Vissually impaired people demand rights

16 Oct 2014 17:10pm
OUTAPI, 16 OCT (NAMPA) - Visually impaired people from across Namibia on Wednesday gathered at Outapi in the Omusati Region to commemorate White Cane Day, which is marked internationally on 15 October every year.
Deputy Prime Minister Marco Hausiku officiated at the commemoration.
The theme of this year's commemoration is 'Even without sight, there is vision for a world with equal human rights and independence for all'.
Addressing those present, Hausiku noted that the white cane is acknowledged as a symbol representing blindness and mobility, and is used by visually impaired people across the world.
“Commemoration of this day creates awareness amongst the general community and encourages greater assistance to support the activities and endeavours of visually impaired people in our society,” Hausiku said.
He added that the commemoration of White Cane Day at the same time creates a platform to educate the public on the aspiration, hopes and abilities of people who are blind or visually impaired.
The Deputy Prime Minister went on to say organisations of visually impaired people the world over are working hard to ensure that visually impaired people are recognised and integrated in all fields of life and treated equally.
Hausiku said government ministries are expected to balance their financial distribution to accommodate the needs of visually impaired people.
The coordinator of the Namibian Federation of the Visually Impaired, Daniel Trum also addressed the gathering and told those present that the commemoration at Outapi was the main national event.
He said for many decades, disability has been regarded as a medical issue, and this has contributed to ignorance and discrimination towards people with disabilities.
Trum said society should understand that disability is no longer a medical issue, but a human rights issue.
“We demand the recognition of our fundamental human rights,” he said.