Reps summon KFC over discrimination against ex-Gov Gbenga Daniel’s son

The House of Representatives Committee on Disabilities has summoned the management of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) over allegations of discriminatory treatment meted to Adebola Daniel, a person living with a disability and son of a former Governor of Ogun State, Senator Gbenga Daniel.

Chairman of the committee, Bashiru Ayinla, announced the decision while briefing journalists at the National Assembly Complex, Abuja, on Tuesday.

Ayinla, representing Oshodi/Isolo-1 Federal Constituency, Lagos State, vowed that the committee would ensure that any violation of the Disability Act is met with appropriate punishment under the law.

The incident in question occurred at the KFC outlet within the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, where the younger Daniel – a wheelchair user – was reportedly denied entry with the manager allegedly declaring “No wheelchair allowed.”

Expressing dismay, Ayinla stated the gravity of the situation, saying: “The discriminatory incident sheds light on the challenges being faced by individuals with disabilities in Nigeria. This treatment is unacceptable and is a violation of the Disability Act.

“We have invited KFC and there will be an investigation which will be based on House rules.

“The discriminatory incident, highlighted by Mr. Daniel’s public account, sheds light on the challenges being faced by individuals with disabilities in Nigeria.

“Mr Daniel, a wheelchair user, faced humiliation when he was refused entry to the KFC outlet, with the manager stating, ‘No wheelchair allowed.’ This treatment is unacceptable and goes against the principles of inclusivity and respect and it is a violation of the Disability Act.”

The Committee Chairman pointed out the importance of enforcing the Disability Act to safeguard the rights of persons with disabilities, stressing the need for compliance with its provisions, particularly regarding access to public spaces and employment quotas.

According to him, the son of the ex-governor and serving senator, Daniel, recounted his experience at the KFC outlet of the airport in a series of tweets posted on Wednesday via his X handle, @DebolaDaniel, saying: “Being disabled often rolls over my spirit, leaving behind a trail of shattered dignity and forgotten humanity. Nowhere, more so, than in Nigeria.”

Ayinla added that the denial of individuals with disabilities access to public spaces is not only disrespectful “but also undermines ongoing efforts to implement the Disability Act”.

“The case of Mr. Adebola Daniel is one in millions of other unreported cases of such abuses and injustices against people with disabilities.

“This will no longer be tolerated by the governments at all levels. Any establishments within the shore of our country irrespective of owners’ status should take note. Enough is enough!

“The Discrimination against People with Disabilities Prohibition Act 2018, passed by the National Assembly, aims to safeguard the rights of persons with disabilities.

“However, compliance with this Act has been lacking since the grace period ended in January,” the lawmaker added.

Ayinla pledged the readiness of the House to engage with communities to kick-start the full implementation of the Disability Act, stating that “key provisions such as access to public buildings, employment quotas, and welfare promotion for persons with disabilities must be enforced to ensure their rights are upheld”.

He also urged state governments to domesticate the Disability Act.

Addressing concerns about the committee’s motives, Ayinla affirmed that the lawmakers’ action was not influenced by the status of the individual involved but rather by the broader imperative of promoting inclusivity and upholding the rights of all citizens, regardless of their physical abilities.

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