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LASG Educates Parents on Rights of Children Living With Disability

LASG Educates Parents on Rights of Children Living With DisabilityIn renewed effort towards making life more bearable for children living with disability in various parts of Lagos State, the Office of the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Social Development, has enlightened parents of children in this category of the rights of their children.

The enlightenment session held during the second Annual Stakeholders’ Forum on Disability with the theme: “Knowing the Rights of Children Living with Disabilities”.

Addressing the parents present at the event, the Special Adviser, Mrs Joyce Onafowokan, commended them for the interest shown in attending the forum. She said the event was organised to further address the thorny issues affecting children living with disabilities in our society, particularly Lagos State.

According to the Special Adviser, Ambode is committed to making life more meaningful for every child living with disability in the state.

She disclosed that since the first annual Stakeholders’ Forum in November, 2017, there had been noticeable improvement in the skills required for effective handling and management of children living with disability by parents and guardians.

Onafowokan therefore said this year’s edition of the Stakeholders’ Forum was meant to reveal the basic rights of children living with disability and to strengthen the partnership between parents and other stakeholders for the benefit of the society as a whole.

In her presentation at the occasion, Associate Professor/Consultant, Pediatrician, Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Dr. B.A. Animashaun stated that before 2006, there was no specific global policy relating to the rights of children living with disability.

However, she recalled that the United Nations Organisation, in 2006, adopted a convention that spelt out the rights of our children with disability. According to her, the convention became a legal entity.

Animashaun acknowledged that even though there are many challenges that people in the category face, she revealed that the UN convention was meant to promote the fact that these children have equal rights with others.

Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode

”They are entitled to social protection just like every other person; there should be no discrimination against them. Nobody should refer to them as handicapped or physically challenged. We should respect them for their dignity, and humanity”, she stated.

She advised that parents should always focus on the positive aspects of their lives and do all that is necessary to boost their confidence.

Similarly, Director-General, Office of Education Quality Assurance, Lagos State Ministry of Education, Mrs. Ronke Soyombo, who spoke on “Ability in Disability’ said the children living with disability should not be relegated to the background, as they are entitled to free education up to secondary school level in Lagos State.

She charged parents to be attentive towards the learning style of their wards. “Remember, your influence outweighs others”, she stated.

Director, Office of the Public Defender, Lagos State Ministry of Justice, Mrs. Omotola Rotimi also educated parents at the occasion about the various laws the State Government had promulgated for the defence and benefit of children living with disabilities.

She advised the parents that it is illegal for anyone to disrespect the children by way of violence, neglect or discrimination. She urged the parents to desist from such acts and report any such cases in their midst through the Mandatory Reporting System available in Lagos State.


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