CAD minister forgets special persons again
ISLAMABAD, July 5: As many as 80 special persons and children on Thursday kept waiting for the minister of Capital Administration and Development (CAD) for over two hours but the dignitary never turned up.
Surprisingly, it is not for the first time that the minister has ignored the special persons. Last month too, during a function held at a hotel in Sector G-6, special children had to wait for the minister for as long as four hours but in the end they were informed that he could not come because of his engagements, it has been learnt.
Hafiz Qamar, relative of a special person while talking to Dawn said, “We were informed by the organisers that Minister for CAD, Nazar Mohammad Gondal will honour the function as a chief guest. Therefore, the participants should make sure that special persons should be well dressed for the occasion but it was disappointing that he did not bother to come and attend the function of those who deserved his attention the most.”
Shams Khan, relative of another special person said: “Last month, the minister did the same when he was invited at a local hotel in G-6 Markaz. He did not bother to come and special children, who had done all the rehearsals of presenting bouquets to the honourable minister, had to go back, disappointed.
“Ministers do not have the right to break the hearts of special persons and if they are to remain absent from such functions, they should better not confirm their availability.”
The seminar, the minister missed, was organised by Directorate General of Special Education and Social Welfare in connection with commemoration of ‘One Year of the Ratification of the United Nation Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD)’.
In absence of the minister, Federal Secretary CAD, Imtiaz Inayat Elahi, presided over the seminar and said that economic empowerment of persons with disabilities and their integration in mainstream income-generation activities was essential for an inclusive society.Elahi further said the micro-credit facility for disabled persons was an important initiative as it would provide them with an opportunity to start small-scale businesses which will eventually lead to their economic empowerment.
He added that it was equally important to engage and provide them with guidance for amicable utilisation of micro-credit facility so that ultimate beneficiaries should be the disabled persons themselves.
Secretary (CAD) distributed 10 sewing machines, 20 pairs of crutches, 25 wheelchairs, five assistive aids for blind persons and three laptops among persons with disabilities. As many as 10 persons with disabilities were provided micro-credit facility with the collaboration of ‘Helping Hand Relief and Development’ amounting to Rs35, 000 so that they could start small-scale business whereas an equal number of them having physical and hearing impairment were given jobs in international food chains.
Similarly, three of them were given keys of Tuck Shops specially established for their income generation.
While speaking on the occasion, Syed Mustafain Kazmi, Director General Special Education and Social Welfare said the government had ratified the UN Convention on July 5 last year which aimed to promote, protect and ensure the full and equal enjoyment of all human rights and fundamental freedom by the persons with disabilities at all levels.
Mustafain Kazmi, while talking to Dawn over the absence of minister, said the minister must be engaged in some important matter due to which he could not come. He claimed that federal secretary was representing minister in the seminar.
Mohammad Saleh, Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the CAD minister through short messaging service (SMS) informed the reporter that due to some important engagements Nazar Mohammad Gondal could not participate in the function and any inconvenience caused by his failure to attend the function was deeply regretted.