December 3 is an international observance that has been promoted by the United Nations since 1992, aimed at promoting a deepened understanding of disability issues, and mobilizing support for the dignity, rights, and well-being of persons with disabilities around the world.  By celebrating this day, global stakeholders have always sought to increase awareness of the gains derived from the integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life.

The theme for this year’s observance is “Empowering persons with disabilities and ensuring inclusiveness and equality, and focuses on empowering persons with disabilities for the inclusive, equitable and sustainable development envisaged in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

Uganda ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities in 2008. Domestication of the Convention in Uganda has to some extent advanced the rights and well-being of persons with disabilities in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Vision 2040, the National Development Plans I & II, and other national development frameworks.

The commemoration of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities in Uganda is at Kiwoko Primary School in Nakaseke district. This has brought together representatives of UN agencies in Uganda, national and local policy makers, civil society organizations, academic institutes and organizations of persons with disabilities to discuss the way forward for inclusive, equitable and sustainable development.

This year, the Secretary-General of the United Nations is launching a first-ever flagship report on disability and development UN Flagship Report on Disability and Development | 2018 – Realizing the SDGs by, for and with persons with disabilities. The Report provides an evidence base for disability-inclusive policy-making, implementation and monitoring and evaluation of an inclusive, accessible and sustainable global development agenda.