Former lawmaker who represented Kaduna Central, Sen. Shehu Sani, has explained why President Bola Tinubu should give 25% fuel subsidy palliative to persons with disabilities (PWDs).
Sani gave the explanation during a visit to the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities (NCPWD) in Abuja on Friday.
Sani, who led leaders of PWDs from Kaduna State, said the 25% consideration was necessary in view of the impact of economic challenges on them.
He said PWDs in Nigeria, who were over 35 million, were not only grappling with disabilities but also poverty, adding that “they face double tragedy”.
Sani expressed the hope that the palliative would be judiciously distributed when it would be released to the commission on their behalf.
He commended the commission’s hard work in ensuring that the mandate of the commission was followed through despite funding challenges.
Sani said he was passionate about ensuring that persons with disabilities were given the opportunity to contribute to national development.
The Executive Secretary of NCPWD, Mr James Lalu, also called on well-meaning Nigerians to support the commission to enable it to carry out its responsibilities.
Lalu said the call become expedient going by the plight of persons with disabilities in Nigeria.
He commended the Federal Government for providing job opportunities for some persons with disabilities, adding that over 200 people with disabilities have been offered jobs in the public service and they have started work.
Lalu also commended former President Muhammadu Buhari for his support and President Bola Tinubu, who has started carrying PWD along.
Lalu further commended Sen. Shehu Sani for his contribution towards the passage of the bill that established the commission.
Timi Frank condemns Biden’s invite to Tinubu, says its inappropriate, unacceptable
The purported request of the President of the United States of America, Joe Biden, to meet President Bola Tinubu has been described by Former Deputy National Publicity Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Timi Frank as inappropriate, unacceptable and condemnable.
In view of the fact that Tinubu currently lacks legitimacy as the result of the 2023 Presidential Election is being contested in court, Frank said the meeting billed to take place at the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) in September is suspicious
He said Biden’s request conveyed by a US Presidential envoy and Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, Ambassador Molly Phee, defeats the stance of the American Government on democracy and sanctity of the ballot.
“President Joe Biden is asking to meet with you on the sidelines of UNGA and you are the only African leader he has requested to meet. It is a mark of his high regard for your leadership,”
Ambassador Phee said during his meeting with Tinubu recently.
Frank said: “This move by Biden is certainly anti-American stance on rule of law and a bad example in collaborations in view of the pendency of suits challenging the declaration of Tinubu as President and multiple investigations ongoing concerning his integrity,
true identity and academic records both in Nigeria and USA.
“It’s an insult to say that Tinubu is the only African president that Biden has chosen to meet on the sidelines of UNGA when they know his legitimacy deficit and the fraudulent election that brought him as president.
“For me, even if they want to discuss Africa affairs, they can discuss with any other legitimate African leader within the continent.
“However, it is clear the only reason they are seeking this meeting is to protect their selfish interests and it is for this type of unbecoming action that the US is now trying former President Donald Trump.
Frank who is the Ambassador of the United Liberation Movement for West Papau (ULMWP), to the East Africa and Middle East, added:
“It is disheartening to note that at a time when everyone is eagerly waiting on the outcome of the Presidential Election Tribunal, the US will seek to play to the gallery by inviting Tinubu as the sole African leader Biden wishes to meet at UNGA.
He urged Biden to rescind his invitation to Tinubu pending the ruling of the Presidential Election Petition Tribunal on the suits challenging the legitimacy of the President.
He said: “The USA should know that any other African President can collaborate with them for mutual benefit provided they legitimately hold power in trust for the people.
“Why is President Biden in a hurry to meet Tinubu at UNGA other than to protect US interest in the West African sub-region, especially in view of recent military coup in Niger Republic and the reports of a putsch in Gabon.
“We are curious as to the true intent of the proposed meeting save for divide-and-rule-system employed
by developed countries in their relations with African countries, otherwise there is no need for this hurry to meet Tinubu until the courts have decided the true winner of the Nigerian Presidential election.
“The US must allow the Nigerian judicial system to determine the legitimacy or otherwise of President Tinubu before it seeks to discuss sensitive issues with him concerning the West African sub-region.
“This is very crucial and necessary as anything otherwise will seek to legitimize an illegality at a time when Nigerians are eager to see to a final closure on this matter.
“Again, need we say that this kind of bestowal of recognition on illegitimate administrations by America and other western powers is responsible for new incidences of coups in the African subregion?
“We must state categorically that some of us as allies and friends of USA have nothing against American pursuing its interests in Nigeria or Africa but they must not do it to the detriment of people of Nigeria or Africa.
“Rather, diplomatic and business relations and collaborations between the two sovereign nations should be done in a manner befitting both nations considering the views and interest of the Nigerian people. We believe in them but they must try and also do things that will benefit Nigeria.
“As true friends, we will call them out when they go wrong and applaud them when they’re right as regards issues concerning Africa in general and Nigeria in particular.”
Palliative Distribution: PWDs laments over marginalisation in JIgawa
From Ahmed Rufa’i, Dutse
The JIgawa state chairman of the Persons With Disability (PWDs), Alhaji Adamu Shuaibu has expressed concern over alleged marginalization of the group in the ongoing palliative distribution in JIgawa state.
The chairman who spoke to newsmen in Dutse, the state capital said it is an outright violation of the state’s Persons with Disabilities Law (2016)
Alhaji Shuaibu noted that his members are being marginalized in the scheme of things in the state despite the existing law that addressed some of their challenges including accessibility to buildings and economic empowerment.
He accused the state government of alienating the association as none of their members is part of the distribution committees for the palliatives at either state or local government level.
According to him “PWDs like any other Nigerian, are suffering from the effect of fuel subsidy removal by the federal government, however, he observed that their members were left out in the ongoing distribution of palliatives across the 27 local government areas in JIgawa state and they are not considered to benefit”.
The PWDs Chair added that “Despite the provision of the law, PWDs are still being discriminated against and marginalized in the state hence he said they are seeking the full implementation of the law”.
He maintained that they are supposed to be included in all the committees constituted by the government to handle the distribution of the palliatives.
The chairman insisted that the discrimination of the members in by the government is jeopardizing their interest, rights and privileges of the members.
Alhaji Shuaibu explained further that “There are few employment opportunities for PWDs. We thereby seek for the employment of our members in both governments and private organizations in the state as enshrined in the law”.
“We also seek for the launching of the PWD Fund as stated in the law to support PWDs in the state, Alhaji Shuaibu said.
He emphasis that “Section 4 of the disabilities law stimulated that the state and local government councils shall consider persons with disabilities in their programmes and services, especially social protection programmes, Shuaibu quoted the law.
He claimed that its members which comprise the blind, deaf, lepers, crippled and the Albinos constituted over 25 per cent of the total population of the state.
Lalu reiterates on the importance of Census for PWDS
The Executive Secretary, National Commission for Persons With Disabilities, Mr James David Lalu has urged Persons with Disabilities all over the country to come out en-mass and be counted.
Head Press and Public Relations Unit of the commission Mbanefo JohnMichaels in a statement quoted the ES to have made the plea at the town hall meeting put together in Lagos wednesday by the National Population Commissíon as a mark of sensitization for the citizens and residents in Nigeria.
Lalu at the occasion reminded PWDs that their population commands political, as well as economic strength in the country for equitable distribution of the nation’s wealth and resources.
He further urged parents and guardians of PWDs to encourage their Wards to participate in the forthcoming population census exercise for the desired visibility and inclusion.
The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed who was represented at the event by the Director General, National Orientation Agency Dr. Garba Abari spoke extensively on the importance of holding the census this year, stating that the Headcount is quite invaluable at this point the world population is increasing geometrically.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the Chairman, National Population Commission Nasir Isa Kwarra, who was represented by Dr. Eyitayo Oyetunji mentioned that the 2006 census was far outdated, hence the need to have a fresh enumeration cannot be overemphasized.
“No Nation can grow proportionally without adequate statistical data of her citizenry which is a basic guide to planning for development”, he asserted.
Eyitayo, therefore, appealed to citizens to cooperate with the enumerators while on national assignment in order to make the population census a seamless exercise.
In her keynote address, the Hon. Minister, Federal Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Hajiya Sadia Umar Farouq, indicated that millions of the most vulnerable groups in Nigeria need to be captured accurately for the attainment of the poverty alleviation programme of President Muhammadu Buhari even as he bows out later this year.
The Minister equally reiterated that the vision of President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration to lift 10 million Nigerians out of poverty in the next 10 years has been achieved to a large extent through the establishment of the Social Safety Nets since the inception of his administration.
Other stakeholders present at the event include the Director General, Voice of Nigeria, Mazi Osita Okechukwu, Executive members of the Nigerian Union of Journalists etc.
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