By Olasunkanmi Akoni
A Non Governmental Organisations, NGO, the Centre for Citizens with Disabilities, CCD, has called on Lagos State Governor, Mr. Bababjide Sanwo-Olu, to ensure immediate implementation of the State Special Peoples Law 2010 in the public sector which had remained dormant, 10 years after passage into law.
Recall that Lagos State Special Peoples Bill was signed into law by the then Governor Babatunde Fashola, SAN, which ended the agitation by residents with disabilities for legislation that expected to protect more than 2 million inhabitants in the state with different forms of disability against all forms of discrimination and harmful practices.
The Executive Director of CCD, David Anyaele, made the call on Monday, during a media conference on the activities lined up for the commemoration of the 10th Anniversary of the Special Peoples Law 2010 in the state, held at the headquarters of the center in Ikeja.
Anyaele, commended the Lagos State House of Assembly for speedy amendment of section 9(1), (4), 17(1) and 24(3) of the bill on the 30th May 2011 which gave the impetus for the signing of the bill.
“This singular legislative action ushered in a new dawn for the disability movement in Lagos State and Nigeria as a whole.
“The law contains provisions that would ensure people with disabilities in Lagos State are protected against discrimination and harmful treatment, cruelty and inhuman treatment, provision of the facility at a public building, protection at the situation of risk and humanitarian emergencies, provision for an adequate standard of living and social protection.
“Also, the law provided for the right of children with disabilities, right to health, education, work, and employment, right to drive, right to communication, right to communal life, right to participation in cultural life, recreation, leisure/sport and a dedicated Office for Disability Affairs to address complaints of harassment, discrimination, and harmful practices. among others.”
According to him, the CCD over the years had been monitoring compliance to the law established in June 2011, among agencies in the state, and a report by CCD in 2020 showed that ministries, departments, and agencies responsible for the implementation of the law, were not taking any pragmatic measures in carrying out the provisions of the law which is detrimental to the PLD.
He, therefore, called for the full implementation of the law in all agencies of the state, and by extension, the private sector, saying that the move would improve the lives of people with disabilities in every sense who had been discriminated against in schemes of things.
Speaking on the activities for the commemoration, Anyaele explained that the objectives of the weeklong event include: to review the journey so far in the implementation of the Lagos State Special Peoples Law, create awareness on the provisions of the Lagos State Special Peoples Law among state and non-institutions in the state, and set agenda for improved living conditions of persons with disabilities in Lagos State.
He acknowledged what he called worthy role played by some groups and personalities for their supports during the quest for the realisation of the law, which include: Adejide Adeyeye, Majority Leader Lagos State House of Assembly, Babatunde Ayeni, former Chairman, of the State House of Assembly Committee on Youth and Social Development, Lagos State Civil Society Organisations, friends from the media, staff of Lagos State House of Assembly, Association for the Comprehensive Empowerment of Nigerians with Disabilities, Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities, Lagos Civil Society Disability Policy Partnership, among others.
Some of the activities lined up include:Presentation at the International Workshop on Disability Rights Policy Advocacy and Compliance to Lagos State Disability Law (2011) by Public Institutions in Lagos State, Nigeria at the Alternative Explanations for Disability – Implications for Advocacy and Activism workshop organized by the Disability and Inclusion Africa Network Monday,
Civil Society Organizations, CSOs interactive session on the state of the implementation of the Law using the finding of research report on assessment of compliance to the provisions of Lagos State Special Peoples Law by Public Institutions
Public Presentation of Yoruba and Pidgin Language Versions of the Abridged versions of the Lagos State Special Peoples Law, among others.