On 7th of July, 2021, the Coalition of Association for Leadership, Peace, Empowerment & Development (CALPED) in collaboration with the Joint National Association of Persons with Disability (JONAPWD) organized a one day Quarterly Strategic Review meeting with the Disability Community in Kaduna State. This is towards addressing barriers of social and economic exclusion that hinder opportunities for the Disability Community to participate meaningfully in governance and socio-economic development. The meeting availed the community the opportunity to identify issues of concern, make recommendations and agree on next steps.
The participants were drawn from the six clusters under the umbrella of Joint National Association of Persons with Disability (JONAPWD), representatives of the Rehabilitation Board, State Operations Coordination Unit (SOCU), civil society and media partners. In the course of the meeting some key observations were raised and resolutions agreed.
The Disability Community commended the State government’s effort towards uplifting the lives and livelihoods of Kaduna residents especially those from poor and vulnerable households.
Over four months after Kaduna state government announced plans to introduce a disability benefit programme, as part of its social protection policy implementation plan that will complement other initiatives the government is currently implementing in the state. The Disability Community has taken a bold step to commence collaborations with all relevant MDAs driving the Social Protection Policy in Kaduna State.
The State Operations Coordinating Unit (SOCU) is presently using the Community Based Targeting (CBT) process in generating the database of the Poor and Vulnerable Households which is informing the State Social Register in the state.
The Disability Community accused some of the community stakeholders of compromising the efforts put by the State government, during the abridged version of Community Based Targeting (CBT) process, to have a fair and transparent process as they were not inclusively and adequately captured in the State Social Register.
During the CBT process, community stakeholders need to be adequately sensitized to prioritize the disability community, as most times they only focus on the physically challenged.
Presently, both state and non-state actors are mining from the Social Register to target beneficiaries of their various interventions. This has improved the quality of targeting as verifiable beneficiaries are the ones benefiting from interventions in the state.
The Disability Community have been identified as one of the most coordinated vulnerable groups in Kaduna State as they have functional structures across the 23 LGAs.
The Disability Community confirmed that violation of their rights begin from their families before any other person in the society.
Out of the 524,424 poor and vulnerable households captured by the State Operations Coordinating Unit (SOCU) only 45,311, that is 8.6%, are from the Disability Community.
Prior to the passage of the Budget, CALPED supported the community to make submissions to inform the 2021 Kaduna State Budget.
The Disability Community reviewed their prioritized needs submitted during the 2021 budget formulation and appropriation process.
None of the prioritized needs and recommendations as submitted were captured in the 2021 approved budget.
The Disability Community decried not being adequately carried along in the process of drafting and legislating the Disability bill.
The Disability Community appreciated SOCU for participating in the meeting, as it shows the commitment of the government to ensure no one is left behind.
The Disability Community is worried about the rising state of insecurity, particularly as it is affecting their members without any special interventions to cater for the victims.
The Quarterly Strategic Review Meeting with the Disability Community is the first of its kind as it provides the community with opportunities to dialogue and collaborate with relevant stakeholders in the state social protection system by taking ownership of the implementation process.
The State Operations Coordinating Unit (SOCU) made commitments to partner with the Disability Community in generating the State Social Register to ensure PWDs are inclusively captured in the State Register.
The Disability Community will reach out to its members across the 23 local government areas to sensitize them on the social protection policy and Community Based Targeting process being carried out by SOCU.
Civil society partners to support the community in the advocacy visit to key MDAs driving the Social Protection Policy in Kaduna State.
The Disability Community is set to engage key relevant MDAs on the 2022 budget formulation process to ensure their prioritized needs are adequately captured.
The partners will organize a two day budget advocacy and tracking training that will enable the Disability Community to effectively advocate, track and report on all capital projects that affect PWDs across the 23 LGAs in Kaduna State.
The Disability Community will pay a advocacy visit to the Kaduna Social Investment Office (KADSIO), State Operations Coordination Unit (SOCU) and State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA) to lobby for special interventions for their members who fall victim to insecurity.
CALPED will continue to support the community to organize the Quarterly Strategic Review meeting to dialogue with key stakeholders on issues that affect the Disability Community and proffer solutions to them.
Head of Gender & Social Inclusion, Coalition of Associations for Leadership, Peace, Empowerment & Development (CALPED).
Suleiman Abdulazeez Abacha
Joint National Association of Persons with Disability (JONAPWD)