Saturday, April 19, 2014

Treat us fairly, gold winning Paralympian tells Government

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Government should treat us the same able bodied sports men are treated, Gloria Anozie says.

A gold medalist at the just concluded Paralympics, Gloria Anozie, has asked the Nigerian government to stop playing games with the welfare of the disabled.

Ms. Anozie said this on Saturday in London at a reception held in honour of the Nigerian contingent to the London 2012 Paralympics, hosted by the Nigerian High Commissioner to the UK, Dalhatu Tafida.

“We have never disappointed Nigeria in any of our outings. It is time government stopped paying lip service to the welfare of those with disabilities and treat us as equals with our able-bodied counterparts,’’ Ms. Anozie said.

She condemned the non-chalant attitude with which the government treats special sports. The government must brace up and quit treating those living with disabilities in a manner lesser than the treatment accorded to the non-physically challenged, she said.

Ms. Anozie, who won a gold medal at the women’s +82.50 kg category of power lifting, asked the government to show adequate commitment in the development of the special sports.

The London 2012 Paralympics games rounded off on Sunday, with the Nigerian representatives winning a total of 13 medals.

Ms. Anozie’s indictment shows that the physically challenged succeeded at the competition from personal gusto and shear hard-work, not with government’s support.

Four of the Nigerian athletes at the Paralympics broke world records in the power lifting events. They are Esther Onyema, Joy Oyelapo, Yakubu Adesokan and Shade Ayo.

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