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Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities introduced at NA

After over a decade of keeping it on hold, the National Assembly yesterday, unanimously decided to deliberate on the ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. Bhutan signed the convention in September 2010. The minister for Foreign Affairs and External Trade, Dr Tandi Dorji, introduced the Convention on The Rights of Persons Living with Disabilities to the National Assembly yesterday.

The minister said the convention is a human rights instrument with special emphasis on the rights of persons with disabilities.

“The main purpose of the convention is to promote and ensure full and equal enjoyment of all human rights by persons with disabilities. This includes accessibility, participation, equality, employment, education, training, social protection, and health,” said Dr Tandi Dorji.

According to the minister, Bhutan could not ratify the convention so far, as there were concerns regarding the considerable investments required in developing expertise and improving the current infrastructure as per the convention.

“In the past years, when we talked about adopting the convention, many members expressed concerns about budget constraints and other requirements like infrastructure. Although many countries have now adopted the convention, it is not necessary to implement it immediately. We can take time and work on the requirements. Moreover, when the ministry consulted the relevant agencies, they expressed full support.”

Several members of the House also expressed their support for the ratification of the convention.

Today, Bhutan is one of the twelve countries in the world that has not ratified the convention. 186 countries have ratified the convention

Tashi Dekar & Kinley Dem

Edited by Sherub Dorji