Chanco students threaten demonstrations to enforce disability rights

Students from the Chancellor College (Chanco) a constituent college of the University of Malawi have fired a warning shot that they will adopt ‘the HRDC way’ of demonstrations coupled with court litigation if authorities at the institution continue to procrastinate on improving the conditions of students with disabilities at the college.

Participants of the seminar in a group photo
Dr Chilemba-Patron of Disability Rights Clinic at Chanco
Part of the audience keenly following the disability rights clinic

The warning was made during a staff-student seminar organized by the Disability rights clinic of the Faculty of Law at the institution on Thursday.

The seminar was organized under the theme: “Inclusion of persons with disabilities in higher learning.”

While applauding Chancellor College as the only institution of higher learning that enrolls students with disabilities in the country, it was learnt with sadness that the college is not doing enough to make the said students enjoy their rights.

“The main library building is discriminatory as there it is inaccessible to our friends with physical disabilities. Again, one wonders why the college is still dilly-dallying to employ official helpers for students say with visual impairment. We have been pushing for this to no avail,” said one participant who asked his name not to be disclosed in the media.

The concerns catalogued above were also echoed by the patron for the clinic Dr Enock Chilemba, a passionate disability rights defender, who let the cat out of the bag saying: “We will now have no choice but to demonstrate on campus and if need be, to drag our own college to court as one way of compelling authorities to respect rights of students with disabilities on campus.”

Concurring with Chilemba was Senior Resident Magistrate Rodrick Michongwe who prodded students to stop mere rhetoric but rather take bold actions to enforce rights of students with disabilities at the institution.

“We have listened to good presentations, wonderful recommendations have also been made but in the final analysis, this will be a futile exercise if no action is taken. Let’s walk the talk even if it means seeking legal redress on some of these issues,” he said.

It appears the current crop of students at Chancellor College are so passionate to see that students with disabilities are enjoying to the fullest their social, political and academic rights.

For instance, most of the students this reporter interviewed after the seminar said they are hopeful to make history next week by ushering Geofrey Phunyanya, a fearless, charismatic, listening, energetic and no nonsense third year student with Albinism Phunyanya  who is contesting as President of the Students union of Chancellor College (SUCC).

According to official statistics, Chancellor College has over 80 students with various forms of disabilities ranging from visual impairments, Learning difficulties as well as people living with Albinism among other forms.

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Angoni apaphata
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Angoni apaphata

Zinazi a dpp mumaziyamba dala. You mean library ya University of Malawi or polytechnic has no elevetors up to now? Kuti mukaike ku umodzi mudzadikiranso demo? Koma stadium ya bata ndi wanderers. This is the 21st century. . Njaidi anagudubuzika nayo school kalekale. Sitikuyenera kumamvanso zimenezi.

mpilu
Guest
mpilu

i wonder this issue panopa. mbuyomu takhala ndi ma disabled ministers for this and kodi anakangolemerako instead of making their and all disabled to be included? sociol political economics says it lots. why making it big now ? kungoti ndife ma savage a ma degree cifukwa timaona ngati kulumala kaya olumala sakuyenera kukhala nazo zoziyenerera than osalumala. sanafunetu/kupempha kuti abadwe conco. stupid disabled ministers who were given this chance to to take their fellows to a higher level. meaning awarenes of their needs etc. wheelchairs amapatsidwa a maina okha mwambo wake presdent or madam kukapeleka, malo ambili sagwilizana ndi maendedwe… Read more »

Beyond100days
Guest
Beyond100days

So you are going to demonstrate break windows fighting for rights of disabled? I think there is a better way; not sure whether Ministry of gender still looks at social aspects or there is a ministry of disability, in my opinion these are institutions you need to engage not demonstrating. Demonstrations only shows how weak you are and want to force authorities to act. In many cases demonstrations in Makawi are hijacked by street vendors who go on rampage knowing they have nothing to lose but gain. Reconsider your useless decision you students.

Ndede
Guest
Ndede

As you are planning for your demonstration, you should also have in mind that you have not completed your education yet. In all fairness you will need your school to shape your future. Let me also remind you what happened during “academic freedom”. You stayed the whole year at home and in the end students were big time losers. Am just afraid for you students. I hope you will demonstrate in anticipation of positive response.

Mwinithako
Guest
Mwinithako

APA DPP YAVUNDA TSOPANO KKK.MADOLO AWA SIWOCHEZA NAWO ,ENA AJA TIZICHEZA NAWO KOMA AWA OKHA EEEIIISHHHH KUUYAMBA MOTO KKKK.OLO INE SINDINGA IKIRE KUMBUYO DPP LEADERSHIP YAPA KKKK

Whiteboard Marker
Guest

Ok.

MATILDA LOMBOLA
Guest

PETER MUTHALIKA ( BASOP !!)

Nzika
Guest
Nzika

Go, Go My Brothers &sisters! It’s time to take action if your concerns & rights are not addressed. How can they claim to be providing Inclusive Eduation & creating an inclusive society when actually they are excluding us! This is really sad and a shame with the whole Ministry of Persons with Disabilities in place!

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