Times of Swaziland
6 August 2008
Deaf man’s remarkable challenge for Parly seat
By NHLANHLA MATHUNJWA
MBABANE – At 38 years, Makhosini Makhubu is bracing himself for arguably his biggest challenge yet.
Makhubu is deaf but does not let this put him down—he has joined in the race to Parliament.
The father of five was this weekend nominated at Mangwaneni.
Makhubu has been deaf since he was eight years old after he fell sick and now requires the aid of an interpreter. He, however, has partial speech because by the time he turned eight he could speak and hear.
If he happens to qualify during the Secondary Elections, it will be the first of its kind in the country as no one amongst the disabled people had ever made in to Parliament.
Currently, Makhubu has his own interpreter who normally interprets for him when ever people talk to him.
When asked if he was ready to be an MP, he said he was more than ready and had confidence that he would make it to Parliament after being nominated under the Mbabane West Constituency.
"I had no intention of taking part in the elections, however, some people came and asked me to join the race to Parliament. Since the people have the trust in me, I could not decline," he said.
He said it was time disabled people were given the opportunity to be in Parliament in order for the people to understand that they were also human beings.
"We need to change the mindsets of many. My main intention is see the disabled being treated just like other people and also see their lives improving," he said.
Makhubu, who is amongst the founders of the Swaziland National Association of the Deaf said he would also play a major role in promoting his constituency.
"All in all, I am more than ready to serve my constituency and I believe that after not getting such an opportunity, we as the deaf people will make it this time around," he said.
When asked as to what would happen in terms of the interpretations in Parliament if he happens to become an MP, he said this was a challenge for government as the country had a few interpreters.
"Since this will be the first of its kind, government would have to hire an interpreter so one could understand the Parliament procedures. I am ready to serve the people and I will definitely be the people’s voice," he said. Makhubu is married.