The Ghana Federation of Disability Organizations (GFDO) has called for the establishment of a national monitoring team to monitor the use of the common fund for persons with disability
The Disability Federations said there is the need for effective monitoring of the funds, people should know how much money comes into the funds at any point in time, there should be checks on the last disbursement, report on beneficiaries, minutes of meetings etc.
Mr Fredrick Ofosu, Programmes Officer at the GFDO said this at a stakeholders meeting to validate the revised guidelines for the management and disbursement of the three per cent District Assemblies’ Common Fund for Persons with Disabilities
He said over the years governments have demonstrated commitment towards the establishment of the fund, however, no efforts have been made to ensure the efficient use of the funds for the intended beneficiaries.
“There has been issues of mistrust between persons with disabilities themselves and mistrust between persons with disabilities and officials of the district assemblies, there has been challenges as a result of the lack of effective monitoring,” Mr Ofosu said
He said until recently the audit service did not even ask about it when they do their routine monitoring of other funds in the district assemblies, however, some anomalies have been discovered.
Dr Eric Oduro Osae, Dean of Studies and Research at the Institute of Local Government, who represented the Minister of Local Government at the meeting, suggested the establishment of a national disability funds aside the existing funds to cater for the needs of persons with disabilities
He explained that a national disability fund should pool resources from all other established funds like the GETfund to help give persons with disabilities a sustainable life
Participants at the meeting deliberated on the fact that there is a lot of pressure on the funds which is able to serve just a fraction of persons with disabilities and called for widening of the funds to cover more persons with disabilities
The participants also agreed that parents and care givers of children with disabilities should benefit from the funds.
The District Assemblies’ Common Fund for persons with Disabilities was established in year 2005 to support the income generating activities of individual persons with disabilities as a means of economic empowerment
The fund among others also has the objectives of providing educational support for children, students and trainees with disabilities, build the capacity of organizations for persons with disabilities at the district level to enable them advocate and support persons with disabilities to have access to technical aids and other assistive devices and equipment.