Minister of Power, Works and Housing Babatunde Fashola has unveiled the federal government’s plan to redesign and remodel all its assets nationwide to comply with the law of Persons Living with Disabilities (PLWD).
President Muhammadu Buhari had on January 24, signed into law a bill to prohibit discrimination against Persons Living with Disabilities (PLWD).
The bill included provisions for specific actions that must be taken within a period of five years to provide opportunities for such persons to live as normal a life as possible.
Fashola, who addressed a press conference on the implementation of the national maintenance framework for public buildings in Abuja last Thursday, said it was the second developmental stride recorded by the ministry following its approval by the Federal Executive Council (FEC).
He said: “This is another opportunity for job creation; to re-design, to re-model, to retrofit all our assets nationwide to comply with the law as signed by the President. The President has raised the bar for construction, services and a new way of life for Nigerians when he signed the law to protect people living with disability from discrimination and exclusion.
“We have five years to comply, and this requires that all our buildings must have lifts and ramps. By this, I mean, well designed ramps for people confined to their wheelchairs, not hills they cannot use on their own. We must modify all our toilets with support for our brothers and sisters who are living with disabilities; and we must build sidewalks for them to use our roads without colliding with vehicles”.
The minister stated airports and parking lots in buildings must also become compliant with international best practices by providing corridors and facilities for people living with disabilities at arrival and departure points.
He said a minimum number of slots clearly designated must be provided for vehicles owned by people living with disabilities.
“This is the Nigeria that beckons upon us from today and the immediate future, a Nigeria where public infrastructure works because they are maintained. A Nigeria where everybody has a secure sense of belonging because they can use their skills and labour to earn a decent income and retain their dignity,’’ he said.