President’s and PM’s messages for international day of persons with disabilities

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Theme: Empowerment of persons with disabilities and their communities around the world
“Keeping the promise: Mainstreaming disability in the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) towards 2015 and beyond”

The annual observance of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on 3rd December was established by the International Year for Disabled Persons (1981). The Day aims to promote a better understanding of disability issues with a focus on the rights of persons with disabilities and gains to be derived from the integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of the political, social, economic and cultural life of their communities. The goal of full and effective participation of persons with disabilities in society and development was established by the World Programme of Action concerning Disabled Persons, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in 1982.

How the Day may be observed
Include: Observance of the Day provides opportunities for participation by all stakeholders – Governments, UN system organizations, civil society and organizations of persons with disabilities – to focus on issues related to the inclusion of persons with disabilities in the MDGs.

Organize: Hold forums, public discussions and information campaigns in support of the Day focusing on disability issues and development, finding innovative ways and means by which persons with disabilities and their families can be further integrated into the development agenda.

Celebrate: Plan and organize performances everywhere to showcase – and celebrate – the contributions by persons with disabilities to the communities in which they live as agents of development and change.

Take Action: A major focus of the Day is practical action to mainstream disability in all aspects of development, as well as to further their participation in social life and development on the basis of equality. Take action to highlight progress and obstacles in implementing disability-sensitive policies, as well as promote public awareness of the contributions by persons with disabilities to the development of their communities.

MESSAGE FROM MR. ASIF ALI ZARDARI
PRESIDENT OF THE ISLAMIC REPUBLIC OF PAKISTAN
ON THE OCCASION OF INTERNATIONAL DISABILITIES DAY –

The Observance today of International Day of persons with disabilities aims to promote an understanding of disability issue and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well being of persons with disabilities.

The theme of this year “Realizing the Millennium Development Goal for All: Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities and their Committees around the World” is most relevant to present day challenges.

The disabled people are special people with rights and society should structured in a way that it meets the needs of all its citizens.

Our special brothers and sisters are men and women of great courage. They have taught us, who suffer from no mental or physical disability, that we will never be able to count the blessings of Allah for bestowing a life free of any disability to pursue a life of their choice.

We need to take urgent steps to attend to the special needs of special people. The Government fully realizes this and has taken steps to achieve a comparable standard of service for disable persons as exists in other civilized nations of the world.

Government has introduced Special computerized identity Cards for the persons with Disabilities besides taking other tangible steps including provision of free medical treatment at Federal Government Hospitals and implementation of 2% quota for their employment provision of 50% concession in the air and rail fares is another important facility extended by the present government to persons with disabilities.

On this International day, it is incumbent upon us all including government institutions, civil society, philanthropists, and International community to put in coordinate and concerted efforts to achieve the rights based approach to remove the attitudinal, physical and social barriers to meet the Millennium Development Goals along with active participation of persons with disabilities.

PRIME MINISTER SYED YUSUF RAZA GILANI’S MESSAGE FOR INTERNATIONAL
DAY OF PERSON WITH DISABILITIES:

International Day for the persons with Disabilities is celebrated throughout the World as an annual feature on 3rd December in order to pay homage and to show solidarity with special persons. This year, the theme of the day is realizing the millennium development goal for all. Empowerment of persons with disabilities and their communities around the world. The theme of the day is based on goal of full and equal enjoyment of human rights and participation in society by persons with disabilities.

Pakistan Peoples Party has a vision to transform the lives of our people from one of despair into one of hope and opportunity. Our government is committed to build a hopeful future for all segments of our society including the ones with disability. We are determined to make Pakistan a place where everyone has the same opportunities to participate in all walks of life with dignity and self-esteem. Our government is fully alive and conscious of its duties towards the special persons. This is a people’s friendly administration and special persons being the most vulnerable segment of the society are paid special attention by this government.

The cabinet has recently approved the provision of insurance cover for the severely disabled persons. The Cabinet has also approved a plan for providing Mirco Credit Facilities and 50% concession in air and rail fare to the persons disabilities. The cabinet has also decided to ensure implementation of 2% quota for employment of persons with disabilities and to consider increasing funds of the development schemes of the Ministry of Social Welfare and Special Education. An inter-ministerial committee has also been constituted to deliberate upon the Cabinet decisions and submit its recommendations.

The UN General Assembly had adopted a convention on the Rights of persons with Disabilities on December 13, 2006. The convention obligates the governments to implement existing human rights for people with disabilities on an equal basis rather than creating new human rights standards. It is a historic achievement as it gives status and authority to disability as human rights issues. My government is taking necessary steps for ratification of the convention on rights of persons with disabilities.

On this International Day, let us reaffirm the need to make special provision for those members of the society who suffer from the effects of disabilities. Creation of special facilities for education, training the rehabilitation of disabled persons is being given central importance by the government to meet the millennium development of goals along with active participation of persons with disability.

Hundreds of disabled persons and special children took part in rallies, demonstrations and walks in different parts of the country on Thursday to mark the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

In Hyderabad, Sindh Minister for Special Education Syed Ali Nawaz Shah Rizvi said the government would launch an awareness campaign to eliminate sense of deprivation among special children and create a sense of responsibility among their parents and society.

Addressing participants of a walk organised by the Sindh Special Education Department here on Thursday, the minister called upon parents of special children to send their children to special education centers.

In Pakistan. there are many NGOs working towards the welfare of persons with disabilities and to improve their quality of life.

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