At a workshop recently organized by Persons with Disabilities,PWD, a resource person and former commissioner for Transport, Enugu State, Engr. Beloved-Dan Anike, has said that instead of giving alms to people living with disabilities, they be rather be gainfully employed to showcase their talents. Anike who said this at the one day workshop tagged, “breaking the barriers in the lives of people with disabilities,” held at Agbani, the headquarters of Nkanu West local Government Area of Enugu State, organized by a nongovernmental organization, NGO, Initiative for the Eradication of Poverty and Empowerment of Disabled, IFEPED, for all the disabled in Enugu East Senatorial Zone, said the disabled should be gainfully employed and not employed for employment sake without productivity.
“They should be assigned to work for their pay. Government should formulate what people should be doing to be useful to themselves and the society.
” The disabled should not be asking for inclusiveness but where they will live a fulfilled life from what they are doing,” he said pointing out that countries that value human lives carter for their citizenry even the less privileged among them.
The former commissioner said that threat to the people living with disabilities is social exclusiveness which limits them from climbing the social ladder.
He said that rather than exclude the disable, they should be gainfully employed and allowed to participate in sports, education and the media.
Speaking at the occasion, the President of IFEPED, Victor Clifford Ugwu, abhorred begging among the people living with disabilities, saying that they should rather be given opportunities to grow.
Ugwu said he would like government to stop the disabled from begging which to him reduces their prestige but instead a programme should be evolved to take the disabled out of the streets.
“To us as a people, begging for alms along the street or at market places do more harm.than good to the beggars as it causes humiliation, degradation and avoidance of friends and relatives among other disadvantages.
” Agreed that successive governments in this state, Enugu State, through the Ministry of Gender and Social Development, have done a lot to clear beggars off the streets, we believe that a new approach should be adopted to ensure a lasting solution to those efforts.
“We, therefore suggest that efforts should be made to develop the mind and business of beggars.
” In this case, Ministry of Gender Affairs and Social Development, in collaboration with IFEPED will regulate or remove profession/career of begging for alms in the society with a drafted ideas on how to manage each and everyone of them wherever they are found in the state,” he declares.
Also speaking at the occasion, the Enugu State chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, Rev. Emmanuel Ede, said every effort should be made to.empower the less privileged, adding that organizations and governments wishing to give employment or any form of empowerment should do so through their organization, IFEPED.