People go to all lengths to make sense of the world around them: spiritualism; social-scientific theories; applied science; and religion. At Equality Reporters, we choose a social-scientific method—the Normative Media Theories by Wilbur Schramm and co.
In sum, the theory says the media reflects the coloration of its environment.
Nothing has ever been truer in Nigeria’s media space. The social-political injustice, irresponsibility, and impunity that envelope the nation prevail in its media, too. And minorities—including people with disabilities, women, and the poor—bear the consequences. They have no voice in the media. When these minorities attempt to voice out, the media owners consider the grouses, and issues affecting the minorities, as afterthoughts. It the same way all things about inclusion becomes an after-thought in the nation’s policies and laws.
But the man dies, according to Nobel Laureate and Prof. Wole Soyinka, who keeps quiet in the face of tyranny.
Nigeria’s PWDs, and other minorities, are not keeping quiet. But they need some form of amplification.
And ER has stepped in.
ER is an online journalism platform, a not-for-profit project, which mass-mediates information on policy formulation and implementation between policymakers and beneficiaries. It focuses issues and policies affecting disabilities in Nigeria.
With fair reporting, deep analyses, and compelling storytelling, ER seeks inclusion, equality, and diversity in Nigeria.
Most importantly, ER is committing to an over-arching aim: to make inclusion of PWDs part of Nigeria’s consciousness at the policy level—not an afterthought or some special consideration.
A nation that believes in democracy should not—and must not— continue to keep retrofitting inclusion in its laws and policies on education, health, justice, economy, politics, and other aspects of nationhood.