Nwaka Outlines Reasons Abia Must Domesticate Senior Citizens Act

Says Proper Policy Framework Needed to Cater for Senior Citizens, Safeguard Their Rights

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The Co-chair/Facilitator of the National Senior Citizens Centre(NSCC), Abia State Stakeholders Consultative Forum on Ageing Abia State has called on the state government to domesticate the Senior Citizens Act, 2018.

Mazi Ottih Nwaka made the call in Umuahia during the commemoration of the second edition of the National Day of Older Persons.

He stated that domesticating the Senior Citizens Act, enacted by the National Assembly and signed into law in January 2018 by then President Muhammadu Buhari, would provide the proper policy framework for Abia to cater for its senior citizens.

The Co-chair said that the NSCC, Abia State Stakeholders Consultative Forum on Ageing was desirous of having having the the Abia State Senior Citizens bill passed into law by the State House of Assembly without further delay.

“We must do this for posterity and for the generation unborn,” Nwaka said, adding that older people need special care .

According to him, it has become pertinent that Abia should get Senior Citizens Act as it would, among other things address the “unique challenges” associated with ageing.

He said: “The law shall address issues faced by old persons, ranging from physical, social and psychological challenges due to their livelihood, chronic health conditions, lack of adequate care and support.

“The law shall help our older persons maintain independence, get professional advice on self-care strategies; improve poor communication and coordination of services and improve lack of information on services such as care pathways.

“The law shall contribute to a shift in societal attitudes and practices by raising awareness and setting standards for the treatment of older people, ultimately fostering a culture of respect and care for our older population”.

Mazi Nwaka: Senior citizens have peculiar challenges, need special care.

 

Nwaka stated that the Abia Stakeholders Consultative Forum on Ageing carried out a review of its activities and progress on October 25, 2023, adding that NSCC has prepared the forum to serve and manage the older persons in their various states of the federation.

“We are here to serve Abia State,” he asserted, pointing out the need to treat the Senior citizens with special love and care.

The NSCC Facilitator in Abia stressed the need for the domestication and application of the UN Convention on the rights of older people be as it would “advance and ensure that as we grow older, our rights and well-being are protected and respected”

He noted that the rights of older persons are well elaborated in the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and other declarations.

“There is the need to pass this act and domesticate it in Abia State to ensure the application of universal standards to this particular groups,” Nwaka stated.

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