Sagiru Ado Abubakar
In its effort to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities, the Centre for Information Technology and Development (CITAD) has on Sunday 4th December, 2022 joined the global communities to commemorate this year’s International Day of Persons with Disabilities 2022. International Day of Persons with Disabilities is a global effort aim at promoting empowerment and helping to create real opportunities for people with disabilities. The celebration is a one-day event held at ground floor, CITAD with a theme “Kano State Disability Law: Prospects and Challenges” has a representation of almost all clusters of People Living with Disabilities in Kano State and dwelled deeply on the Kano State Disability Law signed by His Excellency Executive Governor of Kano State, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje. Malam Isyaku Garba, CITAD Programs Cordinator represented the Executive Director of CITAD at the event. He welcomed the participants and said that International Day of Persons with Disabilities gives opportunity to government, policy makers, human right activists, development workers and every stakeholder to deliberate on strategic ways to make effective demand for inclusion and accountability on matters that affect people living with abilities. He then hinted that CITAD has been making effort to establish a centre that promote inclusion, access, participation, disability rights and mainstreaming of issues of critical concern of people living with disabilities.
Malam Sagiru Ado Abubakar coordinates the activities of people living with disabilities at CITAD. He took the participants back on the discussion during Kano Social Influencers Summit (KANSIS 2022) on the arrangement INEC made with regard to PWDs during the forthcoming general elections. He then informed that ‘Technology, Disability and Election’ breakout session in KANSIS 2022 was one of the best sessions in KANSIS 2022 in term of attendance and won momentum of dignitaries.
Hajiya Bilkisu Ibrahim Mahmoud, a lecturer at College of Arts Science and Remedial Studies, (CAS) Kano chaired the event. In her opening remarks, she acknowledged the work of CITAD in helping the PWDs in Kano to understand the law, makes sure that the law has been provided with all necessary assistance and proper implementation. She apologized to CITAD for her inability to attend the KANSIS 2022 organized by CITAD saying that she was given short notice a day only to the event.
Malam Saifullahi Mukhtar Sadiq, Program Officer, Kanawa Educational Foundation for the Disables and Secretary Visually Impaired Educational Forum, Tudun Maliki, Kano made the first presentation. He presented paper on the Kano State Person with Disability Law signed by His Excellency Governor of Kano State, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje. He said that the bill was approved November 22 held at Government House, Kano. Saifullahi explained that the law would pave a way for the inclusion and development of PWDs in the state. The law has provided for the establishment of a board to oversee the affairs of PWDs and when established, the board would be given all the necessary assistance to make the law functional according to international standard.
Other content of the law maintained that no person with disability shall be discriminated against on the ground of his or her disability by any person or institution in any manner of circumstances. No person with disability shall be subjected to prejudice or negative segregation, including those based on gender, work, education, health, age, tradition and any other area of life. State, Local Government and private sectors must give special consideration to PWDs in social walfare, and other programs in line with the existing law. After highlighting major sections of the law he then informed that the draft of the law is available with them and waiting for the final version of the law from the state government.
Barrister Nura Ahmad Muhammad, Executive Director MUFARKA Youth Development Association, made the last presentation. He looked into the prospects and challenges that the law might have face. He said that now that the Kano State Disability Law has been assented by the Governor of Kano State, the implementation of the Law is depending largely on the establishment of the Commission responsible for the implementation. However, we can make a look at the prospects and challenges with regards to the implementation of the law. He listed as follows:
• Protection for the rights and dignity of Person with Disabilities. The Law will ensure the protection of People with Disabilities in Kano.
• Legal framework. Disability Law is a legal document which will help in protecting the rights of People with Disabilities.
• Sustainability of Policy. Now that the Bill is passed into, there will be continuity in policies and programs related to People with Disabilities.
• Proper implementation of the law. This can be achieved if the Commission created by the Law has been established.
• Funding of the Commission. For the Commission to function properly it has to be funded adequately. And all the fund allocated to the commission be released on time.
• Awareness Creation. Members of the public need to sensitized about the new Law. This will help in the successful implementation of the Law in Kano State.
At the end of the program, participants commented as follows
- Malam Hamza Isa Baffa, PRO, Kanawa Educational Foundation for Disabled drew the attention of the participants to make good plan for follow ups. He said that now election is coming, they can engage political aspirants as early as possible to see the actualization of the law
- Malam Yahya A. Yahya, Chairman National Association of Physically Challenge People, Kano state chapter worried on how some clusters of PWDs in Kano are busy making contact to govern the commission when established. He said that until now there is no mechanism for implementation
- Amina Abubakar Haruna urged the clusters of PWDs to make effort on sensitization and awareness creation to the wider public
- Fatima Aminu, a physically Challenged participants requested CITAD to hold their hands and continue guiding them in order to ensure fully implementation of the law in the state
- Safina Sani emphasized that many institutions in the state are not aware of the law, she said that with social media training the undergone at CITAD they will take that advantage and ensure proper enlightenment on social media