A young man with a visual disability has suffered from discrimination as a camera fails to capture him during a SIM registration procedure at an Airtel store.
Benteke Chisom Orogwu of Owerri, Imo State capital of Nigeria, had gone to an Aitel outlet to register his phone number and link his NIN. After waiting in queue for several hours, it was his turn. Much to his dismay, the attending service provider told him it was impossible to capture him due to his monophthalmic disability.
A monophthalmic person has one eye fully open and functioning while the other is closed and dysfunctional.
Mr. Orogwu had on Saturday, 23 July 2022, gone to Airtel Office to link his line with his NIN. After waiting for almost two hours to get his turn, the customer service provider told him that the Camera could not capture his face because it is an eye program, where one must blink both eyes before it takes one’s picture.
As a person with visibly special needs, Chisom claimed he did try to talk to some of the other workers in the office about his special needs so they could give him special consideration, but all his explanations fell on deaf ears. “I had to leave the office with sadness in my heart,” said Chisom
“I have never felt sad about my condition like today.” He expressed.
Individuals in the disability community and stakeholders now wonder why organizations, including service providers, would program cameras without considering persons with disabilities like Mr. Chisom.
The Discrimination against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act 2018, also known as National Disability Act was signed by President Mohammadu Buhari on the 17th of January 2019. Per the Act, it is a crime against the state to discriminate against any person with a disability in Nigeria which is key to rehabilitating and reintegrating persons with disabilities.