DIF-SL backs government’s crackdown on Okada riders
The founder and Chief Executive Officer of Disabled International Foundation Sierra Leone/UK, Princess Imambay Kadie Kamara, has lauded Government’s effort to ban commercial motorbikes (Okada) from plying the Central Business District (CBD) of the capital, Freetown.
Speaking from her London office on 142 Trunflrys Road in an exclusive telephone interview, the CEO asserted that the use of motorbikes for commercial purposes has considerably increased the number of disabilities in the country.
Princess however conceded that many unemployed Sierra Leonean youths have taken to commercial motorbike riding to cushion the rate of unemployment.
She therefore warned that commercial motorbike riders should abide by the dictates of the law enforcement agencies such as refraining from plying the CBD and concentrating on the outskirts of the capital and its environs to prevent further disabilities and traffic congestion.
The CEO expressed dismay over the appalling living conditions of the disabled in Sierra Leone who have no access to basic amenities, adding that an increase in the number of disabilities in the country would be an eye-sore to the international community and donor partners.
She maintained that any decision by Government to mitigate motorbike accidents that may result to permanent or temporal disability is a step in the right direction.
The CEO also called on the Ministry of Health and Sanitation, the National Commission for Persons with Disability and the Sierra Leone Union on Disability Issues to monitor all hospitals, peripheral health units (PHUs) in the country as disabled children, pregnant and lactating mothers continue to suffer discrimination against benefiting from so-called Free Healthcare Initiative that was introduced in the country by President Ernest Bai Koroma on 27th April, 2010.
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