The Centre for Citizens with Disabilities (CCD), has urged the Federal Government to declare Jan. 17 as National Disability Day in Nigeria.

Mr David Anyaele, CCD Executive Director made the appeal while speaking at an interactive forum with media executives in Abuja in commemoration of the first anniversary of the National Disability Act.

Anyaele appealed to President Muhammadu Buhari to fast track the establishment of the National Commission on Disability as prescribed by the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities Prohibition Act 2019.

He said establishing the commission was imperative towards speedy implementation and enforcement of provisions of the law.

“The need for the establishment of the commission cannot be over emphasised. The commission is as good as the law itself; without the commission, implementation of the law may not be 100 per cent achievable,’’ Anyaele said.

He urged media stakeholders not to relent in mainstreaming disability issues in their reports whether online or via print or electronic media platform.

The Abuja Bureau Chief of The Guardian, Mr Igho Akeregha, in his speech, said that although story angles for the media could be very elusive, publicity on disability issues would be heightened.

Akeregha advised CCD not to limit its engagement to the media alone but to also engage with other stakeholders including Association of Builders, Architects, public and private structure owners.

He urged CCD to create platforms for enlightenment, sensitisation, training and re-training of media practitioners for effective reportage.

Mr Edetaen Ojo, Executive Director of Media Rights Agenda reiterated his commitment towards supporting the group’s activities by way of engagements with relevant stakeholders.

Ojo urged executives from various media platforms to champion the course for the implementation of the law and establishment of the commission by mainstreaming disability issues in their reportage.

“Not every Person Living with Disabilities is literate and same goes for the general public, so a lot of sensitisation are required from the media on the law, its content, applicability and the imperative of the establishment of the commission,’’ he said.