• en

Economic Hardship: Don’t Join Protest Against Tinubu, FG Begs PWDs

“I implore you not to resort to protests or join anybody or group to demonstrate against the government.”

Persons With Disabilities should not be involved in any protest against the administration of President Bola Tinubu during these trying times because the brighter days are ahead, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Special Needs and Equal Opportunities,
Mohammed Abba Isa, begged on Tuesday.

He also announced that the government is actively working on providing palliatives for PWDs to cushion the effects of the economic downturn.

According to him, his would handle the distribution of the palliatives to deserving beneficiaries, including members of the disability community as as they are released.

The presidential aide pleaded with the heads of the different disability clusters to collaborate by collating a comprehensive database of their members who will benefit from the palliatives to ensure an efficient and effective distribution process.

Isa who said these in Abuja during a stakeholders consultative meeting of PWDs, assured them that the government of President Bola Ahmed Tinubu is aware of their struggles and understand their difficulties.

At the event, the Chief Responsibility Officer, Centre for Ability Rehabilitation and Empowerment (CARE), Dr. Chike Okogwu, said PWDs are asking for more from government.

“We were being left behind. But like Oliver Twist, we want more. Society makes us believe that if you’re a PWLD, it is your destiny with God. Disability may be my destiny but poverty is not my destiny.

“We need financing inclusion, take this to Mr. President. As they are giving out loans, give us. We need access to loans, medical facilities, justice, education. Palliative is the smallest of what we need. We want more persons among us to be appointed as Ministers. Every political appointee must have their PAs among us” Okogwu said.

Isa acknowledged that there is economic hardship in Nigeria.

He said, “I understand the challenges and hardships that many of you are facing, especially amidst the current economic difficulties in our country.

“However, I must tell you that the government of the day remains steadfast in its commitment to improving the standard of living for all citizens, particularly for Persons With Disabilities, in alignment with the Renewed Hope Agenda.

“I urge you to remain calm and patient during these trying times. While the road may seem tough now, I assure you that brighter days are ahead. The Renewed Hope Agenda is on course and working. I have strong belief that the policies and initiatives put in place by this government are aimed at yielding positive results in the long run. Your cooperation and support are invaluable as we navigate through these challenges together.

“I implore you not to resort to protests or join anybody or group to demonstrate against the government. Instead, I urge you to trust in the government’s intentions and efforts to alleviate your hardship. I am pleased to announce that the government is actively working on providing palliatives to cushion the effects of the economic downturn.

“In furtherance of the mandate given to me by Mr President to liaise with MDAs and sub-national governments to ensure the inculcation of disability requirements and perspectives in their policies and programs, I have held series of strategic meetings and engagements with stakeholders and development partners in the last three months which were aimed at building a national consensus on creating a disability friendly environment which will bring about development and prosperity to members of our community.”

Isa recalled a strategic engagement he had with Mr President through his Chief of Staff, Rt. Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila,and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) on how to create a better life for PWDs in Nigeria.

“The strategic meeting centred around how to enhance the livelihood of Persons With Disabilities and provision of palliatives to improve their welfare, and we also discussed issues on how to scale up the Medium, Small and Micro Enterprises (MSME) of PWDs, as well as how to achieve inclusion of PWDs in governance at all levels and stratas in line with the strong desire and dream of Mr President to see every segment of the society well catered to and accommodated in his administration.

“In January, I proactively facilitated the empowerment of Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) through the Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) by ensuring that the agency allocated the prescribed five per cent statutory quota for PWDs in accordance with the National Disability Act in the National Business Skills Development Initiative (NBSDI) recently launched by the agency”, he emphasized.

Friday Olokor, Abuja

Follow us on: