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How Nigerians can thrive with diversity and inclusivity

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Goal 16 of the United Nation Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which is Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions is targeted at making people living with a form of disability to be respected. Diversity is the mix of everyone, including people living with a form of disability.

Inclusivity is the ability to respect the opinions of and infuse the people living with disability in the workplace, at church/mosque, at the market or in educational institutions.

Diversity and inclusion make us better, smarter and innovative. Diversity gives us a great competitive advantage in the workplace. Visible and fair employment of people living with a form of disability is crucial.

The workplace has to be fairer and smarter where all can contribute their skills, ideas and talents and yet their dignity and respect is observed properly (this is and must remain a priority). We must also make sure there is no form of discrimination in the educational enrolment scheme against people living with a disability.

Diversity and inclusivity at a rapid rate must be a down-to-top approach. Diversity and inclusivity of all irrespective of their race, gender, religion, disability, status and ethnicity must be second nature for all of us now. I want the inclusion of people living with a disability because all humans are created equal with the same right of liberty, life and pursuit of happiness. People living with a form of disability should and must have inclusion/participatory rights in their daily lives in the places where they stay.

In the drive for diversity and inclusivity, I advocate for these:

1. Provision of assistive technology for people with a form of disability (e.g. provision of ramps in public buildings).

2. Inclusive education: All people living with a form of disability have full rights to quality education at all levels of education.

3. Open and equal access of people living with a form of disability to facilities, jobs, markets, education, employment, goods and services.

4. Promotion and protection of the human rights of people living with a disability.

5. Full participation of people living with a form of disability in civil rights activities and processes.

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Daniel Onyi- Eboh
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