Some Non Governmental Organisations (NGOs) have jointly called on Governor Adegboyega Oyetola of Osun State, to as a matter of urgency assent the Disability Law of the state to address the suffering of persons living with disabilities in the state.
The group lamented the seeming neglect of persons with disabilities at a press briefing in Osogbo, insisting that they are also part of the society, and should be protected because of their status.
The NGOs: Society For Life Changers And Good Parental Care: (SoLife), Festus Fajemilo Foundation: (FFF), and Community Advancement Initiative for Self Reliance: CAI4SR) in collaboration with Joint Association of Persons with Disability JONAPWD who advocated the domestication of the law.
Osun Chairman of the Joint Association of Persons with Disability, Mr Oluwafemi Stephens in his opening remarks, appreciated the frontline NGOs for their support.
He said it is time for Osun to make history and sign the Disability Law into existence as the whole world is watching.
According to the former Osun JONAPWD Chairman, Mr Kehinde Onitiju, and the JONAPWD female coordinator, Mrs Funmilayo Abdullahi ” unemployment, stigmatization, discrimination by members of the public, lack of access to basic facilities among others as challenges of persons with disabilities tracing the history of the Disability bill as far back as 2002.
The Executive Director, Festus Fajemilo Foundation FFF, Mr Afolabi Fajemilo stressed the need to domesticate the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act, not as a mere action or obligation, but to show commitment towards promoting the rights of Persons with Disability (PWDs) in the state.
The Executive Director of Community Advancement Initiative for Self Reliance CAI4SR, Mrs Eni Ayeni said “majority of the PWDs are unemployed, while those who are self employed lack financial capability and some of them find it difficult to access public facilities such as hospitals, banks, shopping mall, and those in school lack access to equipment that aide learning”.
The Chairman, Society For Life Changers And Good Parental Care SoLife, Ambassador Aremu Stephen Akinyele said Osun government must write their name in gold by assenting the Disability Act into law, just as the federal government have done at its level.
The SoLife Chairman who was represented by the Program Director, Mrs Adeola Falana admonished the media to ensure that their office is accessible to PWD and also makes use of their portfolio to address cases of violence.
SoLife maintained that the Disability bill when passed into law will improve the social inclusion of Perdons With Disability, give them access to Support services and also improve the right of PWDs.
The persons with Disability human rights organizations commended Osun government for the efforts made so far on the said bill, they used the medium to also appeal that the Governor of Osun State, see to the passing and effective use of the Disability bill in the state.
The groups also appealed to the government that the clean copy of the bill with the State Ministry of Justice through the Ministry of Youths, Sports and Special Needs, be transmitted, assented, presented to the assembly for speedy passage into law.
The group added that the Ministry of Justice in consultation with organizations of persons with disability in the state set up implementation framework to facilitate the implementation of the law.
The groups averred at the Press Conference that having the Disability Law in Osun will address multi-dimensional discrimination encountered by PWDs, improve rights, privileges and access of PWDs to services, and provide a clear and comprehensive legal protection and security for the PWDs in the state among others.