Physically challenged people on Tuesday threatened to shut down every activity of the five south eastern states if they fail to meet their demands of fair share in the society.
Mr. Chimezie Nwizu, leader of the group in Orlu Zone of Imo State, stated this in Enugu at a programme aimed at marking the 2017 World Disabled Peoples Day organised by a non-governmental organisation known as Initiative for Eradication of Poverty and Empowerment of the Disabled, IFEPED.
According to Nwizu, they had embarked on a similar demonstration some time ago in Imo State to drive home the need for the governments to care for the physically challenged in the states that make up the South East and said that if nothing is done urgently to address their socio-economic challenges, they may adopt the same measure of demonstrating to government houses.
Nwizu also said that it was the right of the physically challenged people that their governments take care of them in terms providing employment and other needs, pointing out that before Governor Okorocha of Imo State assumed power as the executive governor of the state, he used to take care of them but regretted that since he became governor, he seemed to have forgotten them, hence the need for them to demonstrate to draw the attention of the governments to their plight.
Speaking to newsmen on the importance of the World Disabled Day and why he took it upon himself to organise the day with the help of his NGO, IFEPED, the Director, Mr. Victor Ugwu said that since the government has asked them to leave the streets and not to engage in begging for a living, the government has to take care of their needs by providing them with employment and empowering some of them that have learnt one craft or trade.
Ugwu used the occasion to appeal to well-meaning people in the society as well as corporate organisations to help the disabled maximise their potentials by assisting them in any way they can.
“Members of the society should help us financially and even educationally, too, so as to make our lives more meaningful,” Ugwu pleads.
The IFEPED said that Governor Ugwuanyi of Enugu State has promised to give employment to their members that are educated and to offer scholarship others who are willing to go to school from the primary school to tertiary institution and urged his colleagues to cash in on the opportunity when it comes.
Moses Oyediran, Enugu