The Inclusive Friends Association (IFA) among a coalition of Organizations of Persons with Disabilities (OPDs) had on Tuesday, August 8, 2023 faulted the ministerial nominations of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu for excluding persons with disabilities among the 45 nominees approved by the Senate on Monday.
Addressing the press, the PWD community stated that the blatant omission of PWDs in the ministerial appointments is contrary to the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act and is against all tenets of inclusive governance as it ignored the role of PWDs in sustainable development.
“The recent ministerial list proposed by President Bola Tinubu has unfortunately overlooked the integral role that the PWDs can and should play in Nigeria’s governance.” They further stated that
“The current lack of representation in the Federal Executive Council marks a missed opportunity to advance equality and justice for persons with disabilities in Nigeria.”
Colling on the President to rectify this mission to ensure inclusive governance, the PWD leaders recommended an “Immediate appointment of persons with disabilities into Ministerial positions at the National level and Commissioner positions at state levels, and enforcement of Section 29 of the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act, 2018 which provides to the effect that a minimum of five percent appointment quota for persons with disabilities at all levels of government, including states.
They further called for a constructive and inclusive dialogue between the Presidency and the PWD community to discuss the concerns and aspirations of persons with disabilities. And inclusion of persons with disabilities in decision-making processes concerning policies that directly or indirectly affect them e.g., the palliative committee on subsidy removal.”
The coalition includes: The All-rights Foundation Africa; Disability Rights Advocacy Center; Center for Ability, Rehabilitation, and Empowerment; Freky Andrew-Essien Care Foundation; The Qualitative Magazine; the Albinism Association of Nigeria; Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities; National Association of Persons with Physical Disabilities; Cedarseed Foundation; Network of Women with Disabilities; and Alliance for Inclusion