5 Proposals For A Disability Inclusive Malaysia Madani
From Boleh Space, Society of the Blind in Malaysia (SBM), Deaf Advocate & Well-Being National Council Malaysia (DAWN), National Early Childhood Intervention Council (Necic), Rangkaian Solidariti Demokratik Pesakit Mental (Siuman) and United Voice.
On Jan 19, Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim launched the Malaysia Madani concept as the main agenda for his administration.
The rakyat, irrespective of social and economic background, welcomed the prime minister’s aspiration as it is proactive, progressive and timely.
In his speech, the prime minister touched on key issues such as good governance, democracy, social justice, recognition of the rights of all citizens, economic and social well-being of the people, and other critical aspects.
Anwar, in a clear and unequivocal manner, stressed that the direction of the country must be guided by significant priorities that require an approach cutting across political, social, economic, environmental and technological aspects.
The aspirations of Malaysia Madani have touched on the issues and needs of the rakyat, especially the marginalised groups, which include persons with disabilities (OKU).
After examining the contents of the Malaysia Madani agenda, we see a window of opportunity for the government to strengthen its approach to disability-inclusive development in all elements of national and community development.
Therefore, we urge the government to take the following actions immediately:
1. Upgrade the OKU Development Department (JPOKU) to a full-fledged department under the women, family and community development ministry, with at least 50% of its officers and employees being those with disabilities. If there is no qualified OKU candidate for the position of director, a goal should be set to have such a OKU director within five years.
2. Set up a parliamentary special select committee on OKU affairs and table the full report of the National Action Plan for OKU 2016-2022.
3. Establish a disability affairs unit under the office of the secretary-general of each ministry and the (state) secretary’s office in each state. This disability affairs unit should be responsible for:
Implementing the 1% disabled public servants policy in every ministry and state government.Ensuring ministries and government bodies or government-linked corporations implement policies related to disabled communities, such as the National Disability Action Plan 2016-2022, the OKU Act 2008, By-laws 34A of the Uniform Building Bylaws (UBBL34A), a zero reject policy in schools, and an inclusive education policy in higher education institutions.4. Establishing a Disability Rights Commission, with the members appointed from among qualified OKU, with each member representing a different category of OKU. This commission will be responsible for educating the disabled community on their rights, advising on policy and legislation, and conducting investigations. This is to ensure that the rights of the disabled community are fought for and that every violation of the rights of the disabled is investigated and resolved.
5. Increasing the number of senators representing OKU, from different categories of the disabled. Improve the nomination, screening and appointment process for the positions of senators representing OKU, members of the National Council for OKU and members of the technical committees under this council.
Provide a directory system so that senators and members of the council and technical committees can be contacted openly.The empowerment, development and inclusion of OKU must be embedded as part of the pillars and commitment of Malaysia Madani.
A great civilisation should be measured by its success in recognising and embracing diversity.
Good governance needs to be measured by its ability to support and include the most marginalised groups of people in society. - FMT
The views expressed are those of the writers and do not necessarily reflect those of MMKtT.
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