Hoima disabled women speak out on their plight during COVID-19

The biting effects of the COVID-19 outbreak in Uganda is affecting people indiscriminately, but worse for women with disabilities, according to their leaders.

In an exclusive interview with Kazinjema News, Ms Joy Rufunda, the Hoima District Chairperson for Women With Visual Disabilities, narrates that they continue going through tough times though the government has tried to loosen the lockdown restrictions.

Ms Rufunda says she has quoted at least seven cases of sexually abused disabled female children in the district since government announced the lockdown.

She claims that security forces assaulted some visually impaired women and men while implementing the lockdown restrictions including transporting more than two persons on a motorcycle yet visually impaired women could not move without a guide.

Ms Rufunda adds that visually impaired women find trouble travelling from one point to another due to costs involved in transporting a guide. she said that drivers are no longer merciful to persons with disabilities due to passenger number restrictions.

The chairperson calls upon President Yoweri Museveni to weigh in and assist them since most of their national and international donors have now cut off support due to economic challenges caused by the outbreak of COVID-19.

Audio: Rufunda in an interview with Kazinjema News (English)

Kazi-njema News witnessed a high degree of prevention against coronavirus at Ms Rufunda’s home as her 15-year-old daughter, Hope Agaba, ensured whoever comes closer to her mother is sanitised and puts on a face mask.

The Hoima Resident District Commissioner (RDC), Mr Samuel Kisembo Araali, says in his service, he does his best to ensure that priority is given to vulnerable groups of people including persons with disabilities and expectant mothers.

He regrets if security abuses and violations were meted out.

Audio: Kisembo talking about handling vulnerable persons (English)

Reports all over have indicated an increase in the rate of violation and abuses of the rights of vulnerable groups including girls and women with disabilities during the COVID-19 instigated lockdown.


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