Stakeholders of Kogi State chapter of All Progressives Congress, APC, have declared to support the emergence of Hon. Adukwu Emmanuel, a person with disabilities, as the representative of Ankpa 1 State constituency of Kogi at the 2023 general elections.
The Stakeholders who stormed the national Secretariat of APC to drum up support for Hon. Emmanuel, had governor Yahaya Bello, to thank for backing his emergence as the party’s Candidate at the primary election recently conducted.
Addressing journalists, Hon. Ibrahim Daniel Arumeh, the Chairman Kogi State disability board, commended the governor for assenting to the disability bill and making inclusion of persons with disabilities in mainstream politics a reality in the State.
“Today, persons with disabilities we have a voice and coming down to Kogi State, the executive governor of Kogi State has as well domesticated the disability law in Kogi State and today, being a man on a wheelchair I live a free life like any other person in the society.
“Today, so many of us, that have been so neglected by the society, APC as a party has given us a voice and Alhaji Yahaya Bello, governor of Kogi State, whom we are expecting to become the next president after Muhammadu Buhari, has also given us the same voice in Kogi State. The only man who has a person with disabilities as a national coordinator in his campaign council in the history of all the people aspiring for the seat of the Presidency.
“He is the only governor who has given an automatic ticket. He pleaded with the able-bodied counterpart who were contending with a person with disabilities, he pleaded with them and they understood the reason why a person with disabilities should be allowed to be in the lawmaking business and today we have a disabled man from Kogi State who is vying from Ankpa 1 constituency who’s going to represent people with disabilities and his constituency in the State Assembly,” he stated.
Also speaking, one of the leaders of the party in Kogi State, Hon. Bankole noted that it was the first time in the history of Nigerian politics that a person with disabilities will be picking the ticket of a major political party.
Hon Bankole said, “At the last convention, the party gave us free Nomination for us to ensure that our people are included in the process. But governor Yahaya Bello took it upon himself to give us this Candidate to be part of that process and today all of us are happy and, we’re here to celebrate and to show our support to the governor for giving this to us. And we’re saying enough of marginalisation, disability is not a crime, it is our right we have to be included in all processes and that is why I’m happy it happens in my tenure.”
In his remarks, the APC Candidate for Ankpa 1 State constituency of Kogi, Hon. Adukwu Emmanuel, lauded the leadership of Governor Yahaya Bello for supporting the less privileged and the disadvantaged members of the society.
Hon Emmanuel will be replacing the current deputy speaker of the State Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ahmed Ahmed, who incidentally hails from Ankpa 1 State constituency.
Declaring his support for Emmanuel, the outgoing deputy speaker revealed that he initiated the bill to liberate and ensure total inclusion of persons with disabilities, adding that he was happy that his constituency will be the first to benefit from his legislative exploits.
Rt. Hon. Ahmed said, “I want to thank his Excellency governor Yahaya Bello, for lobbying through this channel to ensure that persons with disabilities to achieve this far in this State and Nigeria at large.
“I also want to thank our Party, APC for making it possible for our own brother a man living with disabilities to fly the party’s ticket. it’s a great joy for us today and for myself a member representing Akpa 1 constituency today because by the special grace of God he’s going to take over from me in 2023. I want Nigerians to see that Alhaji Yahaya Bello is for all, a man that is doing practically in terms of inclusion of people with disabilities, he has been doing that look at Arame the state chairman of people living with disabilities.
“I proposed this bill sometimes three years ago and with the love that Yahaya Bello has for the people living with disabilities he assented to the bill and today it’s a law. What I laboured for has come to today come to reality and I have been doing that, I’ve been building houses for people with disabilities in my constituencies and I’m so happy today that my constituency is going to be the first to benefit from my labour and I’m grateful to God, the party and governor Yahaha Bello.”