Persons living with disability cry foul in Lamu over being denied representation

Lamu county Assembly during a past session. FILE/PHOTO.

Lamu, KENYA: Persons living with disabilities in Lamu county have been left out of county nominations for MCA slots.

They had expected that atleast two seats for nominated MCA would go to them but that didn’t happen.

This comes just a day after Lamu MCAs took oath.

On Tuesday,a total of 16 MCAs were sworn in at the Lamu county assembly hall ready to begin their work,none among them was from the disabled community.

The disabled community are now crying foul saying they had met with governor Fahim Twaha who assured them that they would be respresented.

They had asked Twaha to incorporate them and ensure they are well respresented in the county government and other employment opportunities as per the constitution.

According to the Lamu Disabled Persons chairperson Simon Njagi,it was outright unfairness and discrimination that they had been denied representation.

Njagi said there were many literate and able persons in their midst who had been denied the opportunity to serve in the county.

“We are people who have also gone to school and acquired various skills.We can work just like any other person out there.We can deliver.We should be appointed so that we also get an opportunity to serve and feel like we are part of the lot.Why they keep leaving us out is something only they know,or maybe they pity us and think we are useless and cant do anything,” said Njagi.

He said the governor still had the chance to redeem and honor his promise during the appointment of County Executive Committee Members-CECs.

Njagi said the last county government openly spited them and refused to acknowledge and appoint them to any post and that they were hoping that things would be different with a new regime and a new governor.

“We didn’t have a single person with disabilities anywhere.We visited the governor on numerous occasions asking us to appoint even just one of us but that didn’t happen and so as an organization we can confidently state that we weren’t represented in the last county government and hope things will be different this time round,”said Njagi.

Among all the 8 CECs appointed in the last county government,not even one was from the disabled community.

They sauid there was need for the community of persons living with disabilities to be allowed to choose whoever they wish to represent them instead of having someone imposed on them.

“We know better who can represent us where.We don’t want direct appointments of some one who doesn’t even know who we are,”said Hindu Abdalla.

They called on the county government to ensure all offices and public places are fitted with the necessary equipment and built in a manner that will enable them to access and use such premises without a huddle.

“Many of us haven’t been to many of the county offices because we cant use them.You could be lame and are wheelchair bound,how do you climb up stairs?Some are blind and cant access such places.We need premises put up in a manner that is friendly to all since we are all citizens who need services from there,”said Njagi.