North West Premier Thandi Modise has committed to push all provincial government departments towards meeting the 2% targets for employment of people with disabilities. This follows a meeting that Premier Modise had with the North West Provincial Disability Forum (PDF) in Mahikeng on Wednesday afternoon.
The Premier also committed that her administration will review funding of organisations of/for people with disabilities, resourcing of programmes for people with disabilities and closely monitor their implementation across all spheres of government in the province.
"We will not do or think for people with disabilities but work with closely with you to mainstream disability across government work in the province because the dignity of all citizens including those of vulnerable groups is paramount," Modise assured 20 members of the forum she met with.
The PDF commented the Provincial department of Human Settlements, Public Safety and Liaison for its effort to meet its employment equity targets in relation to people with disabilities. The department recently recruited 15 people with disabilities some of whom are expected to assume duty at the end of this month.
At the conclusion of the meeting, Chairperson of the Provincial Disability Forum, Moagi Kodisang expressed optimism that representation of people with disabilities in Boards and Governance Structures and their economic empowerment would improve given assurances that the Premier gave to members of his structure.
"We are encouraged by the Premier's commitment that her office's Bursary scheme will as part of its contribution towards skills development ring fence some bursaries for people with disabilities," added Kodisang.
Modise also committed to look at interventions to reduce the backlog of assistive devices needed by 5132 people with disabilities across the province. Two thousand three hundred and eighty-three of the people identified as those in need of the devices are resident in Ngaka Modiri Molema District.
A follow up meetings with the MECs for Education and Training and Economic Development, Environment, Conservation and Tourism to look into implementation of inclusive education policy and concretise on economic empowerment of people with disabilities-enterprises and businesses in all sectors is to be held in due course.