Hundreds of People With Disabilities (PWDs) have mobilised to challenge the Kaduna State Government over allocations for their welfare.
The physically-challenged persons, who were mobilised by Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), protested discrimination against them by the government in the provision of amenities that would mitigate their plight.
During a capacity building programme at the weekend, they also challenged the government to explain how the yearly budgets for improvement on their condition were expended.
Executive Director of CCD, David Anyaele, said the training was aimed at building and strengthening the capacity of citizens to resist corruption in government that continued to affect PWDs.
Anyaele, who was represented by the CCD Manager (Administration and Finance), Mrs. Florence Austin, said that apart from Kaduna, the centre had carried out the training for PWDs in five states, including Kano, Akwa Ibom, Enugu and Lagos.
“We chose these six states because we discovered that some of the states do not have disability act. So we are also working with state actors in those states to see how we can leverage the disability act.
“We want to build the capacity of PWDs from Kaduna on the Freedom of Information (FoI) Act. The training would enable them to ask questions, because there are budgetary allocations for PWDs. Knowing the content of the act will enable them ask government questions about the allocations and how they were expended,” he said.
A professor of Law at Ambrose Alli University (AAU), Ekpoma, Edo State, Dominic Badaiki, while presenting a paper on the use of the FOI Act, demanded accountability from all state actors concerning the allocation of funds and other resources meant for PWDs.
“Government and governance entails accountability on the part of the leaders who are charged to direct and manage the affairs of the states. The state actors are answerable for their actions and inactions.
“Accountability is a constitutional responsibility of every state actor and on the other hand citizens have the right to participate in the governance process,” he stated.
Meanwhile, the chairman of Kaduna chapter of Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD), Suleiman Abdul, said: “A lot of people with disabilities are not aware of their rights because of lack of information.”