By MUHAMMED Sailu BAH
The Gambia Federation of the Disabled GFD, held their congress on Friday 30 October 2015, at the GAMCOTRAP complex in Kanifing Institutional Layout.
This congress was attended by members from 10 disabled orgnisation within the Gambia, to elect their highest decision making body to govern them for the next three years.
In his solidarity statement Madi Jorbateh programme officer TANGO, called the congress for the disabled a step towards the right direction, referring to it as a very noble course.
Mr. Jorbateh said it is an achievement for the person with disability to constitute and form an organization. He added that the most important assembly for persons with disability is a congress.
“A congress is an accountability task in which members of the organisation can hold their leaders accountable,” he remarked.
He said it also served as a platform where members of the GFD will be able to know how their resources were spent and whether their leaders have worked towards promoting the well-being of persons with disabilities in the Gambia.
Speaking about the challenges of the disabled face, Mr Jorbateh explained that the disabled are deprived of certain things or marginalized due to the ignorance of the society.
In conclusion he assured TANGO’s support to the GFD.
Giving an overview of the activity report Ebrima Dibassy Executive Director GFD explained the activities in which the GFD were engaged from 2013-2015, the achievements made and the challenges they faced within that period.
In giving the 2015 activity report Mr. Dibassy underscored the Key success registered within the three years. “Gamworks cilip project 14 million dalasis, successful completion of DES project, NACCUG macro finance for women with disabilities, new project with UN High Commission for human rights, Employment opportunities for PWDS at Standard Chartered Bank, completion of ratification of UNCRPD on 6 June 2015;” inclusion of PWDs in GBoS household census for every ten years.
In Conclusion he said, “2015 has been a challenging year for GFD is constrained both in human and financial resource, the new governing board should create new fund raising opportunities to sustain GFD’s operation.”
It was an interesting moment when the financial report for the past three years was spelt out to the General Assembly, participants at the congress were asking questions as well as clarification which was responded by the Treasure of the GFD.
Elections were later coordinated by an official of the Independent Electoral Commission Sambujang Njie as the head of the Election proceedings.
Finally Isatou Sanyang was elected as the Chairperson to lead the GFD for the next 3 years.
Other executive members are: Vice Chairperson Maimuna Secka, Secretary General Lamin Dibba, Treasurer Yahya Muhammed Bah, Publicity Secretary Momodou AF Bahoum and the ordinary elected members Ndey Nyang, Sulayman Colley, Awa Buoy and Ansumana Sano.