The Human Development Initiatives, a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), has called for review of the policy document on inclusive education to enhance qualitative basic learning.
Mrs Olufunso Owasanoye, Executive Director of the organisation, made the call in a message to mark the 2021 International Day for Persons with Disability (PwDs) in Lagos on Friday.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the theme of the 15th edition of the annual event was: “Leadership and Participation of Persons With Disabilities Towards an Inclusive, Accessible and Sustainable Post Covid-19 World’’.
Owasanoye said that the review would enable Nigeria and Lagos in particular achieve the Sustainable Development Goal four (SDG4), which guaranteed the right to free, compulsory and qualitative basic education to a child.
According to her, the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic has made it mandatory to deliver on SDG 4.
She urged the Lagos State Government and House of Assembly to make disability issues visible by ensuring that all budget areas address disability challenges, especially in the education sector.
She called for the recruitment of more teachers with special needs skills to increasingly promote inclusive education.
The executive director appealed to the state government to make special provision, especially transportation and housing for teachers posted to rural and hard-to-reach areas.
She further said that government should ensure that school infrastructure, facilities and surroundings were accessible to children with disabilities.
She quoted data from some UN agencies, as saying that 15 per cent of the world’s population, or estimated one billion people, live with disabilities thus constituting the world’s largest minority (WHO).
“Also, 80 per cent of persons with disabilities live in developing countries like Nigeria, according to the UN Development Programme.
“Then, 90 per cent of children with disabilities in developing countries, like Nigeria, do not attend school due to various barriers, says UNESCO,” she said. (NAN)