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Published On: Tue, Jun 10th, 2014

Delegate advocates ministerial appointments for physically challenged persons

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A National Conference delegate, Ms. Esther Andrew has urged the Federal Government to appoint physically challenged persons as ministers in the country.

Andrew, representing Persons Living with Disabilities, made the call while contributing to the report of the Standing Committee on Public Service in Abuja.

She expressed regrets that physically challenged persons were often discriminated against in all sectors in the country.

“We find out that in the nomination of ministers, persons living with disabilities were not included and we know of countries that have nominated persons with disabilities as ministers.

“Please give us a chance and you will be shocked at our performance because disability is not a sign of weakness,’’ she said.

Andrew said that physically challenged persons go through a lot of difficulties in accessing most offices in the country.

She further decried the humiliation and harassment faced whenever they visit agencies to seek job opportunities.

“There are no jobs for persons living with disabilities and this is disheartening, and even when we go to agencies to seek for jobs, we are rudely turned away.

“They tell you because you are living with visual impairment for instance, you cannot work. We want Nigerians to put us to test and see what we can do.

“If we cannot deliver, we will understand why you are chasing us away,’’ she said

A delegate representing North-West, Hajiya LarabaDattijo, stressed the need for special allowances for persons with disability considering the fact that they required extra care.

Dattijo called for disability desks that would be manned by physically challenged persons across the country and provision of disability-friendly staircases and toilets.

“I support that effort should be made by government at all levels to make offices disability-friendly, especially in the setting up of a disability desk in all offices and toilets among other things that will help them live comfortably.’’ (NAN)

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