Persons with disabilities (PWDs) from Migori County now want the National and County Government of Migori to empower them, citing frustration they go through from living a dependent life.
The PWDs particularly from Kuria West Sub County said during an internal election of persons with disabilities from the area that their main call was for the government to offer them enough financial support to take care of themselves and not feel neglected.
While speaking to Kenya News Agency at Mabera social hall at Suba-Kuria market, the newly elected Chairman of Kuria West PWDs Welfare Association Mr Nkonya Newton Joseph appealed to the national government to ensure they are well represented at the state level.
“We as people living with disabilities feel neglected. We have never benefited enough from cash transfers directed towards helping PWDs across the country because we are not well represented,” lamented Nkonya.
He said they have various groups at the county level but very minimal allocation of funds for groups and welfares within the county have reached them.
Nkonya called for unity among PWDs and urged parents with children living with disabilities to refrain from the habits of hiding them in their houses; a trend he claimed was common within the Kuria community.
“There is a need to sensitize parents with disabled children that they can get help from various PWDs groups. Most of these parents feel shy and embarrassed to expose their children, something that is detrimental to their education and their wellbeing,” Nkonya noted.
Mr John Marwa, a representative of PWDs from Bukerege ward expressed concern over the hash treatments and brutality they are going through in the hands of some people without anyone to help them. He said that it is only through their union that they are guaranteed safety.
Mary Nyagonchera, a representative from the department of social services commended the PWDs for conducting a fair election to see them well organised. “The elections were good and we believe those elected will champion the needs of their members,” she said.
On complaints raised by the PWDs on County Government, she asked the national government through the Ministry of Public Service, and Gender to investigate the alleged embezzlement of funds meant for the PWDs at the county level.
She urged the PWDs to register with various groups in their disability office at the county headquarters to fill forms to enable them to receive various specialized equipment such as shoes and wheelchairs for them.
At the same time, Nyagonchera urged those PWDs in business to also visit their offices to get Equipments like welding machines, sewing machines among others which they can use to improve their lives.
By Polycarp Ochieng