By Diana Omueza
#TrackNigeria – The Centre for Citizens with Disability (CCD) has decried the absence of Information, Education and Communication (IEC) materials for the deaf and hearing impaired persons for
the Presidential and National Assembly elections on Saturday.
These materials are to assist the deaf or persons with hearing impairment in understanding the voting process.
Mr David Anyaele, the CCD Executive Director, said in a statement that the group was actively involved in the observation of the elections.
Anyaele said that the group had received reports from across the six geo-political zones of the country on the issue.
“Vital materials were missing at the polling units, which we believe have complicated access for the deaf or hearing impaired voters understanding of the voting process.
“We received the reports from our field observers deployed across the six geo-political zones of Nigeria.
“Our observers noted that most of the facilities and infrastructures used for the elections were not accessible to Persons with Disabilities (PWDs), which is a hindrance to access to Polling Units.”
He, however, commended the INEC for including PWDs in the election and for giving them priority voting.
“Recognising that today is one month that the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act came into force, we are pleased to observe that most of the polling units visited, PWDs were given priority voting.
“This is in compliance with the provisions of the Discrimination Against Persons With Disabilities (Prohibition) Act 2019.
“We are impressed to observe that marginalised populations from the aged, nursing mothers and pregnant women were given priority voting.”
Anyaele appealed to INEC to provide vital materials in the March 9 state elections.(NAN)