Prof. Olufemi Fakolade, a lecturer, Department of Special Education University of Ibadan on Wednesday, called on government to ensure that people living with disabilities in the country were allowed to participate in leadership roles.
Fakolade made the call in an interview the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Ibadan while commenting on the theme of the 2019 World disability day celebration.
This year theme for the Day is “Promoting The Participation of People With Disability in Leadership Roles.”
He noted that there was nothing wrong in giving people with disability, who possessed proven leadership qualities, chance to prove their worth in leadership positions.
The don said: “There are various ways in which individuals living with disability could be allowed to participate in leadership roles.
“They can be allowed to take up leadership role in the community and even at group or organisational levels.
“Again, there must be deliberate policy that would facilitate the political inclusion of the physically challenged in the society.
“For instance, the National Assembly can formulate laws that would make it possible for the physically challenged in the society to occupy certain political seats or political posts.
“I am aware of a certain governor, today, who has some hearing difficulties and this is not hindering his effectiveness as the state governor.
“Such situation can be extended to other public and private offices.
“All persons experiencing one form of disability or the other but with proven leadership ability should be included in decision-making process.
“In the advanced world, people with physical challenge are given leadership roles such as President of a country, Vice Chancellor of universities, company directors and so on.
“It is my advice that we should try and trust them with leadership positions and see what will be the difference.”
NAN recalls that former Presidents of United States of America Franklin Roosevelt as well as Woodrow Wilson, at various times, governed their country while they were on wheelchair and till acknowledged as some of the best leaders ever produced by that country. (NAN)