Jakarta (13.05.2024) – University Al-Azhar Indonesia (UAI) and the National Commission on Disability (KND) signed a cooperation agreement for the establishment of a Disability Service Unit which took place in the UAI Rector’s Room on Monday, 13 May 2024. The agreement continued the visit of KND representatives to UAI on Friday, 3 May 2024. The signing of the collaboration with KND represents UAI’s commitment to become an inclusive campus for people with disabilities. Not only delegates from KND, there were also present representatives from Edinburgh University to collaborate with UAI in education, research, and disability services.

The event was opened with a report from UAI Communication Science Lecturer, Mrs. Cut Meutia Karolina, S.I.Kom., M.I.Kom, about the collaboration between UAI and Edinburgh University. She reported that after three lecturers of Communication Science Study Program UAI visited Edinburgh University, UAI learned many things about the implementation of inclusive and disability-friendly universities.

This collaboration project between UAI, KND, and Edinburgh University to build an inclusive campus environment also supported by the Dean of the Faculty of Social and Political Sciences of UAI, Dr. Heri Herdiawanto, S.Pd., M.Si., through his speech. Dr. Heri stated that every student has the same rights in accessing an appropriate education, including people with disabilities.

The event continued with remarks from the Rector of Al-Azhar University Indonesia, Prof. Dr. Ir. Asep Saefuddin, M.Sc. He said that UAI and the National Commission on Disability (KND) can build the collaboration to realise disability-friendly and inclusive facilities. ‘We must help them, not reject them!’, said the Rector to the audience. In addition, the importance of cooperation between UAI and Edinburgh University in applying inclusive principles, especially in services for disabilities.

Mr. Jonna Aman Damanik, Commissioner of the National Commission on Disability (KND), delivered a speech that KND considers the signing of cooperation with universities is a strategic steps. In fact, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics (BPS), only 2.87 per cent of people with disabilities can receive higher education. ‘Education is a window of independence, a window of capacity, and a window of success’. UAI has very high consent in implementing inclusive and disability-friendly universities, and hopes that UAI can help a lot in efforts to fulfil the rights of people with disabilities.