251 PWDs, 64 older persons register for national ID cards in Lira

PWDs between 18 to 35 years old positively turned up for the exercise and most of them were female.

By Acipa Doreen


Lira – March 5, 2022: The National Identification Registration Authority (NIRA) conducted a nationwide registration of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) for them to get the national identity cards (IDs).


Lira, for example, had designated venues (sub-counties and one city division) where all PWDs and older persons without national IDs were registered.


The registration was described by the PWDs leaders as an “open opportunity” in order for them to benefit from SAGE, Emyooga, PDM, among others. 


The exercise commenced on February 14 and ended on February 28.


“We met our target,” Richard Okello Aballa, assistant registration officer of the NIRA office told TND News.


53 PWDs were registered in Bar sub-county, 47 in Amac, 60 in Aromo, 45 in Ogur and 46 in Lira City East Division.


10 older persons were registered in Bar, 25 in Amac, 11 in Aromo, 12 in Ogur and 6 in Lira City East Division, Okello Aballa told this digital publication.


He said PWDs between 18 to 35 years old positively turned up for the exercise and most of them were female.


“We met our target because we expected to register like two older persons at Central Division but we got six,” Okello Aballa added.


“We would have registered many PWDs and older persons if not because of communication challenges with the PWDs, lack of electricity in other sub-counties like Amac,” he noted. 


It is very hard to get the fingerprint of an older person compared to youth, he added.


The exercise time frame was very short for the mobilization, according to the officer.


The NIRA officer also told us that most of the older people are having national IDs but many were going to extend their ages to benefit from SAGE. 


“You find an older person who is 60 years old coming and want us to extend his age to 70 and above. Which is what we don’t do and changing any details in the National ID has a process.”


He said there is a continuous ID registration at the NIRA office daily and urged the population to continue going for the services. 


The chairperson National Union of Disabled Persons of Uganda (NUDIPU) of Lira City, Mathew Omara said this did not meet their target at all.


Omara, who is also the male councillor representing PWDs in Lira City Council, however, appreciated the 251 members who registered.


He blamed the low turn-up on transport challenges for persons with physical disabilities and late information about the exercise.


The public should let us know of any PWD who do not have a national ID so that we can come in to help.


Jolly Joe Odongo, a male councillor representing the older person in Lira district council said each sub-county in Lira district has more than 300 older persons.


His expectation, he said was at worst 200 persons for the entire district but not only 64.


Odongo complained that the information reached “so late” and he believed it was the reason behind low turn up.


The female councillor representing the older persons at the district council of Lira is Imat Sylvia Otim. She said that 64 is a very small number for the entire district.


She continued that they should have been trusted with the privilege to identify and file the list of older persons without the national IDs before the exercise other than carrying the activity within a very short time without enough mobilization.


“There are so many older persons from 80 years and above who do not even have caretakers to help them with the registration and such people are missing a lot of benefits from the government because they do not have national IDs to make it worst,” she said.


PWDs countrywide were scheduled for registration to get the national ID cards. This special arrangement was organized by the Ministry of Gender, Labor and Social Development and supported by NIRA.

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