Wednesday, August 17, 2022

Persons with disabilities seek better access to airport facilities

“We are facing difficulty boarding the aircraft and climbing the stairs of airport buildings due to the lack of or non-functional elevators and ramps.”

• July 25, 2022
Persons With Disabilities (PWDs)
Persons With Disabilities (PWDs)

The Coalition of Disability Organisations has called on the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority to ensure that airport facilities are accessible to persons with disabilities (PWDs).

David Anyaele, the convener of the coalition/ executive director, Centre for Citizens with Disabilities, made the call on Monday in Kano, when the group paid an advocacy visit to the Commissioner for Justice, Musa Lawan.

“We are facing difficulty boarding the aircraft and climbing the stairs of airport buildings due to the lack of or non-functional elevators and ramps.

“Communication barriers, absence of sign language interpreters, lack of Disability Desk at airports, lack of dedicated seats for PWDs, among others,” Mr Anyaele said.

Mr Anyaele was represented by the outgoing chairman of Spinal Cord Injuries Association of Nigeria, Kano State chapter, Abdul Haruna.

He said the call became necessary following the outcome of the group’s research on the challenges their members were facing at airports in the country.

Mr Anyaele further explained that the visit was meant to sensitise the relevant authorities on the need to change the narrative.

Responding, the commissioner expressed delight over the visit by the group, saying, “People living with disabilities have been neglected seriously for long.”

The commissioner added that: “We must work together with the relevant authorities to do the needful for the betterment of this category of people.”

He assured the group of his support towards addressing the challenges faced by its members, and promised to send a memo to the governor on their demand.

A member of the group, Abba Shehu, a deaf, who spoke through an interpreter, recalled how he missed his flight due to the lack of an interpreter at the airport. 


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