Disability Rights: Nat’l Assembly Reacts to Rights Group, HURMA’s Petition, Summons KFC Over Discrimination – Rights Monitors

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In response to the recent petition by the Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA Global Resource Initiative), over alleged act of discrimination and Injustice on Mr. Debola Daniel, a wheelchair user physically challenged son of former governor of Ogun State, Sen. Gbenga Daniel, the National Assembly has summoned KFC management in a move to investigate the alleged breach of Disability Act

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The House of Representatives Committee on Disabilities has invited the management of Kentucky Fried Chicken, KFC, over the alleged unfair treatment of a person living with a disability, Adebola Daniel.

The committee’s chairman, Bashiru Ayinla, made this known while briefing House of Representatives correspondents at the National Assembly Complex, Abuja on Tuesday, April 2nd, 2024

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Ayinla, a member of the All Progressives Congress representing Oshodi/Isolo-1 Federal Constituency, Lagos State, said the committee would ensure anyone found culpable of breaching the Disability Act is punished by the provisions of the law.

Adebola, a wheelchair user was reportedly prevented from entering the KFC outlet at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos last week with the manager quoted as saying, “No wheelchair allowed.”

Speaking on the ill-treatment, the lawmaker said, “We have invited KFC and there will be an investigation which will be based on House rules.”

This treatment is unacceptable and goes against the principles of inclusivity and respect and it is a violation of the Disability Act.”

stressing that denying access to the physically challenged persons to public spaces “undermines ongoing efforts to implement the Disability Act.”

He continued, “The case of Mr Adebola Daniel is one in millions of other unreported cases of such abuses and injustices against people with disabilities. This will no longer be tolerated by the governments at all levels. Any establishments within the shore of our country irrespective of owners’ status should take note. Enough is enough!

“The Discrimination against People with Disabilities Prohibition Act 2018, passed by the National Assembly, aims to safeguard the rights of persons with disabilities.

“However, compliance with this Act has been lacking since the grace period ended in January.”

Ayinla pledged readiness of the committee to engage with communities to kick-start the full implementation of the Disability Act, adding that “Key provisions such as access to public buildings, employment quotas, and welfare promotion for persons with disabilities must be enforced to ensure their rights are upheld.”

In the petition sent to both the President of the Senate and Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Executive Director of Human Rights Monitoring Agenda HURMA, Comrade Buna Olaitan Isiak stated that
the appalling incident at the KFC eatery in the International Murtala Muhammed Airport, Lagos State, where Mr. Debola Daniel was denied access in the presence of his wife, siblings, and friend, underscores a pervasive culture of discrimination against the physically challenged across societal divides.

“This act of dehumanization reflects the inadequacy of existing policies and the alarming lack of awareness surrounding the rights of the physically challenged”

“Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA) vehemently condemns the injustice inflicted upon Mr. Debola Daniel. We commend his courage, composure, and unwavering resolve in spearheading a movement for justice, inclusivity, and equity for the physically challenged. HURMA stands in solidarity with him, committed to seeing this struggle through to its rightful conclusion.”

In the petition titled:
“Urgent Call to End Discrimination Against Debola Daniel and the Physically Challenged Community”

The Human Rights Monitoring Agenda (HURMA) make the following demands:

“1. Immediate relocation of KFC from the International Murtala Muhammed Airport, as it symbolizes oppression and dehumanization against the physically challenged. Such organizations should not operate in any of our airports, domestic or international.

  1. Prosecution of the individuals directly involved in the discriminatory actions, in accordance with the stipulated penalties outlined in laws against discrimination of the physically challenged.
  2. Effective review and strict enforcement of policies aimed at preventing discrimination against the physically challenged, with oversight by law enforcement agencies.
  3. Compensation to Mr. Debola Daniel by KFC for the primitive act of dehumanization.
  4. Establishment of an immediate and transparent probe panel to investigate the matter thoroughly. This should lead to a comprehensive review of all policies pertaining to discrimination against the physically challenged and their rigorous enforcement”.

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