As the world commemorates the International Day of Persons with Disabilities in line with the United Nations’ General Assembly Resolution 47/3 in 1992, Project Enable Africa has called attention to the need for all stakeholders to unite towards the implementation of the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act, 2019. This was the message of the eighth annual disability inclusion dialogue held in Abuja on Friday, December 1, 2023.

As we commemorate the International Day of Persons with Disabilities today December 3, we recognise and celebrate thirteen exceptional individuals, among others, who fought, persevered, and ensured that Nigeria now has a legal framework to protect the rights of persons with disabilities. They are the heroes of disability inclusion in Nigeria.

The awardees of the disability inclusion and leadership awards are:

  1. Late Barrister Basheru Danlami, Former Executive Director, Anglo Nigeria Welfare Association of the Blind
  2. Chief Cosmas I.P. Okoli; Founder, MAARDEC
  3. Mr. David Okon; Former President, Nigerian Association of the Blind
  4. Mrs Judith Ekaete Umoh; Former National President of JONAPWD
  5. Mr. Olusola Adeyefa
  6. Mrs Rose Mordi; President, NAtional Down Syndrome Foundation
  7. Mr. James Ekpelle; Executive Director, The Albino Foundation
  8. Senator Bukola Saraki; Senate President of the 8th Senate
  9. Senator Jumoke Olabode; Member of the 8th Senate
  10. Hon Mohammed Abba Issa, SSA to the President on Disability Matters
  11. Barrister Daniel Onwe, Former President of Lawyers with Disabilities
  12. Mr. David Anyaele, Executive Director, Center for Citizens with Disabilities
  13. Mr. James Lalu, Executive Secretary, National Commission for Persons with Disabilities

The award ceremony was attended by the House Committee Chair on Disability Matters, Bashiru Dawodu, the House Committee Chair of Women Affairs and Social Development, Hon Kafilat Ogbara, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Disability Matters, Hon Mohammed Abba Issa.

The event featured the screening of a documentary titled, Once Upon a Disability Movement, a chronicle of the challenges and advocacy struggles of persons with disabilities for the Nigeria Disability Act. This was followed by a disability inclusion dialogue. As the moratorium period for the Nigeria Disability Act ends in January 2024, we call all stakeholders, from the public, private, and civil society organsiations, as well as individuals in the society to do their parts in accelerating the implementation of the provisions of the act so that we can truly have a disability inclusive society for ensure the prosperity of everyone. The event was supported by the British Council.

Project Enable Africa

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