Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD) celebrate Governors Ikpeazu and Obaseki for assenting to Disability Bills, calls on the leadership of the Disability Community to build capacity and sensitise members on the provisions of the laws
The Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD) has commended Governor Okezie Ikpeazu for bringing to a closure, the demand by more than 400,000 people with disabilities in Abia State for a legal framework that would protect them from discrimination and other harmful practices by reason of their disability.
Noting that it received with great excitement, the good news of the signing into law of the Abia State Disability Bill; CCD’s Executive Director, David Obinna Anyaele, added that with Governor Ikpeazu’s assent to the law; he has engraved his name as the first Governor of the state to sign a law that promotes the welfare of Abians with disabilities.
“The signed Disability Law which is cited as the Abia State Commission for Persons with Disabilities Law 2022 has placed the State on the map of States that protects the rights of persons with disabilities.
The law would go a long way towards ensuring that government programs and activities do not exclude any citizen of the State by reason of disability. It is gratifying to record this good news from Abia State in favour of persons with disabilities as the reign of exclusion, stigma, isolation of people with disabilities by State and none State actions have come to an end,” the statement read.
The Centre equally commended Edo Governor, Godwin Obaseki for signing into law, a Bill for an Act to ensure full integration of Persons With Disabilities into the Society and to establish Edo State Commission for Persons With Disabilities and vest it with responsibility for their Education, Healthcare and the protection of their Social, Economic, Cultural, Civil And Political Rights, 2022.
According to the statement, the Disability Law for Edo State provides for the prohibition of discrimination, prohibition of harmful treatment/practices, prohibition of cruelty and inhuman treatment. It also makes provision for access to public buildings and infrastructures, accessibility aids for public buildings, accessibility aids for public transport, non-compliance to Building Code/Plan and reserved spaces.
It also includes the right to first consideration in situations of risks and humanitarian emergencies, freedom of movement, prohibition of segregation, right to free education, free healthcare etc.
“We must sincerely appreciate the wife of Abia State Governor, Mrs. Nkechi Ikpeazu PhD for standing on behalf of the disability community in the State throughout the struggle for the passage of this disability law. The push and follow up by the Clerk of the Abia State House of Assembly, Chief John-Pedro Irokansi to secure the assent of the Governor on the bill deserves commendation. The consistent push by the disability community in Abia State towards ensuring that the assent of the Governor did not slip off their hands is worthy of emulation.
We are extremely grateful to the Daughters of Charity of Saint Vincent the Paul, British Council-led Rule of Law and Anti-Corruption program for their support to the disability community in Edo State which culminated in the passage and assent of Governor Obaseki to the Disability Bill in Edo State,” the statement added.
Calling on the Clerks of the Abia and Edo State Houses of Assembly to speedily gazette the laws to accelerate the full implementations, it further stressed the need for the two States to put in place mechanisms for the full implementation of the laws.