Henry Ebose, Chairman of Joint National Association of Persons With Disability, (JONAPWD), Edo state chapter, has told the Federal Government not to see persons with disabilities as beggers or helpless victims begging to be cured.
Ebose, who made the appeal at a rally to mark this year’s international day of persons with disabilities, with the theme, “Empowering Persons With Disabilities and Ensuring Inclusion and Equality (The Place of a Disability Law in Edo State), said their disability was not a deficit.
He said: “The Nigerian government need to stop seeing disability as a deficit, and Persons With Disabilities as helpless victim of impairment or as with physical problems that need to be cured.
“Persons With Disabilities just like every other Nigerians are honest and hardworking people with claims and need to participate in all spheres of society on equal basis.”
According to Ebose, over the years, there have been concerted efforts to include persons with disabilities into the national development schemes but all to no avail largely due to the absence of a disability law.
He noted that article 4 of the United Nations Convention on the rights of Persons With Disabilities obligates member states, such as Nigeria, to ensure and promote the full realization of all human rights and fundamental freedom for all Persons With Disabilities without discrimination of any kind on the basis of disability and thus the country is enjoined to adopt legislative and administrative measures for the implementation of the rights recognized in the present convention.
Ebose hinted that the successful achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which address essential development domains such as education, employment, social protection, resilience to and mitigation of disaster and non discrimination by Nigerians is dependent on the full inclusion of Persons With Disabilities in the development agenda.
He however said the enacting of the disability law would boost human capital development by encouraging indigenous and foreign participation of Persons With disabilities in economic and political development of the country.