As part of efforts to eradicate the rate of abuse on the vulnerable especially the children in Lagos, Office of the Public Defender (OPD) has taken its enlightenment campaign on Child’s Right Law to children with special needs with the aim to educate them on necessary steps to prevent an infringement on their rights.
Speaking during the visit to Wesley Schools for the Hearing Impaired in Surulere, the Director, Office of Public Defender, Mrs. Olubukola Salami said the OPD was established to defend the voiceless when their rights are infringed, urging the pupils to see themselves as leaders of tomorrow and that there is Ability in their disability.
Mrs. Salami, who was represented at the event by Mr. Fatai Borokinni, the Leader of the Campaign Awareness Committee expressed displeasure at the treatment being meted on children with special needs by the general public, adding that having one disability or the other shouldn’t result in neglect or rejection.
According to her, “The daily reality for most children with disability is that they are often condemned to a ‘poor start in life’ and deprived of opportunities to develop to their full potential and participate in societal activities”.
The Director disclosed that in order to support individuals living with disabilities, the Lagos State Office for Disability Affairs (LASODA) was established to cater for them and protect their rights under the Constitution.
She listed some of the Child’s Right Laws of Lagos State to include; Right to survival, Right to parental care, Right to health services, Right to freedom of movement, Right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion, Right to freedom of association and peaceful assembly among others.
Salami implored parents and guardians of children with disability to always give them the necessary encouragement by focusing on their capabilities so that they can be useful to themselves and the society at large.