By Nur Aina Fathihah
PAGOH, 5 December 2020: A webinar on “Helping Orang Kita Week” (HOKi) conducted recently by Welfare and Residential Bureau of Mahallah Zaid bin Harithah, IIUM Pagoh, had called on community in various sectors in Malaysia to appreciate persons with disability.
Speaking on the topic “Disabled People: I am Uniquely Abled”, President of Damai Disabled Person Association Malaysia, Mr. Murugeswaran shared his thought on the discrimination and unfair treatment persons with disability faced with.
He called on normal people including students and authorities as a whole to treat disabled persons well so that they can live freely and independently.
This programme was organised in conjunction with the International Day of Disabled Person annually celebrated on 3 December with the objective to create awareness among people, especially students, to treat disabled persons with rahmah.
According to Mr. Murugeswaran, disabled people need to realise that they have the right to have access to education, job opportunities and others because Malaysia had signed a convention that gives the right for them to change the concept from charity-based to right-based.
Murugeswaran pointed out that he himself as a disabled person had faced discrimination and unfair treatment in various situations. He said one of his friends made him realised that success was meant for him too despite his disability.
“Sometimes I have to give my ATM card and pin number to my friend to withdraw money for me because the location of the ATM machine was not friendly to people like us,” Murugeswaran said.
“Although it is wrong according to Bank Negara ruling, I have no choice,” he added.
This kind of discrimination also occurs in sacred places, where Murugeswaran said, “In a temple, there is a signboard saying that a wheelchair is equivalent to a sleeper.”
On these, Murugeswaran shared some beneficial ways for students to treat disabled person with love.
For youngsters, understanding disabled persons is a form of help to them. He said that visiting disabled persons will help the students as young generation to somehow understand the world of the disabled.
By asking before giving help to disabled persons instead of directly helping them is also another crucial point to be taken, Murugeswaran said.
Murugeswaran concluded with a reminder to befriend the disabled people and to treat them like normal people.
The two-hour webinar held live on Facebook on 3 December was moderated by Hanif Naim, the president of MRC 20/21. The session was recorded and could be retrieved at Facebook @Mahallah Zain bin Harithah.
For further inquiries, readers are advised to refer to their Facebook @Mahallah Zain bin Harithah.***