The Premier of Limpopo Province, Chupu Stan Mathabatha, called upon the people of the province to observe November 23, as it marks the start of the Disability Rights Awareness Month (DRAM).
The 2021 celebrations are taking place under the theme: ‘The Year of Charlotte Mannya Maxeke – Create and Realise an Inclusive Society, Upholding Rights of Persons with Disabilities’.
DRAM will be observed from November 3 till December 3.. The 2021 awareness month comes at a time when the country is still managing the COVID-19 pandemic, with the vaccination drive in full swing and Limpopo leading in terms of the number of people already vaccinated.
“We take this opportunity to thank all the people of Limpopo who in their multitudes went out to vote during the November 1st Local Government Elections. Voting allows all citizens to exercise their civic duty to choose a government of their choice. This is also critical for persons with disabilities who often feel their interests are neglected or ignored,” said Mathabatha.
Mathabatha added: “DRAM focuses on realising and celebrating the importance of disability rights, women empowerment, gender equality, elimination of gender-based violence (GBV) and femicide, amongst its sub-themes. GBV is the second pandemic our society faces and therefore, men are requested to protect, provide and love their families. Let us take good care of persons with disabilities at all times throughout the year.”
Some of the challenges affecting persons with disabilities include COVID-19 pandemic, fear of personal safety, discrimination, lack of reasonable accommodation in schools and workplace.
Premier Mathabatha called on government and all non-governmental structures to support and empower persons with disabilities to ensure they too benefit in the socio-economic packages provided in the democratic governance.
The 2021 activities will be observed virtually as it was in 2020. Government will use media platforms to draw attention of work it has done throughout the year to further the interest of persons with disabilities rights.