Home Disability News ‘Atiku has plans for persons with disabilities’

‘Atiku has plans for persons with disabilities’

by Inclusive News Network

By John Alechenu

The Atiku-Okowa presidential campaign has expressed confidence that the Peoples Democratic Party, candidate, Atiku Abubakar, has better plans for People With Disabilities, PWDs,than any other candidate in the 2023 presidential contest.

The campaign also described as laughable claims by Executive Secretary of the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities, James Lalu, that Atiku Abubakar abandoned PWDs in their hour of need.

National Deputy Director, Atiku/Okowa PWDs campaign council, Dr. Chidi Olujie, said this in Abuja, on Sunday.

Dr. Chidi said, “Your response to PDP presidential candidate Atiku’s message passed on the inauguration day of the PDP Campaign Council for PWDs is somewhat laughable and, at the same time, disappointing.

“You claim Buhari has done a lot for PWDs and yes, he is our best friend, then unashamedly accuse His Excellency Atiku for the majority of states’ failure to sign the Disability Bill into Law, yet Atiku has never been president; please, does it make sense.

“May I also remind you that Nigeria ratified the United Nations Convention on the Rights of People with Disabilities (CRPD) in 2007 and its Optional Protocol in 2010, during which PDP was in power?

“Again states like Abia, Sokoto, Bauchi, Jigawa, Edo, and many others, are strong PDP states that have already passed the bill into law.

“If others have not, the onus falls on your government to make directives for such bills to be passed into law.

“The National government passed the Disability bill, and we should commend it for that, but what about implementation? Look at the current state of special schools for children with disabilities.

“What about the adoption of Sign Language as a national language? What about reviewing the Nigerian constitution for inclusive political participation of PWDs?

“Need I remind you that when the Plateau State Disability bill passed into law and implemented by creating a Disability Commission to which you, yourself, were a chairperson, it was PDP in total control.

“Both then Speaker of the House of Assembly, Simon Lalong, and the then governor, Sen. Joshua Chibi Dariye, were the ones that signed it, and they were in PDP.”

He further said, “The truth is that the government under APC has tried but has not done enough for PWDs. We need to adopt Sign Language and recognize it as one of the official languages recognized by our constitution.

“We need constitutional reforms to allow affirmative action to enable political inclusion and governance of PWDs, and this is precisely what Atiku will do for us as president of Nigeria.

“I would have said more because we have more in store for PWDs, but to avoid our ideas getting stolen to enrich self-seeking politicians.

“I will appeal to all sound-minded PWDs and their families to trust in PDP for the change we have always dreamt of. “

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