Empowering people with disabilities was integral to the EPLF’s principle of self-reliance during the struggle for independence. Drawing lessons from such experiences, different orthopedic limbs manufacturing plants have been setup in the post independence period so as to enable citizens with such disabilities earn their living at ease.
Imagining the dire consequences, many families would have faced in their day to day lives due the disabilities, the establishment of these factories have been very imperative in relatively solving the socio-economic hurdles of many families.
A number of people who were despaired with the catastrophe that has befallen them have not only become optimistic in life but have been constructively influencing others to follow their footsteps and ward off inclinations to any sort of independency.
Nationals who lost their hands or legs because of illnesses, natural catastrophes, war or with inborn deformities have been main customers of the orthopedic factories. The orthopeidc limbs have freely been offered or sold at a nominal price to people with such problems.
Mebrahtu Tekle, a technician in Adi-Guadad Orthopedic Limbs Manufacturing Factory, stated that many people with disabilities who used to put themselves in anguish, have been relived of their stress and most insignificantly turned out to be productive citizens with the successful fitting of the orthopedic limbs.
The provision of orthopedic limbs has been substantially improving the living standards of the disabled nationals. It is also quite important to note that some of the employees of the orthopedic limbs factories are people with disabilities who have not only surmounted any sort of challenge in life, but also become role models to people with such difficulties.
Mr. Habtom Haile- a veteran fighter, who lost his leg in 1979, is quite appreciative of the services that he got in Adi-Guadad orthopedic factory and particularly the precaution they take to make sure that the limbs comfortably fit with each case.
People who gained access from such Government subsided factories have been running small-scale business, many have been earning their living as farmers and industries employees. They have been conducting their day-to-day activities being self-sufficient in driving cars, climbing upstairs, in lifting goods and walking at ease among others. Mr. Habtom explains that the opportunities crated have been correcting pessimistic tendencies that would have hindered people with disabilities from leading a normal life.
The Orthopedic factories that have been functioning under the Ministry of Labor and Human Welfare have been engaged in ensuring that any disabled person is gaining access to such services of social security.
Adi-Guadad factory that have been confined in manufacturing orthopedic limbs has also started to produce wheelchairs and crunches. However, for further impressive accomplishments the factory is looking forward to strengthen its human power development relying on the guiding principle of Ministry of Labor and Human Welfare. So far, the necessary machines have been introduced and trainers have been assigned as part of human power development. There have also been plans to train professionals in collaboration with Sawa Vocational Training Center.
This factory is making endeavors to be competitive and meet such rare referral cases from the Sudan. Orthopedic factories in Adi-Guadad, Keren and Assab have been making due contribution in alleviating difficulties of the people with disabilities. Mr. Tsegay Samuel, Director of Adi-Guadad Orthepodic Limbs Factory said “We are also planning to give mobile services to reach the customers in their respective locality.”