Media challenged to highlight plight of people with disability

Media challenged to highlight plight of people with disability
Members of the Union of Visually Impaired Persons of Central Equatoria State [photo: courtesy]

The media has been tasked with amplifying the voices of people living with disabilities so that their rights are respected by the government and the general public.

 The Director-General of the Media Authority, Spana Abuyi, stated that there is a need for the media to publicise the activities of people living with disability as well as tell positive stories about them to reduce the stigma against them.

“It’s important for you not to discriminate against people living with a disability. It is for the media to raise their concerns. Respecting them should start with you, “Abuyi said during the opening of the three-day training for journalists on disability reporting skills organised by UJOSS and CEPO yesterday.

“The media works in the best interests of people, including people with disabilities,” he added.

He said the media is the fourth estate of the nation and they are very important to the government and the population. For Abuyi, without the media, the nation will be in darkness because people will not be able to know what is happening outside and within the nation.

“If media is not there, there will be no information. .You need to engage people living with disability so that they are recognised,’’ he said.

Last month, the Union of Visually Impaired Persons of Central Equatoria State filed a case against some individuals in the State Ministry of Gender, Children, and Social Welfare, after four of their members were assaulted and seriously injured.

Several of the victims claimed they were beaten by state national security using the grips of the guns. The alleged security personnel are said to have been directed by the Director-General at the State Ministry of Gender, Child and Social Welfare to evict them from the Buluk office.

However, Elijah Malec Apollo, who is a victim, told The City Review that the incident came as a result of an interest in owning the union by some of the officials at the state ministry of gender.

Lawmakers at the Juba City Council Legislative Assembly are set to register all persons with disabilities within the city to ease service delivery to them.

The decision came after the members of the Disability Forum Club raised concerns about the lack of data on people with disabilities in Juba City.