Revamped disability structure to get P500 000 annually

Government has committed to injecting  P500 000 into the amended Sir Seretse Khama Memorial Fund for People with Disabilities annually to improve prospects of success.

This was said by Minister for Presidential Affairs, Governance and Public Administration Mr Kabo Morwaeng when commissioning the fund and its eight-member board of trustees in Gaborone on Tuesday.

Stating that government remained committed and supportive to improving the quality of life of people with disabilities, he appealed for donations from the public and corporates to help empower the demographic.

Mr Morwaeng said the fund, initially established as Sir Seretse Khama Memorial Fund for the Handicapped in 1981, was meant to honour the legacy of the first president with respect to disability issues.

In 2018, it was amended to the current name and appointment of the board varied from cabinet to minister as a way of promoting speedy assistance of customers, he explained.

The minister said the board was also reduced in size from 15 to eight members, all public officers for purposes of cost saving and improved service provision.  

Handing over the new instrument to the board, Minister Morwaeng implored members to work diligently to promote the independence of people with disabilities.

He revealed that cabinet had approved accession to the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Through the convention, issues concerning people with disabilities would take their rightful place on the government agenda, he said.

Mr Morwaeng said cabinet had also approved the Revised National Disability Policy aligned to the convention and other development frameworks.

 He said the policy would be presented to the July Parliament for adoption.

The ministry’s permanent secretary, Ms Pearl Ramokoka, reiterated government’s commitment to the cause of people with disabilities.

 She said the purpose of the fund and  its board was to provide the demographic with additional support.

 

Board members are Ms Ramokoka as chairperson, Ministry of Health and Wellness deputy permanent secretary, Mr Moses Keetile, Ms Thapelo Phuthego representing Ministry of Nationality, Immigration and Gender Affairs, Ms Goitseone Kokorwe, Ministry of Employment, Labour Productivity and Skills Development, Mr Patrick Zibochwa, Ministry of Health and Wellness, special protection director, Mr Joseph Kgabanyane as well as director-Coordinating Office for People with Disabilities Mr Thomas Motingwa. ENDS

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