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Monday, October 18, 2021

Gambia gov’t conscious and committed to defend rights of disabled – Malick Jones

At the annual celebrations marking International Week of The Deaf on the theme  ‘Strengthening Human Diversity,’ at the Gambia Association of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing (Gadhoh) headquarters in Kanifing, Thursday, he said being a member committed to equalisation of opportunities and having ratified the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities without reservation, the government of The Gambia is conscious and committed to the duty to protect, promote and fulfill the rights of people with disabilities.

 “Through the Department of Social Welfare there has been a remarkable collaboration with Gadhoh and other disabled persons’ organisations and key stakeholders towards the realisation of their collective plight and aspirations. Here in The Gambia diversity is given due prominence. Remember those lines of nationalism as spelt out in our national anthem – ‘And join our diverse peoples to prove man’s brotherhood’. By joining all people irrespective of colour, creed or disability, we are in fact uniting mankind to the source of divine creation. The human race is nothing but one big family as created and ordained by Allah,” he said.

Jones, former deputy director general of the state-owned Gambia Radio and Television Services stressed that strengthening human diversity draws upon the basic principles of human rights and respect for all people and diversity.

“There is need for more sensitisation of The Gambian society so that it can better enhance its capacity to take into account diversity and make needed changes. National associations of the deaf can, for example, take concrete steps to raise awareness among government officials, ministers, authorities, responsible persons at workplaces, medical professionals and national education experts on the richness of deaf heritage, culture and sign languages,” he said.

President Abdou Kadir Drammeh said: “Gadhoh will continue to raise awareness among government officials, ministers, authorities, medical professionals and education authorities on the richness of deaf heritage, culture and sign languages”.

The purpose of International Week of the Deaf (WFD) is to draw the attention of politicians, authorities and the general public to the achievements of deaf people and the concerns of the deaf community. During this week, organisations of deaf people worldwide are encouraged to carry out information campaigns about their work, and to publicise their demands and requests. This week also increases solidarity among deaf people and their supporters, and is used as a time to stimulate greater efforts to promote the rights of deaf people throughout the world.


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