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Body demands disability commissions in states, 5% job slots for disabled people

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Obi

A group, ActionAid Nigeria, has praised President Muhammadu Buhari for reconstituting the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities (NCPWD), calling on states to set up theirs. ActionAid also demanded at least five per cent of public appointments for disabled people.

Speaking at a press conference in Abuja, Country Director of the body, Ene Obi, said that with over 25 million Nigerians living with disabilities there was a need for a Disability Commission.

She said: “We applaud the Federal Government for ending years of exclusion of this valuable population through the establishment of a commission charged with ensuring the inclusion and welfare of persons with disabilities as enshrined in the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Law in Nigeria.”

Obi believes the NCPWD will ensure that disabled people have access to quality education and healthcare as well as other social and economic rights contained in the 1999 Constitution and the Law on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.

According to her, PWDs’ movement in urban areas are being restricted due to the plan and design of transport systems.

She said: “This insensitivity exposes them to violence on the streets, especially women with disabilities facing multiple burdens as they are exposed to the threat of gender-based violence while they go about their daily life.”

The body called for adequate buses, streetlights, recruitment of female transport workers, disability-friendly public toilets and infrastructure that caters to the mobility and protection of the disabled.

Obi said although government had shown that is committed to creating a PWD-friendly society, it still needs to investment in infrastructure and public services that account for the needs of PWDs.

The group urged all levels of government to take advantage of the additional revenue accruing following its war against tax fraud to provide disability- friendly public transport and other public services.

“We call on state governments to expedite action on domesticating the Disability Commission as any further delay will amount to great injustice, especially at a time when the world is battling COVID-19, one of the most lethal pandemics in the history of mankind,” Ob said.


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