Lagos State Chapter of the Joint National Association of Persons With Disabilities (JONAPWD), the umbrella body for all Persons with Disabilities and their various associations in Nigeria has congratulated Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on his re-election for a second term in office.
The group, in a statement signed by Dr. Adebukola Adebayo, Chairman, JONAPWD Lagos and made available to newsmen through its spokesperson, Adewale Adeyanju said Sanwo-Olu’s re-election will enable him continue the good work of delivering dividends of democracy to Lagosians.
“We use this opportunity to remind the Governor of his promises to the people especially to members of the disability community”, the statement read in part.
“Being a compassionate leader, it is expected that he (Sanwo-Olu) put in all effort to ameliorate the plight of Persons with Disabilities in the State.”
The group presented a charter of demands to the Governor on the key sectors listed below:
EDUCATION: To make education more inclusive and accessible to PWDs. The State Government should:
Review and strengthen the Inclusive Education Policy with a 5-year implementation plan that will receive annual cash-backed budget.Establish a distinct Directorate for Special and Inclusive Education under the Ministry of Education to provide the necessary professional and institutional support for delivering qualitative, functional and inclusive education to children and learners with disabilities at primary, secondary and tertiary levels.
Ensure that all 49 public inclusive primary and secondary schools in the State be equipped with needed Assistive Learning Aids with special teachers, care-givers and other relevant specialists employed.
Equip all 49 inclusive schools in the State with functional buses to support mobility for learners.
Provide some of the inclusive schools with boarding house facilities to ease learning for pupils.
Make provision for special allowances for special educators in order to motivate them.
HEALTH: The Government need to put in place a disability-inclusive Health Framework in line with the SPL. This should:
Detail modalities for implementing the “free health” provisions of the SPL for PWDs.
See to a reviewing of the Lagos State Health Insurance Program and other primary health care delivery services in order to mainstream specific health needs of the various disability types.
Establish Disability Support Desks/Units in all public health facilities and employ the services of sign language interpreters, social workers, therapists, etc
EMPLOYMENT, ECONOMIC EMPOWERMENT AND SOCIAL PROTECTION: The State Government should demonstrate real and sustained commitment to a holistic and systemic approach to the socio-economic empowerment of PWDs. This should be done through:
Developing guidelines for Disability-Inclusive employment and economic empowerment for PWDs.
Developing guidelines for delivery of disability-inclusive social protection.
Full and transparent implementation of the Disability Trust Fund as provided for in the SPL with full consultation and involvement of legitimate organizations of persons with disabilities in Lagos State.
Full compliance by all MDAs with the 1% quota reservation of employment slots for qualified PWDs during recruitment exercises in the State.
Review of social investment programs, social protection programs and other economic empowerment programs to specifically capture and provide for “disability costs”, and mainstream specific abilities, interests and needs of various disability types.
Setting aside specific quotas for PWDs in Government procurements, especially those which target small and medium scale businesses.
TRANSPORTATION: Mobility remains a major challenge for PWDs in a cosmopolitan state like Lagos. The State gov Government still needs to do more to make public transportation more accessible for PWDs by:
Laying guidelines on accessible transport services for PWDs and disseminating same to all of public transport service operators.
Making all public transportation infrastructure via rail, road and water accessible to PWDs.
Offering accessible bus and train services should be free of charge to PWDs.
Training Public transportation personnel to provide support to PWDs.