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Izunaso: 25 Million Persons Live with Disabilities in Nigeria
Kuni Tyessi in Abuja
The senator representing Imo West and Orlu senatorial zone of Imo State, Senator Osita Izunaso, has revealed that over 25 million people live with different types of physical disabilities in Nigeria and as such, there is the need for inclusiveness of such persons in the nation’s constitution.
Izunaso who is also the Chairman, Board of Trustees of the Kpakpando Foundation revealedâ€Ž this in Abuja on the 12th anniversary of the Kpakpando Foundation for persons with disabilities and with the theme â€˜Disability, inclusive development, entrepreneurship and self employmentâ€™.
He said some state governors have seen the zeal and importance of such persons and have keyed into the vision of establishing a commission which will cater for their needs, adding that several of them are better and have excelled where those without disabilities have been unable to excel, thereby calling on other governors to key into the vision.
â€ŽHe said: “There has to be inclusiveness of persons living with disability in the Nigerian constitution because they contribute to the socio- economic and political growth of the country.
“Private sector should be encouraged to have persons living with disabilities as their employees as many of them have proven to be more qualified that many without physical challenges.
“The National Assembly has already passed a bill on persons with disabilities after recognising their contributions as members of the electorate who vote and can be voted for. We shall also engage INEC to make provision for them in the constitution which should stipulate that they can vote from their houses and so do not need to come out. Special cards and others can be made for them. They should also be made to vie for positions in politics and should not be made to pay for the buying of forms,”he added.
The foundation was established against the backdrop of the multifarious problems encountered by Nigerian citizens living with disabilities and the foundation has embarked on championing the cause of the growing needs of the teeming number of persons with disability across the nation.