Physically-challenged athletes on Wednesday staged a protest in Surulere area of Lagos State, declaring that all members exempted from the National Sports Festival must be included, arguing that they were being marginalized
Penpushing reports that, the protest caused a traffic gridlock, forcing many people to abandon commercial vehicles and trek long distances to beat the traffic, especially along Funso Williams Avenue, while number of motorists were kept on the roads for hours
The protesters who also gathered at the National Stadium insisted that all the Para sports exempted from the festival must be included, while one of them identified as Joyce Otun, emphasized that it was necessary they staged the protest as members of her group were being marginalised due to their disabilities.
Penpushing further reports that, the para-athlete, said only three of them have been enlisted in the National Sports Festival, stressing that, if they would not include all the physically-challenged athletes the authorities should forget about the festival this year.
“We are protesting because they deny us our rights, the National Sports Festival must include all Para Sports and none should be denied participation. Only three of our sports have been enlisted in the National Sports Festival. If they would not include all our sports they should forget about the festival this year. We are not ready to stop, we will continue this protest until they heed our call’, she said.
Penpushing also reports that, in the same vein, another protester who pleaded anonymity in his reaction pointed out that the disabled sports persons were being ignored, hence their grievances, and called on the government on need to do the right thing
“We want the government to do the right thing. They should give us what rightfully belongs to us, that is what we are fighting for by this protest. If they would not grant us our request, we will be here for the next 24 hours until our sports are included in the National Sports Festival. We are not being treated right by the government in spite of the fact that we win majority of the medals for the country,” he said.
Penpushing reports that, team of the Lagos State Rapid Response Squad (RRS) of the police were later deployed to the area, while the protesting athletes, thereafter, left the scene, a situation which brought normalcy to the roads
FOOTNOTE: You want to share story with us? You want to advertise with us? You need publicity for product, or service, or event? Contact us on WhatsApp +2348073463653 or email [email protected]