Peshawar: 8th – 9th April 2015, first ever two days Provincial Consultation on disability legislation “Pakistan Disability Bill “ and Compilation of United Nation Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) Country Report is being organized By World Health Organization In Collaboration with Ministry of Law Justice and Human Rights, and Department, of Social Welfare and Special Education, KPK.
The Workshop was very well attended by the representatives from the Government Departments, NGOs and DPOs who gave their inputs and feedback during the highly interactive sessions on both the days.
Dr Maryam Mallick Technical Advisor on Disabilities and Rehabilitation WHO welcomed the participants and said that in Pakistan there was a dire need to have a comprehensive legislation on disabilities in line with the UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.
Cognizant of the deficiency in legal framework, WHO in collaboration with the Government, Disabled People Organization’s, NGOs and INGOs have formulated the first comprehensive legislation on disabilities and put before the stakeholders for further discussion in this workshop.
Department of Social Welfare and Special Education will be the custodian of the disability bill in KPK. She conducted the sessions for in depth discussion, discourse and deliberation on the KP Disability Legislation .
While addressing as a chief guest on the opening session of the workshop, Special assistant to the Chief Minister Prof.Dr. Mehr Taj Roghani reiterated her support for the disability reforms in KPK. She shared her efforts for establishment of Centre of Excellence for Special education and TABDEELI centre where all the requisite activities for ensuring the Rights of Persons with Disabilities will be streamlined. She also informed about her commitment to promulgate this law.
Speaker Provincial Assembly, Mr.Asad Qaisar honoured the closing session with his presence as the Chief Guest. He directed all the line department to fulfil the proceedings as early as possible and ascend it to the Assembly for final workup. The honourable speaker promised to work on this Act on priority basis once it is tabled before the Provincial Legislature.
This law in conformation with the rights of Persons with Disabilities as mentioned in Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Pakistan has ratified the UN Convention for the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in July 2011.
Each State must submit its initial report within two years after the Convention enters into force for that State. Pakistan was due to submit the country report in 2013 but due to lack of resources and issues related to devolution, the reports could not be submitted. In this regard Ministry of Law Justice and Human Rights in collaboration with WHO during this session compiled the provincial part of this report. This activity was led by Mrs. Huma A. Chughtai, a leading expert on Law, Gender and Human Rights issues.
The Workshop was highly appreciated by the participants that for the first time a comprehensive initiative has been taken regarding disabilities in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, where the policymakers/decision makers and person with disabilities were brought on one platform to jointly discuss the disability related issues and to come up with the way forward.