PIN urges FG, others to promote digital inclusion of youths with disabilities

Paradigm Initiative (PIN) has urged the federal government and other African countries to promote the digital inclusion of youths with disabilities.

A report released on Friday by PIN, a few days after the annual International Youth Day on August 12, revealed that several youth with disabilities, especially those from underprivileged communities, are digitally excluded in Africa, which violates their fundamental rights.

The association, a leading pan-African social enterprise that advocates digital rights for under-served youths, disclosed that young people with disabilities continue to face barriers, including discrimination, as they lack assistive technologies and have limitations in accessing the internet.

PIN stressed that underprivileged communities are usually at a loss regarding Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) irrespective of government efforts to comply with international human rights treaties such as the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR) and the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights.

The United Nations statistics also revealed that Africa is populated with more than 80 million disabled people, half of whom are youths.

However, the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights.Agenda 2063 sees young people in Africa as a crucial population group in enhancing socio-economic solutions in Africa.

Therefore, PIN urged the African government to provide accessible internet through online education, communication, entertainment, and civic participation to disabled youths to improve their inclusion in technology and achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, and “leave no one behind”.

Also, it advised African governments to improve policy frameworks to assist youth with disabilities in accessing digital technologies, ensure digital literacy programmes in schools and provide the necessary resources to support the implementation of disability-inclusive policies.

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