Commonwealth MPs with disability urge colleagues to respect rights
Members of Parliament (MPs) with disability (CPwD) within the Commonwealth are calling for their rights to be respected by their colleague MPs so that their needs can be factored into the general plans of the various parliaments, especially access to buildings.
Leading the charge, the chairperson of the group, Laura Kanushu, an Uganda MP, told the Daily Graphic after a committee meeting behind closed doors that the needs of such people had been downplayed over the years because of their mobility challenge.
"Our mobility challenge does not derail our intellect and our ability to contribute to debates in parliaments across the Commonwealth," she said.
Needs of disabled
Ms Kanushu observed that although most Assembly (Parliament) Houses had been built without factoring the needs of disabled, a few are living up to the billing, including Ghana "and it's refreshing to see."
At the ongoing Commonwealth Parliamentary Association (CPA) conference in Accra, the CPA reported on its recent CPwD activities, such as its capital investment fund supporting Commonwealth Parliaments to become more accessible.
About 700 delegates are attending the conference which began at the Accra International Conference Centre in Accra from September 30 to October 6, 2023.
The annual event, on the theme: “The Commonwealth Charter 10 years on: Values and principles for Parliaments to uphold” is being attended by about 700 delegates and hosted by Ghana’s Parliament and CPA Ghana Branch for the first time.
The CPA is the only parliamentary association that brings together national, state, provincial and territorial legislatures, and its membership includes almost 180 Parliaments and Legislatures across the Commonwealth.