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Foundation advocates inclusion of PWDs in governance

Presently, women and girls with disabilities in Nigeria are at zero percent level of participation in governance. Mrs Lois Auta. Photo: Hadiza Abdulrahman

A Non Governmental organisation, Cedar Seed Foundation, has called for more inclusion of persons with disabilities (PWDs) in governance to help address some challenges faced by disability communities.

Inaugurating a project tagged “Disability Inclusion Governance” (DIG) in collaboration with Policy and Legal Advocacy Center (PLAC) and MacArthur Foundation in Abuja, the Executive Director of the Foundation, Mrs Lois Auta laments the spate of discrimination against women with disabilities in politics and the decision-making process in the country.

Mrs Auta called for proper implementation of the 2018 Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act 2022 and other international charters to enable them to contribute to nation building and also compete favourably.

“Article 6 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is captured as “Women with Disabilities” and article 9 and 23 of the Protocol to the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights on Women in Africa, also known as “Maputo Protocol” all advocate our rights to participation in the political and decision-making process and special protection.”

“Some of us have run for elective positions without winning due to factors, barriers, and challenges that are stopping us.” Auta said.

Mrs Auta listed the DIG programme objectives to include:

  • To ensure that no one is left out especially people with disabilities.
  • To specifically target people with disabilities for inclusion in governance and the robust implementation of clause 54 of the Electoral Act 2022.
  • To create a dynamic platform where disability experts, donor agencies, civil society organisations and policy formulators and implementers can converge to chat a positive cause.

The group had embarked on a rally before the briefing, carrying placards with various inscriptions such as “women with disabilities matter in nation building”, “Reserve a quota system for women with disabilities at all levels of government”, and “equal opportunities, diverse voices”.

Reporting by Hadiza Abdulrahman; Editing by Chinasa Ossai and Julian Osamoto