabilities-PWDs in service delivery.

According to the Luweero District ordinance 2019, at least 10% of all district budget allocations will go to PWDs and projects must be responsive to their needs.

The entire district departments shall make specific vote on issues of persons with disabilities to address their sexual and reproductive health, education, employment, health and economic needs among others.

The district shall ensure that all health centres are easily accessible and adjustable labour bed must be provided to expectant Women with disabilities.

The Ordinance adds that the District Planner shall be required to present certificate of gender and equity compliance before any budget is adopted and passed by district council.

The ordinance condemns persons impregnating women with Disabilities and introduces punishment to those abandon them.

According to ordnance, any person who breaches any provision of the ordinance shall be liable to fine of 200,000 shillings or imprisonment for six months or both.

The ordinance was tabled by Abbey Ssozi the Luweero District Councillor for Wobulenzi town council and it was unanimously passed by the councillors.

Herbert Ssekabira the Male District Councillor for PWDs says that the ordinance will help in fight against discrimination and ensure equal distribution of resources to PWDs.

Deborah Nalubega the Female District Councillor for PWDS explains that PWDs have been side-lined in many government programmes and the intention of the ordinance is to compel department heads ensure that they are considered.

Nalubega says that although some of the provisions are captured in National policies they weren’t enforceable over lack of serious penalties.

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Ronald Ndawula the Luweero LCV Chairperson Luweero says that ordinance will be forwarded to Solicitor General for advice to ensure that it confirms and doesn’t contradict with National laws.

Allan Kabaale a lawyer and activist for the lawyer say that some of provisions in the ordinance have been domesticated from International Statutes and National Policies to ensure it confirms with the National laws.

Kabaale adds that the ordinance seeks to remind the residents and local leaders that even PWDs are equal to others.

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Other Persons with Disabilities led by Ivan Mbogo, the Chairperson of Kikyusa Sub County Persons living with Disabilities Association say the ordinance will help them overcome daily challenges and help them to demand for better services like other persons.

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Recently Members of Parliament and Persons with Disabilities appealed to central government to increase budgetary allocation for special grant to 10 billion shillings.

Since the Special grant for Persons with disabilities became operational in 2011, the government has been allocating three billion shillings annually. 

But the MPs and Persons living with disabilities say low budgetary allocation has retarded transformation of the group. The 2014 National Housing and Population Census, indicates that 5.6 million people (14.82 per cent) of Uganda's total population of 37.78 million people live with disabilities.