The Northern Nigeria Disability Forum (NNDF) has called on President Bola Tinubu to implement the five per cent affirmative action for Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) to give them a sense of belonging.
Yarima Suleiman-Ibrahim, chairman of the group, made the call while addressing newsmen on Monday in Lafia, Nasarawa State, immediately after their North-Central congress.
The chairman urged Mr Tinubu to demonstrate his willingness by appointing a good number of PWDs into his cabinet as heads of government ministries, department and agencies (MDAs).
Mr Suleiman-Ibrahim, also appealed to the federal government to consider qualified persons with disabilities for employment in the civil service to make their lives worthwhile.
“Most of our members are educated and are politicians but are hardly either employed or appointed into public offices because of their disabilities.
“We cannot compete with the able-bodied in terms of seeking employment and appointment given our condition, hence the need for special consideration,” he added.
The group also appealed to governors of the 19 Northern States to equally implement the five per cent affirmative action for their members.
Mr Suleiman-Ibrahim expressed confidence that if fully implemented by the federal and states government, affirmative action would go a long way in addressing street begging and poverty among them.
He appealed to the federal government to design a skills acquisition programme for PWDs as a way of empowering them to contribute meaningfully to society.
“Government should also support disabled persons who are not educated with grants to go into businesses and trades to be able to cater for themselves and their families,” he appealed.
He assured all tiers of government of their continued support and commitment to remain law-abiding citizens.