By Diana Omueza
The National Joint Association of Persons with Disability in Nigeria says it is working to reconcile the warring factions in the disabled community.
Mr Yusuf Iyodo, President of the association said this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Abuja.
Iyodo said a peace pack would soon be signed by the two warring fractions in Abuja.
“The two factions both representing Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) in the country, will soon begin to speak with one language through one voice.
“A communique on resolution of peace will be signed to end the internal crisis in the community for the benefit of all and not just a particular section,” he said.
Iyodo said the effort is aimed at ensuring unity within the disabled community in the country.
“The Discrimination Against Persons with Disability Prohibition Act can only be beneficial to every person living with disability in the country if we are united,’’ he said.
Iyodo noted that it was the collective efforts of various disability groups under the umbrella of the Coalition of Disability Organisations (CODO) that led to the successful passage and assent of the President to the Disability Act.
He expressed optimism that once peace is restored in the disabled community, more successes would be recorded in matters that affect PWDs, especially in the implementation of the act.
Mr David Anayaele, convener of Center for Citizens with Disability (CCD) called on all disabled groups, actors and stakeholders not to relent in the struggle until the disability act is fully implemented.
He posited that the passage of the act was one gotten through a process of persistent struggle that lasted for over 20 years and as such, effective implementation is key to justifying the struggle.
“Many of us were inconvenienced in the struggle to get the bill assented to through participation in the campaigns, protest, prayers, etc.
“Now that the act has come into fruition, we believe with the same support and even more collaborations, we will successfully implement the act,’’ he said.
Mrs Irene Patrick-Ubong, the Executive Director of Disability Rights Advocacy Center (DRAC), expressed optimism that the act would be successfully implemented at all levels of government if the disability community was unified.
“I believe the act will be implemented not only at the federal level, but also at the state and local governments level if the disability community is united,’’ she said. (NAN)