The Chairman, Atakunmosa West Central Local Council Development Area, Anthony Adeboye has asserted that the involvement of people with disabilities in governance and socio-economic activities would give them senses of belonging.
In a statement issued by the council’s lnformation Officer, Mr. Adeoye Adegbohungbe, the chairman made this known in an address presented while receiving the Osun State chapter of Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD) on an official visit to the council.
Adeboye who was represented by the Vice Chairman, Julius Fakowajo posited that there is ability in disability, noting that they may be physically challenged but are not low in intelligence.
He referred to Dr. Bala Usman, a cripple, historian, social critic and senior lecturer at Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria who once served as a political adviser in the government of the defunct Kaduna state and was never found wanting.
Similarly, he cited the example of a blind lawyer who was appointed as a Special Assistant on Physically Challenged Matters by a former civilian governor of Oyo state.
“Some of them are well educated and a lot of them are skillfully endowed and trained, a development that has proven right the saying that ‘there is ability in disability’.
“Such citizens can be adjudged to be responsible, having not resorted to street begging and they deserve to be assisted by government, non-governmental organisations and public spirited and wealthy individuals to enable them live a meaningful life and of course fulfill their destinies on earth”, Adeboye submitted.
The council boss also assured that his council area would do everything humanly possible within the ambit of available resources to better the lot of people with disabilities in his area of jurisdiction.
“You are part and parcel of the society and you will be treated as such, as ‘what is good for the goose is also good for the gander’”.
Adeboye made handsome donations to both the state and local chapters of the association for the upkeep of their members.
Speaking at the occasion, the state President of JONAPWD, Mr. Kehinde Onitiju said what his members needed is empathy and not sympathy.
While stating that his people were not lazy, he called for economic empowerment and provision of white collar jobs for qualified members of his association as they too voted for political functionaries in power.