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Annual General Meeting of the National Association of Deafblind in Uganda

Date: September 1, 2023

Venue: Sports View Hotel, Kampala, Uganda

The Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the National Association of Deafblind in Uganda (NADBU) took place yesterday at the prestigious Sports View Hotel-Kireka in Kampala. This highly anticipated event brought together a diverse and influential group of stakeholders, media including board members, representatives from organizations of persons with disabilities, partners, the representative from Permanent Secretary of Uganda, and the Honorable Minister of State for Disability Affairs. The meeting was a significant milestone for the association, as it offered an opportunity to reflect on past achievements, discuss challenges, and chart a path forward to improve the lives of the Deafblind community in Uganda.

The Sports View Hotel provided an accessible and welcoming venue, ensuring that all attendees, including those with disabilities, could actively participate in the AGM. This commitment to inclusivity mirrored the core values of the National Association of Deafblind in Uganda, which has long advocated for the rights and well-being of individuals living with Deafblindness.

One of the highlights of the AGM was the presence of esteemed guests, including the Representative from Permanent Secretary of Uganda and the Honorable Minister of State for Older Persons with Disability (Hon Gidudu Mafwabi).

Hon minister Gidudu Mafwabi delivering his speech at the AGM.

Their attendance showed the Government’s commitment to supporting and advancing the rights of persons with disabilities, especially those who are Deafblind.  Their speeches acknowledged the critical role of organizations like the National Association of Deafblind in Uganda and expressed the Government’s dedication in collaboration and policy development, Government support with the special grants to improve the lives of this marginalized group.

The Executive Director (Mr. Otim Tonny) of National Association of Deafblind in Uganda on left hand side of Minister mentioned in his speech that fewer numbers of people living with Deafblindness are excluded when it comes to receiving some of these services, arguing that they unable to access them due to the nature of their disability i.e. Deafblindness.

The AGM also saw the active participation of board members, who amended NADBU’s constitution and presented comprehensive reports detailing the Association’s accomplishments over past year by chairperson and treasurer. These reports showcased various initiatives aimed at empowering the Deafblind community through education, communications, vocational training, access to healthcare, and advocacy for their rights. The association’s transparency in sharing its progress and challenges demonstrated its commitment to accountability and the effective use of resources. The reports were presented by Chairperson Mr. Draecabo Isaac and treasurer Ms. Abukito Agnes.

In addition to the board members, representatives from organizations of persons with disabilities, media and partners i.e. Sense International Uganda, ADD International, NUDIPU among others were present to lend their support and offer insights on how to enhance the Association’s work. This collaborative spirit was a testament to the unity and strength within the disability community in Uganda.

Throughout the AGM, there were engaging discussions, brainstorming sessions, and the sharing of best practices. Attendees actively contributed ideas and strategies to address the unique challenges faced by the Deafblind population in Uganda, with a focus on improving access to education, communication, healthcare, employment opportunities, and social inclusion.

As the meeting concluded, there was a shared sense of optimism and renewed commitment to the cause. The AGM of the National Association of Deafblind in Uganda served as a platform for unity, knowledge exchange, and collaboration among key stakeholders. It marked another step forward in the ongoing journey to empower and uplift the lives of those living with Deafblindness in Uganda, reaffirming the principle that disability should never be a barrier to leading a fulfilling and meaningful life.

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