By Kesah Princely in Buea.
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has carried out a giant project, to mitigate the effects of the ongoing armed conflict on persons with disabilities in the affected North West and South West regions.
Officially donating materials to support disability meanstreaming recently, WHO’s Field Coordinator for the South West region, Dr. Aliyou Moustapha revealed that empowering persons with disabilities is a top priority for his organisation.
The project which has been ongoing for over six months according to the health expert, was aimed at providing health emergency humanitarian assistance to vulnerable populations in Anglophone Cameroon.
Speaking to TWIF NEWS after the event, the WHO Field Coordinator for the South West intimated that disability meanstreaming should not just be said in words, but matched by action. This, to him, could be done by arming persons with disabilities with skills to better fight for their rights.
“We think persons with disabilities are no longer at the receiving end. That is why WHO is empowering them to do their own things and not depend on people,” Dr Aliyou said.
While handing over office equipment including laptops, chairs, tables, a printer and other assistive devices to the Coordinating Unit of Associations of Persons with Disabilities (CUAPWD), South West region, Dr Aliyou Moustapha entreated authorities of CUAPWD to use the materials judiciously.
CUAPWD’s Executive President, Valerie Agbor appreciated the gesture, stressing that his office needs more collaboration with other local and international bodies, inorder to effectively champion the cause of disability meanstreaming in Cameroon.
“No one can carry out advocacy better than we persons with disabilities ourselves,” the leader with visual impairment added.
Also present at the event was UN OCHA’s Coordinator for the North West and South West, James Nunan.
He said persons with disabilities were among the most affected victims of the ongoing war in Anglophone Cameroon.
The UN official called on actors of the conflict to respect international humanitarian law so as to mitigate the effects of the crisis on vulnerable populations.