Access Nigeria Campaign Empowers PWDs to Build Strategic Partnerships
Ondo State governor, Olwarotimi Akeredolu on July 17, confirmed five Persons with Disabilities as board members of Ondo state agency for Persons with Disabilities’ welfare.
Mr Wale Akintade who is one of the a recently appointed board member in a letter stated, “Access Nigeria has been yielding positive results in our state. It has launched us in Nigeria’s democratic space.
The campaign has opened our eyes to work together and since then, we have learnt to demand for more from the government”.
To address the problems of inaccessibility in polling units, the Access Nigeria Campaign in 2016, trained 27 PWDs to carry out a polling unit accessibility audit in Ondo state. The goal of the campaign is to
increase the political participation of PWDs in electoral processes.
IFA executive director said establishing the agency and appointment of PWDs is commendable success. “it is great to see our effort yielding great result” Jerry said. “We want to thank our partners the NDI, USAID, UKAID and INEC for making this possible”.
According to Akintade, “We are excited that that for the first time, we have been invited by the state government for economic planning meetings and Ondo state has been chosen as a world bank group partner for a disability inclusive project to be implemented by year 2020”. Still, there is room for improvement. Akintade said true democracy in when everyone in a society is given the opportunity to freely participate and benefit from its dividends.
“Access Nigeria should explore ways for wider participation of PWDs in all segments of electoral cycle and governance”, he said.
For PWDs in Ondo state, Access Nigeria campaign has made all the difference and restored hope of getting to participate fully in Nigeria’s electoral processes.