Kampala, Uganda | THE INDEPENDENT | The Member of Parliament representing People with Disabilities, Alex Ndezi has appealed to the government to reopen schools immediately.
Speaking on Tuesday at the Uganda Media Centre about the International Week of Deaf People that takes between 20-24 September, Ndezi said although many Ugandans have been affected by the continued closure of schools, the deaf have particularly paid a higher price.
Speaking through an interpreter, Ndezi said the interventions by the government to have online classes have left the deaf people out, hence necessitating the resumption of physical classes.
Media reports this week indicated that the government was ready to open education institutions starting with tertiary institutions in November and all other schools in January 2022.
Robert Nkwangu, the Executive Director of Uganda National Association of the Deaf also backed Ndezi by highlighting the problems that his constituency has had to endure ever since the outbreak of Covid-19 in Uganda in 2020.
“Deaf persons have faced many challenges in accessing health services, information, and education. This has resulted in them becoming high-risk persons who are easily exposed to Covid-19 infection. The government needs to streamline deaf persons in the Covid-19 response by enabling their inclusion in the national and district task forces, development of deaf-friendly information materials as well as provide inclusive Covid-19 relief packages,” Nkwangu who was speaking through an interpreter said.
Nkwangu also called upon the government to introduce sign language interpreters in all public places to take care of the needs of deaf people.
The State Minister for Disabilities Hellen Asamo said that deaf people play an important role in the development of the country. She called upon all people concerned to accord deaf people the necessary support they need for them to be on the same footing with other Ugandans.
This years celebrations which are taking place in Arua city are held under the theme, ‘Celebrating thriving Deaf Communities: We sign for human rights.’