Nigeria @62: Plights of People with Disabilities

The Plight of People with Disabilities Nigeria @ 62

I’m not happy!!!
How could this be?
How is it that I love and I am loyal to you but you don’t have any regard for me?
How is it that I see you as part of me but you keep denying me?

I’ve loved you with everything yet you want me out of your face.
You never accepted me!
Once I take a step to get close to you, you take a thousand steps away from me.
For so long, I waited patiently, I put up with every humiliation that you made me go through.
You made me hide, I wanted to be out in the world, in your world. To be seen as one of you but you refused to give me that chance.
I waited patiently with the hope that if I gave you time and chance, you’d finally love and accept me.

When I got tired of waiting, I got tired of hiding.
I got tired of feeling useless, worthless and of no value.
I got a vision
I looked carefully and attentively and I realized that I am not worthless, nor am I useless. I realized that in me, lies wholesome greatness.
I can feel it, I can see it, that I am actually capable of so many things.
I was only blind to my reality in the past. Your denial of me blinded me.
When I realized who I was. I stopped hiding and brought myself to the spotlight for you to see. I started proving myself.
I tried to let you see that there is no reason to hide me. I wanted you to know that I am capable, very much capable of doing anything. All I need is a chance from you.

Instead of giving me a chance to live, you have chosen to torment me.
Without empathy, you have created countless obstacles in my way.
You rejoice in my pains, my agony, my affliction, my discomfort, my anguish.
Or, how else could I qualify this nonchalant attitude of yours towards me?
You are like priceless gold to me, but to you, I am not as worthy as a trashcan.

NIGERIA, up till now, why have you refused to accept that PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES are part of you?
Why are you telling us in all ways that you don’t want us to be seen in your world?
Why did you refuse to make provisions for us as part of your citizens?

How do I, a wheelchair user, have access to all your buildings which were built with staircases and no ramps or elevators?
How do I, a visually impaired and wheelchair user, easily make use of your rough roads?

THERE ARE NO PROVISIONS TO MAKE ME LIVE STRESS-FREE.
As a Nigerian student living with a disability, Nigeria has no provision for me.
All buildings in my school have staircases with no ramps.
I have to depend on other people to get up and down, yet you want me to celebrate independence day?
There are no accessible public restrooms in schools and other public places.
I have to go to classes on empty stomach in order to avoid having to use the restroom, yet you want me to celebrate independence day?

Your rough roads injure me and give me body pains, yet you want me to celebrate independence day?
You do not allow me to be as independent on my own as I wish to, yet you want me to celebrate independence day?
I am not regarded as a first-class citizen, yet you want me to celebrate independence day?
In the light of all these predicaments, I have come to the conclusion that your independence is nothing but a thorn in my own flesh.

Am I asking for too much?
I want acceptance. I want true independence.
I want to live freely and fulfilling.
I want to be taken into consideration in things that are of public interest, as a citizen of my country.

Nigeria @ 62
Thoughts of a concerned PWD.
© Pweetieshona

Blessing Omowumi

Blessing Omowumi (Shona) is a versatile content creator and copywriter with five years of experience working as a freelancer. She also studied Nutrition and Dietetics at The FedPolytechnic Ede. Follow & Connect on Instagram @g3shona

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