Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD), Enugu State chapter has felicitated with the state Governor, Dr Peter Mbah on his inauguration as the Governor of Enugu state, appealing to him to assist them by enacting a law that would give them sense of belonging in the society.
The group in a press release signed by it’s State Chairman, Comrade Onyebuchi Mba, and made available to newsmen on Saturday,June 3,2023 sought for
“a Bill for a law to provide for the full integration of persons with disabilities into the society, establish the Enugu State persons with disabilities Commission and vest in the Commission the responsibilities for their Education, health, social, economic and civil rights and other connected purposes otherwise refered to as Enugu State Discrimination Against Person’s with Disabilities”.
According to JONAPWD, Prohibition Bill of 2022 was on Tuesday , 4th April, 2023 passed into law by the State House of Assembly and was subsequently signed into Law by the immediate past Governor of the State, Rt. Hon.(Dr) Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi.
The group explained that the Prohibition Bill, “is a machinery towards inclusive society for all in governance with paradigm shift from charity to right base approach on disability matters. “
The Press release read in part:
“With profound humility we implore you our Dear Executive Governor to set up the Enugu State Disability Commission and constitute it’s board as provided by the law to ensure its kickoff as over 20 States across the federation have gone ahead in this process.
“We look up to you in our desperation for equity, fairness and respect for human dignity in promoting self-discovery and reliance other than self pity and perpetual liability as seen in disability community.
“Your Excellency, members of this special community have suffered series of untold neglects, discriminations and maltreatment hence call on you to expedite action towards promoting their rights and giving them a sense of belonging in your government, including creating a disability desk, and giving us at least 5% appointment into political positions under your administration as the law provided.
“This will serve as unprecedented and register you as a disability- friendly Governor with interest for their self development, especially in consideration to your (TOMORROW IS HERE SLOGAN) which gives hope to the hopeless.
“Our University graduates and other vulnerable folks are scattered all over the streets under the mercies of the unscrupulous individuals who merchandise with their predicaments, and good enough the disability legislation captures their interests and stipulates penalties for such surreptitious activities.
“May you be the much-anticipated messiah we have waited and prayed for over the years in Enugu State disability matters. May the Almighty keep, preserve and strengthens you as you pilot the affairs of our dear State,” the group prayed .
The Chairman explained that Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD) is an umbrella body consisting of all persons with disabilities. It was registered under the corporate affairs commission (CAC) in Nigeria in 1992.
According to him, the principal objectives of the Association are geared towards the general welfare of persons with disabilities socially, educationally, economically and otherwise.
“The platform serves as the voice of disability community across the federation.
It engaged the State and non State actors for disability rights inclusion in all societal policies and programs for equity and justice and ensure the protection of human dignity”, Mbah said.
Author: Maureen Ikpeama