The bill for an act to ensure full integration of persons with disabilities into the society has passed through second reading in the Senate.
Sponsored by Senator Nurudeen Abatemi-Usman, Vice Chairman Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs, the bill equally seek to establish a National Commission for disabled people to be vested with the responsibilities for their education, healthcare and protection of their social, economic and civil rights.
According to a statement signed by Michael Jegede, the Senator’s media aide, Abatemi-Usman, in his presentation on the floor of the Senate, stressed that the bill will go a long way in ameliorating the sufferings of the over 22.5 million Nigerians that are disabled.
“The condition I present before you is that of disability. Disability as a condition has numerous social, political, economic and security implications, which are quite obvious to you. This bill will be a major milestone in the lives of people living with disabilities as it seeks to effectively check all forms of discrimination against them, while also putting in place measures that address their condition. As matter of fact, the bill will completely outlaw the discrimination of people on grounds of disability in the areas of employment, housing, transportation and similar other spheres” Abatemi-Usman said.
He continued: “You would, of course, agree that without the necessary legal framework/legislation the challenges that this set of people encounter would be, mildly put, difficult to overcome. This, in my opinion and indeed in the opinion of my colleagues, co-sponsors of this bill, no other effective means but this (legislation/legal framework) could check abuses and ensure the protection of their rights in our fledging democracy.”
In his remarks, Senate President, David Mark, pointed out that the Senate will do everything possible to ensure that the bill is signed into law after its final passage in the Red Chamber.