NEILI (Pajhwok): People with disabilities in central Daikundi province say not only their other rights are violated, but the three-percent quota of their employment in government offices has never been observed.
According to People with Disabilities Improvement Association in Daikundi, currently less than one percent of government officers in the province are physically challenged people.
A number of these differently able people talked to Pajhwok Afghan News and complained about not receiving their wages on time, lack of empowerment programs, abusive treatment at society.
Sohaila, 26, lost one of her legs after a mortar shell hit her house 12 years ago in Kajran district of Daikdundi.
She said not giving jobs disabled people in government organs and lack of empowerment programs for these people were their main challenges.
A political science graduate, Sohaila said, “I graduated two years ago, since I have been searching for a job.”
He said most of people with disabilities faced problems such as unemployment, lack of empowerment programs, social reactions and harassments from people and even from their own families.
He called economic problems and joblessness main challenges of people with disabilities and said, “Based on the law, three percent quota of employment in government offices should be dedicated to people with disabilities, but this right has never been observed in Daikundi, bodily affected people who have higher education are tired seeking jobs.”
Talib said he knew many disabled youths who had higher education but were looking for jobs and facing an unknown fate.
According to Article 22 of People with Disabilities’ and Martyr Victims’ Rights Bill, three percent of government and non-government jobs should be dedicated to people with disabilities.
Besides unemployment, people with disabilities are complaining about many other problems.
Talib said empowerment programs were only for educating uneducated persons with disabilities but the programs lacked vocational courses to help people get job after graduation.
“Another problem for us is abusive behavior in families and society, this is a very serious problem that hurts us all,” he said.
“Some people call us lame, disabled, deaf and dumb instead of taking our names, some of us stay unmarried the whole life,” he said.
Sayed Talib is not alone suffering from these problems, a number other people with disabilities also carry a huge burden of difficulties in their life.
Abbas, 30, lost one of his upper limbs in a rocket attack 10 years ago and now his children and wife are looked after by his brothers.
He ran a bakery before hit by the bomb. “A human who was self-sufficient is now in need of his family, how his life will look like, I am a needy person now,” he said.
About latency in his grants, he said, “I had not received my grants since two years.”
He said the grants of people with disabilities were according to their disability type.
Abbas said he received 8,000 afghanis a year in grants and it helped his children buy notebooks and pens.
He asked the People with Disabilities and Martyrs Department of Daikundi to pay the grants of the affected people.
These handicapped people asked the government to pay attention to improving their livelihood condition and give them their employment quota and provide them with education and housing facilities.
They also asked people and societies to respect handicapped people as normal persons and avoid calling them with abusive words.
Mohammad Danish, head of People with Disabilities Empowerment Association, said, “We are in contact with people with disabilities, they have many problems.”
He also complained about non-payment of grants on time, low employment in government offices, lack of empowerment programs for the disables.
Meanwhile, Sakina Haidari, Daikundi governor’s spokesman, about low employment of people with disabilities, said, “We accept that the article 22 has been violated and currently less than one percent of these people are employed in government offices, but the real problem is that most of handicapped people are uneducated.”
She said they would try to employ people with disabilities in government offices based on their qualification and ability.
Hussain Haidari, acting director of Daikundi People with Disabilities and Martyrs Department, said that there were more than 6,000 handicapped people in the province.
He said grants of 50 percent of these people had been paid as the rest of grants were yet to reach the department.
Haidari said grants of some of handicapped people remained unpaid for several years due to unknown reasons and officials in Kabul also did not provide clarification in this regard.