Thursday, 29 July 2010

GOVERNMENT PRODED TO SCALE UP EYE CARE BUDGET

Sight Savers Zambia Country Director - Musanje
Sight Savers Zambia has asked Government to increase budgetary allocation to eye care, education and community based rehabilitation programmes in the 2011 National Budget.

Sight Savers Country Director Joseph Musanje said these sub sectors have for a long time been neglected in budget allocation hence the need for equal attention by Government when allocating resources.

Mr Musanje urged the Ministry of Finance and National Planning and line Ministries to follow the issues and demands from sub sectors.

Speaking at the Sight Savers Advocates Stakeholders Meeting at Blue Crest in Lusaka, Mr. Musanje said there was need for an overall budget allocation to the Ministry of Health to be increased to 15 per cent of the national budget in line with the signed international agreements such as the Abuja Declaration signed in Nigeria.

He said the budget on eye health should be increased to K 2.1 billion in the 2011 Ministry of Health budget adding that this increase signified a 20 percent increase from the 2009 budget.

Mr Musanje said this should go towards the formulation of an eye care policy that would carry an eye care personnel structure.

Meanwhile, Sight Savers Zambia has praised Government for ratifying the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

Mr Musanje said the challenge was now upon Government to domesticate the Convention adding that Civil Society and Disability Groups have formed an independent monitoring steering committee to ensure monitoring of the domestication.

He also called on Government through the National Constitution Conference to study the Convention and ensure that the right legislation and disability is adopted in the proposed constitution.

ZANIS

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