by Alabi Usman
The Lagos state governor, Akinwunmi Ambode on Tuesday inaugurated the governing board of the Office for Disability Affairs to manage a N500 million Disability Trust Fund.
The governor expressed optimism that the fund would aid people living with disabilities in Lagos State to realize their dreams and live a more comfortable life. Ambode said this at the Lagos house, Alausa, Ikeja, while inaugurating the board.
Describing the development as another milestone in his administration’s commitment to run an all inclusive government, the governor said the board would on behalf of the state government manage the affairs of the people living with disabilities by issuing guidelines for their education, social development and welfare.
The governor explained that “The Board will also manage the Disability Trust Fund. In fulfillment of the promise I made on May 29th, 2016, this Fund has in its kitty today, N500 million with a marching order to solicit from the public and other charitable organizations, additional support for its objectives
“We could not have done otherwise, given the array of people with disabilities who possess requisite qualification, experience and character
Ambode assured that notwithstanding the N500 million Trust Funds, people living with disabilities are still eligible to access the N25 billion Employment Trust Fund (ETF)
The governor however tasked members of the board to ensure that the principles of transparency, accountability, inclusiveness and fairness are observed in administering the Fund and coordinating all affairs concerning people living with disabilities.
Members of the board includes Olabodunrin Waheed who is the Chairman of the Board of Trustee, Office for Disability Affairs, Leila Omawumi Atake, Rose Ekaete Mordi, Abdulwahab Matepo, Adedoyin Beyioku-Alase, Adebayo Adebukola Shehu, Biola Liadi, Bada Emmanuel Oladipupo, Hakeem Muri-Okunola, representing the Ministry of Youth and Social Development; and Babatunde Awelenje.
Ymonitor would continue to track this issue and discover more about the Fund in relation to people with disabilities.
The problem with funds like this is that they are not publicized, so most of the people who are supposed to benefit from it are ignorant of its existence. This also bring to the fore the issue of transparency and accountability, these are the issues we would be looking at while tracking this issue.