Cedar Seed Foundation has disclosed how corruption adversely affect Persons with Disabilities in Nigeria.
The disclosure was made at a public policy forum tagged: “Social Inclusion: Nigerian Accountability Conversations”. The forum was organized in partnership with The Yar’adua Foundation – with support from MacArthur Foundation.
A key speaker at the occasion, Lois Auta, Founder and CEO, Cedar Seed Foundation laments how funds meant to empower or employ Persons with Disabilities (PWDs) are being mismanaged by those in power.
According to her: “this has affected Persons with Disabilities in devastating ways – in some cases leading to death.
Auta gave instance of a lady on wheelchair who died in Jos during the COVID-19 lockdown 2020 because she couldn’t afford her hospital bills.
While appreciating the Yar’adua and MacArthur Foundations for their focus on disability issues, the CEO however expressed grief over the high rate of unemployment among PWDs in Nigeria despite existence of local and international disability laws.
Also speaking at the forum was Amara Nwankpa, Director, Public Policy Initiatives, The Yar’adua Foundation. Nwankpa, in her remarks noted that the essence of the forum was to intensify advocacy on anticorruption effort focused on self enforcement and public engagement.
She spoke on what the citizens can do better when they are in power and how they should hold themselves accountable. According to her, that is one way citizens can start the fight against corruption in Nigeria.
Other speakers at the forum included Patience Dickson from the National Commission For Persons With Disabilites (NCPWD), Donald Unaka from Potters Gallery Initiative, amongst others.
At the panel session were panelists: Apolmida Haruna Tsammani (Ministry of Justice and HalyHope Foundation), Pascal Chigozie Onyeocha (I Smile Because You Smile Foundation), Cynthia Ukachi (Network for Women With Disabilites), Comrade Chris Agbo (Qualitative Magazine and JOMIDA Foundation). The panel was moderated by Edwin Iguodala of Irede Foundation.
Dignified guests at the event includes Crystal Chigbu, Executive Director, Irede Foundation, Joe Ajaero of Nigeria Labour Congress, a representative of the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Labour and Productivity, Ella Onyebe, amongst others.