The National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) joins the international community to observe the International Day for Persons with Disability (PWD), which falls on the 3rd of December each year. This year’s celebration is themed, “Transformative Solutions for Inclusive Development; The Role of Innovation in Fueling an Accessible and Equitable World”.

The theme encourages global citizens to recognize the contributions of persons with various forms of visible and invisible disabilities in our societies. Sustainable Development Goals 8 and 10 admonish that PWDs are factored into every stage of the economic development process and should be given equal access to full development and reduce the inequality gap among citizens; a principle, the Persons with Disability Act 2006 (Act 715) affirms.

The 1992 Constitution in Article 29 Clause 1 to 8 spells out the rights of PWDs in Ghana. They have the right to live with their families, not to be subjected to different treatment, must be protected against all exploitation, and have access to facilities.

Technological innovations in the 21st Century such as assistive devices including wheelchairs and other walking aids, hearing aids, artificial limbs, and schools equipped with enhanced needs like the Dworwulu Special School and the Akropong School for the blind (where brailles are used) are best suited to enhance inclusion. Disability is not an inability; every citizen has a role to play in the country’s development.

The NCCE urges all Ghanaians to respect PWDs and accord them the needed support by actively engaging them in all social activities (in schools, markets, churches, workplaces and in our communities), protecting them from stigmatization, learning to communicate with them in sign language or using an interpreter and disability-friendly building facilities promote inclusiveness.

The Commission continues to remind citizens that anything is possible with determination and concerted efforts, and everyone must be involved, especially PWDs and the disadvantaged groups in our communities.

Our sustainable development as a nation must be tailor-made to cater for the needs of all. By this, the Sustainable Development Target in 2030, which envisions that no one is to be left behind in development can be achieved, and together, we can build a better Ghana and the world.

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