By Becky John
An NGO, Centre for Citizens with Disabilities, on Friday urged candidates of all political parties to integrate issues affecting people with disabilities in their campaigns.The Executive Director of the organisation, Mr David Anyaele, who made the plea at a news briefing in Lagos, said that this would encourage them to participate in the elections.
He claimed that the political parties had not addressed the issues which had to do with people with disability, saying they had been silent on issues of concern to them. Anyaele said this had prevented lots of them with disability from active participation in the previous electoral processes.
“The reliance on charity-based approach to addressing issues of concern to people with disabilities’ participation in the 2015 general elections is worrisome.
“This approach had affected their participation in the voter registration.
“It is, therefore, weakening their desire to go for the collection of their PVCs as most of the centres are inaccessible to the physically challenged.
“What this means is that eligible Nigerians with physical disabilities may not go out to vote due to their neglect by the politicians,’’ he said.
On security challenges facing them, Anyaele urged the security agencies to give special consideration for eligible voters with disabilities and other vulnerable people to vote. He also appealed to them to make adequate security arrangement for such category of people to vote with minimal struggle at the polling units.