Sightsavers congratulates visually impaired Gambia activist on appointment as MP

April 2017
Ndey Secka with staff
Ndey Secka with staff from Sightsavers’ office in the Gambia.

Ndey Secka is a keen advocate for the rights of people with disabilities

Sightsavers has welcomed the appointment of Ndey Yassin Secka Sallah as a Member of Parliament by the Gambia’s newly elected President, Adama Barrow.

Mr Barrow was inaugurated in January following the departure of long-time President Yahya Jammeh who, following intervention by regional organisation the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), accepted his defeat in the elections held last December.

Following parliamentary elections earlier this month, President Barrow has used his power to nominate some members to the National Assembly to appoint Ms Secka to the new legislature.

Ndey Secka, who has visual impairments, is a keen advocate for the rights of people with disabilities and is a member of the Gambia Organisation for the Visually Impaired (GOVI).

She has a long association with Sightsavers, which helped to sponsor the World Blind Union Institutional Development Programme in which Ms Secka took part. Sightsavers also supported GOVI from 1997 to 2008 to help the organisation get off the ground, according to Sightsavers West Africa Regional Director Bakary Marong.

Sightsavers Global Advocacy Advisor Gertrude Oforiwa Fefoame says she is overjoyed at the news. “I have known Ndey since 1994 and we served together on the Women’s Committee of the Africa Union of the Blind. She has worked tirelessly as an advocate of the rights of people with disabilities in her own country and across the region, working for many years as the Chair of the Women’s branch of GOVI, and later as president of the organisation.”

Balla Musa Jouf, Sightsavers’ Senior Programme Manager in the Gambia, added: “We are delighted to hear that the Honourable Ndey Secka is one of the nominated members of the National Assembly. Her appointment is welcome news to the disability community and we look forward to working with her and the new government to support the inclusion of people with disabilities in the Gambia.”

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