FOCUSING DISABILITY RIGHTS AT MALAWI’S 57 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE  6th July, 2021

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On behalf of Malawians of disabilities, we join all Malawians in commemorating the 57th independence cerebration. I n 1964, Malawians were filled optimism of  a Malawi that is free from whatever form of oppression, marginalization and above all, stigma and discrimination. However, 57 years down the line,  persons with disabilities  experience more of the affirmation.

It is therefore, our call to the government and all other stake holders to ensure persons with disabilities in Malawi enjoy  rights  freedom to fullest just like any other citizen.

It is through this, that the independence will be real. What we need is real inclusion and genuine accessibility.

 

 

 

 

  • RISING ABOVE DISABILITY

    It has proven that disability is not inability as Machinga District has re-elected Alexander Short as District Council Chair while in Blantyre, the disability movement has registered another milestone where Sigere  Pemba  has been elected as chairperson of the council. Both Short and Pemba were elected as Councillors of Machinga and Blantyre respectively in 2019 Tripartite Elections.

    In his written congratulatory message, FEDOMA Acting Executive Director, Simon Munde, said both Short and Kasai proved a point in 2019 by coming out victorious in the Local Government Elections, saying they are the pride of disability movement.

    “For Alexander Short was subsequently being elected as chairperson of the Machinga District Council and now he has retained his sit in an election held on 3rd July, 2021 in Machinga and this is no mean achievement.”reads in part.

    He added that the election of these two persons with disabilities is a true mark of inclusion while ensuring parity between persons with disabilities and persons without disabilities in our society.

    Councils are now conducting elections of chair persons to save for the remaining Four years before Malawians will go for another tripartite election in 20125.

     

  • EXPOSING THE POSITIVE LIFE OF PERSONS WITH ALBINISM

       

    The united  Nations General Assembly passed a resolution on December 18th 2014, designating June 13 every  year as an International  Albinism Awareness Day. This landmark resolution reaffirmed the international community commitment to albinism advocacy.

    Albinism is a genetically inherited non-contagious dissimilarity that is both sexes and occurs in all places around the world , regardless of origin civilization, or culture. Albinism is characterized by a lack of pigment (Melamin) in the hair, skin, and eyes making the person vulnerable to the sun and strong light. As a result, particularly everyone with albinism is visually impaired and is at a risk for skin cancer. There is no therapy or cure for albinism.

    Malawi joins the rest of the world in commemorating the International Albinism Awareness Day on 13th June, 2021. However, the main commemorative event will take place on 26th June  2021  at Nkhotakota Community Ground in Nkhotakota District.

    This year’s theme in Malawi is  ‘Exposing the positive life of persons with albinism’.  Internationally the theme is ‘Strengthen against all odds’  This comes at a time that persons with albinism in Malawi had continued living in fear considering that within the year, some more cases on the atrocities them  have been registered. This is  a cause of a concern as it significantly and negatively affect the full and effective participation of persons with albinism in various socio-economic endeavors. Although persons with albinism face such atrocities, they contribute meaningfully to the national development agenda. It is with this regard, this year’s them  was chosen  to celebrate the achievements and successes of persons with albinism worldwide. It is  also a call to stand in solidarity with persons with albinism throughout their challenges.

    As we commemorate the day, Federation of Disability  Organizations in Malawi  FEDOMA as an apex  body of 12 Organizations of Persons with Disabilities  OPDs such include:  APAM, APPDM, DIWODE, DWOOM, DROM, MANAD, MUB, MEHUCA, NEA, PODCAM, SIAMA  & VIHEMA  would like  to call upon the government  of  republic  of Malawi to take serious measures to curb these malpractices.  This involves handling the fight against the vice not in the manner of business as usual but business unusual.

    It will be important  at a point Malawi is to sick international help more especially in investigating  the cases  and discover the market.  The fact the  prosecution is able to secure conviction, is sign enough that capacity is there to  investigate wrong doings  but the continued  attacks confirms that the investigative processes is still missing a piece   to establish this, surely the market  hence our call.

    In addition, we are calling upon the Malawi judiciary to employ deliberate measures so as to expediate the process of trying the many outstanding albinism related cases. Much  as it is appreciated that the judicature is still grapping  with so many other outstanding cases, speeding up the case in question, has a strong bearing in efforts to deal with these atrocities.

    As we commemorate the day, we would like to wish all the best  to  all  Malawians with albinism and shine  more from 13th June, 20221 and beyond.

FEDOMA URGES GENDER TECHNICAL WORKING GROUPS TO BE INCLUSIVE

The Federation of Disability Organizations in Malawi FEDOMA has urged gender technical working groups in Mzimba District to help address rights of persons with disabilities in their localities saying persons with disabilities for so long have not being given space to enjoy their rights as there is no inclusive environment.

The development comes during a workshop training conducted by FEDOMA and UNDP with an aim to impart knowledge to the  Gender Technical Working Groups (GTWGs) saying such groups are capable to lobby for inclusion since they are empowered with rights for the marginalized groups.

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FEDOMA INTENSIFIES CAMPAIGN ON DISABILITY MAINSTREAMING

The Federation of Disability Organizations in Malawi FEDOMA believes that inclusion can be attained if sharing of ideas and best practices is enhanced at policy level by all stake holders. The remarks come amid challenges government is facing in promoting inclusion in public hospitals. FEDOMA has since intensified campaign to train health workers and other stake holders on disability mainstreaming.

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EMMANUEL TV GIVES A HAND TO APAM

     

It was a colorful event at FEDOMA secretariat where  Emmanuel TV Southern Region Chapter donates assorted items to the Association  of Persons with Albinism in Malawi APAM in an effort to alleviate challenges persons with albinism are encountering in their livelihood.

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