Group want states’ govts to adopt, domesticate disability law

The Association of Lawyers with Disability in Nigeria (ALDIN), has called on the Federal Government mandate state governments across the country adopt and domesticate the National Disability Act.News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities Act 2018 was passed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari in January 2020.

The Act seeks provide for the full integration of Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) into the society and prohibits against any form of discrimination against PWDs by any person or persons, organisation, and .It also proscribes the establishment of the National Commission for People with Disabilities (NCPWDs) and vest in the commission the responsibilities for PWDs education, health care, social-economic, and civil rights; and for related matters.Mr Daniel Onwe, the President of the Association made the appeal in a statement on Wednesday in Abuja.Onwe said that the adoption and domestication of the disability law across the country was pertinent the lives, livelihood, rights and dignity of PWDs.According him, the adoption and domestication of the national disability law at all levels of government will better enhance the lives of PWDs, create better awareness on the law and its provisions.“

As laudable as the provisions of the National Disability Act may be, implementing it directly at the level of the states may encounter some challenges, hence the need for respective states adopt and domesticate it, for seamless enforcement.“The implementation of the law at the national level and its adoption and domestication at state levels will also better project the country’s image as a citizenry and humanity centric government and country.“Also the implementation and adoption of the law is in line with international standards for the integration of PWDS in any society,” he said.Onwe said that globally, there was a  renaissance for the promotion of legal framework for the protection of persons with disabilities, which has since been the norm in other climes of the world.He note that the situation of persons with disabilities in Nigeria was however a dire one because all kinds of barriers exist exclude persons with disabilities from life and other mainstream.He noted that removing the barriers and creating an enabling environment for them thrive could not be left at the mercy of state actors, hence the need for federal government intervention by mandating states to adopt and domesticate the law.“

The right angle ensure protection of persons with disabilities is through the instrumentality of legislation, and the adoption and domestication of already existing legal frameworks across the country,” he said.Onwe noted that though it was only in 2020 that a federal was enacted for the protection of the rights of persons with disabilities in Nigeria, some states had already established legal framework for the protection of PWDs.

He said that states such as Lagos, Plateau, Rivers, Anambra, Kano amongst others in the country had gone ahead create disability protect and promote the rights of PWDs which was highly commendable.He lauded the Ten states in the country that were taking the lead in the promulgation of disability laws in their states and in the country and encouraged others yet domesticate the law follow suit on the humanitarian obligation.

He also lauded the federal government will power enact the national law and establish the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities (NCPWDs)The ALDIN president reiterated the commitment of the association not relent in ensuring that all states in the country puts a law in place to protect the rights and dignity of PWDs. (NAN)