Abia State House of Assembly Passes Law Creating Commission for Disabled Persons

Abia State House of Assembly has passed the ‘Disability Bill’ into Law. The Bill which was passed during its plenary on Wednesday establishes a Commission to cater for the needs of persons living with disabilities (PLWDS), protect them from all forms of discrimination and integrate them fully into society.

The Bill which was processed as H.A.B. 23: A Bill for a Law to Establish the Abia State Commission for the Welfare of Disabled Persons was passed into Law as “The Abia State Commission for Disabled Persons”.

Addressing journalists after Plenary, the sponsor of the Bill who is also the House Deputy Leader and Member representing Ukwa East, Hon Paul Taribo, extolled the Speaker of Abia State House of Assembly,  Rt Hon Chinedum Enyinnaya Orji fir giving the Bill all the necessary support and resources required to pass the Bill into Law.

He also thanked his colleagues for their dedication to the processes that saw to the Bill passed into law, saying the Law which was passed to meet all standard conventions of the United Nations (UN) on PLWDs, will ensure that the extensive rights violation and discrimination which they suffer is eliminated.

“I thank the Speaker and my distinguished colleagues for the painstaking efforts they have put in to ensure that this Bill is passed into Law. This is a landmark law arising from the efforts of the 7th Abia State House of Assembly and it is so encompassing that it is based on global best practices for PLWDS.

“The Law consigns actions of governments whereby people with disabilities are usually attached to such Ministries as that of social welfare, humanitarian affairs, youth etc, to history because with the creation of a Commission by the Abia State House of Assembly for this category of our fellow citizens which will be headed by one of them, they take their own destiny in their hands and live a normal life.

“I’m confident that it will soon be assented to by the governor and implemented, in order to give persons with disabilities a sense of belonging”, Hon Taribo said.

The Speaker while addressing his colleagues on the Law during plenary expressed gratitude to them for working assiduously in ensuring that the Law is passed and that it has come to stay.

“This Law shall be cited as ‘The Abia State Commission for Disabled Persons Law 2022′”, he announced.

Meanwhile, the Executive Director of Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), Mr David Anyaele, who had been fighting for the welfare of persons with disabilities, applauded the lawmakers for the passage.

Anyaele described the passage as a strong demonstration by the lawmakers that all lives are precious, in particular the lives of residents with disabilities.

He stated: “Persons with disabilities in Abia State are the most excluded in governance at the subnational level in Nigeria due to absence of legal framework for the protection of the rights and dignity.

“With the passage of this bill, the end of exclusion of Abia residents with disabilities in governance by state and non state actors is coming to an end.”

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