What the disAbled Kenyan parliamentarians need to do:

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The Kenyan Parliament has been a vocal promoter of disability inclusion and the leave no one behind agenda. There is a Kenya Disability
Parliamentary Association
(KEDIPA. Which is composed of all disabled parliamentarians and they have been focusing their energies on the disability agendas.
This caucus was formed I after the first nominated and elected members of parliament in 2013.
Although not much can be written home about the first group.
Its prudent to say they tried their level best in the murky unforgiving environment of the larger parliamentarians.
This is not to say that they should not enhance the advocacy but it’s a journey.
The great lessons learnt should guide the new parliamentarians with disabilities of 2017 to 2022 to focus with a few specific legislation which affect the most persons with disabilities.
Furthermore, disability became a priority issue. During the last year twin election, all parties
gave some mention to disabled people in their manifestos
.
Both Jubilee and NASA promised lots of goodies. To the largest minority group in Kenya which is at 15 %.
Moreover, as usual they remained campaigned promises.
Thus, they evaporated in the new main 4 big agendas of the president and also the building bridges initiative.
However, the door of opportunity is here.
This is where now the Kenya Disability
Parliamentary Association
(KEDIPA
(KEDIPA need to rise to the occasion and make the voice of the disabled be hard.
Through this the policy makers and stakeholders will be able to incorporate disability concerns and make no one to be left behind.
This can be done through public participation, trainings and media awareness.
The caucus can incorporate the big 4 agendas in their execution agenda in the 12th
parliament. Persons with disabilities in Kenya have shuttered dreams which can only be revived through having proper policies and legislations which can address and transform the barriers that persons with disabilities face.
In addition, utilization of humanitarian model in development and researching will enable this to happen.
Absolutely, KEDIPA can borrow the best practises from the women parliamentarians who have been able to legislate and lobby for support in both executive and legislative arms of government.
Nevertheless, huge challenges still hound the disabled and continuing barriers surrounding disabled people’s equitable participation in social and economic life, means promises
are not resulting in action. The foundation of the global disability movement is “Nothing about us, without us”, as such the participation of persons with
disabilities in decision making processes is crucial.
Meeting the 5 % threshold in public appointments need to be enhanced at all national and county levels.
At list the nomination of Washington Sadi to the administrative and justice commission is a step in the right direction
The Kenyan disabled parliamentarians must DO BETTER since they carry 6 million dreams of hope, equity and inclusion for the disabled
They should realize that as Disabled MPs they are powerful and necessary champions and role models. But we also need urgent transformative change. We need to create space for all marginalized
people in decision-making processes; we need to ensure full representation, and we need to ensure the parliamentary procedure is accessible so that disabled
parliamentarians can play their role in policy creation and implementation.
Its shameful at this era the Kenyan parliament is not accessible.
Paul Mugambi is a senior policy consultant and commentator on social public discoes.