Reps introduces Bill to appoint persons with disabilities into Federal Executive Council

A bill seeking appointment of young persons and persons living with disabilities has been introduced in Nigeria’s House of Representatives.

The bill tittled: “#YES-WE-CAN”, would compel the President to appoint much younger persons and those living with disabilities as Ministers and members of the board of government agencies and parastatals.

The bill which will not just be an act of Parliament, will have the provision enshrined in the Constitution through the ongoing Constitution review in order to bridge the general gaps in service to the nation.

Sponsor of the bill and Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Femi Gbajabiamila offering a personal explanation on the objective of the proposed Bill called for amendment of sections 147, 151, 192 and 196 of the Constitution to give room for the inclusion of young persons and persons with disabilities.

He stressed the need to make it statutory the appointments of young Nigerians and those living with disabilities as Ministers, Commissioners, Special Advisers and by extension, Chairman and Members of Statutory bodies, boards and Agencies.

We have been abandoned by government – People living with disabilities

According to Gbajabiamila, these category of people should be brought on the concurrent list so that their welfare can effectively be taken care off.

The Speaker expressed optimism that in showing genuine commitment to political empowerment of young people, and persons living with disabilities, political leaders will see the bill as an opportunity.

“This is on the premise that the issue of appointment is at the discretion of Political Leaders and decision makers such as the President, Governors.

“This can be much easily achieved compared to seeking elective positions,” he said.

He further explained that the bill was an addendum to the “Not too Young to run bill” and it would greatly complement it if passed into law, adding that the cost of contesting elections posed a huge challenge to these category of people.

“This include cultural and especially financial constraints giving the cost of campaigns, nomination forms and party primaries which puts the older generation at an advantage over young people.

“Persons with disabilities are not left out in these challenges and are even faced with greater burden of poor societal value system, discrimination and unfriendly political party structures and policies,” he added.

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