The Youth Bridge Foundation (YBF) has implored the government as well as Metropolitans, Municipal and District Assemblies (MMDAs) to make national and composite budgets accessible to persons who are visually impaired.
Executive Director of the Foundation, Seth Oteng said the achievement of this will ensure that persons with disabilities will not be alienated in the governance of the country at both the local and national levels.
At the opening of YBF project in Akwapim North, he said: “It is time we made vision count.”
The project commenced on the 2017 World Sight Day with a sensitisation forum organised for youth with disabilities on the value of their participation in decision-making processes.
It was also to build their capacity to participate in district planning processes.
The goal of the project, funded by the Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA), is to secure the future of young people in Ghana through improved juvenile justice and the inclusion of persons with disability in decision-making processes.
Also speaking at the forum was Municipal Chief Executive of the Akwapim North Municipal Assembly, Dennis Aboagye who thanked YBF and OSIWA for their laudable initiative.
He also expressed his commitment to working with the two organisations to enhance the participation of persons with disabilities in the decision making processes of the Municipal Assembly.
Mr Aboagye noted the government is committed to improving the lives of visually impaired citizens beyond "White Cane ceremonies."
To back his pledge, he requested schools for persons with disabilities to audit and present their infrastructure needs to the various assemblies for portions of the District Assembly Common Fund (DACF) to be allocated to them.
Former Regional Manager, Bank of Ghana (BOG) William Oheneaku-Ntow also used the opportunity to call on Ghanaians to see the responsibility of addressing the needs of persons with disabilities as a collective one.
He said it is the duty of all the citizens to ensure that vulnerable persons in the nation are taken care of and are made to feel part of society.
On her part, Headmistress of the Akropong School of the Blind, Marherla Narh was also appreciative to YBF and OSIWA for their commitment to championing the needs of persons with disabilities.
On behalf of YBF and OSIWA, Mr Oteng donated copies of educational audio recordings on MMDAs Composite Budget Making Planning Process and the role of youth to the school.