(Executive Secretary, National Commission for Persons with Disabilities)

The Executive Secretary of the National Commission for Persons with
Disabilities, PLWDs, James Lalu is the third child of a businessman,
evangelist turned politician, Da David Chet’an Lalu and his wife,
Laitu David Lalu.

Both parents, natives of Mangun in Mangu LGA of Plateau State, had
settled in Dokan Tofa, Shendam LGA had sired 9 children.

From a very tender age, the young Lalu went in the aggressive pursuit of
knowledge. He attended RCM Primary School, Dokan Tofa running through
Pankshin Community Secondary School, Jing, College of Education,
Gindiri culminating at the University of Jos, where currently; he is a
doctoral student. The world of silence has never been an inhibition;
rather, through sheer dexterity has been able to conquer his world to
recognition.

He has continually asserted: “A person with a disorder in Nigeria does
not need pity but love. If you uphold his rights and assert his
equality, it is a roadmap to addressing all other needs. A positive
attitude will lessen the burden of disability in society. To him,
life is all about sacrifice to humanity, insisting that sacrifice may
never attract accolades, but God rewards and sees everything.”

That is why when he looks back, it is gratitude that envelops him to
give God glory for what he has done in his life; even as he remarks
that he remains eternally grateful to Governor Simon Bako Lalong for
the ‘double enthronement’, the Minister of Humanitarian Affairs,
Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouq, a woman he describes as detribalized and
Senator Osita Izunaso for even making it easier for him.

He sees his appointment as the Executive Secretary in line with the
Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act
2019, as an act of God. He acknowledges the fact that several times,
the plight of PLWDs who suffer discrimination in different spheres of
society has the need for a commission to respond to those
concerns. The search for some Nigerians to work for the enthronement
of the spirit of the act saw to his appointment.

He did the same at the Plateau State Disability Rights Commission before
his elevation to the national level. But before becoming its chairman,
he had served as Senior Special Assistant from 2007-2013. He became a
member of the commission from 2013-2015 and subsequently its chairman
in 2017 completing it in 2020 when he was called to higher duties the same
year; where there is an increase in responsibility. Perhaps it is the reason
why his passion and commitment to disability-inclusive development
remains the same, even though the field has increased.

James David Lalu is also a member of the Governor Mai Mala Buni-led
APC National Caretaker Committee. He, like the other members, have been
on the committee since June 25, 2020; and indeed has proven not to be a
bad nomination.


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