Making Policy Changes on the Domestic Level: a Critical Exposition into the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (Essays)

WillFran Consulting and the World Institute on Disability put out a call for papers on the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities, eligible to undergraduates and recent graduates of the pre-NYSC program in Nigeria. We are proud to highlight the incredible work of 3 writers: Ọbáfẹ́mi Thanni David, Matthew Adebisi Adebyo, and Oludayo Olufowobi.

The 3 papers, in addition to author biographies, photos, and virtual event information are available on this webpage for public viewing. The writers, World Institute on Disability, WillFran Consulting, and esteemed panelists will participate in a virtual Workshop on Persons with Disabilities on Monday, November 10, 2020.


  • Disability Inclusive Disaster Risk Reduction & Climate Resilience
  • Accessibility Solutions
  • Digital Systems and Tools
  • Human Rights
  • Health and Wellbeing
  • Inclusive and Equitable Quality Education
  • Peacebuilding and Security

About the authors

Matthew Adebisi Adebyo

Matthew Adebisi Adebyo, a Black man, wearing a suit and tie, posing in front of a bright orange curtain.

Matthew Adebisi Adebyo is a Final Year student of Law at Obafemi Awolowo university lle-Ife, who also has a passion for Human Rights. He has participated in several workshops that advocate the rights of the disabled and less privileged within his university community. 

He has equally interned with several human rights law firms such as Bola Ajibola & co. He conducted several research tasks on human rights violations in Nigeria and NGOs’ role in curbing it.

Matthew served as the General Secretary of Drug-Free Club OAU, the Provost of Magna Curia Chambers,  President of the Ogbomoso Students Union OAU Chapter, and member of the lfe Model United Nations Conference.

Oludayo Olufowobi

Oludayo Olufowobi, a Black man, wearing a teal suit. He is sitting in his wheelchair in front of a white wall.

Oludayo Olufowobi is a penultimate law student at the University of Lagos and a budding legal researcher interested in intersections between law, finance, and technology. He is the deputy editor-in-chief of the Unilag Law Review. He is passionate about international law, human rights issues, and proffering ingenious solutions to world issues. He advocates for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and achieving an inclusive, sustainable society. He is also passionate about being a global change maker 

Ọbáfẹ́mi Thanni David

Portrait photo of Obafemi Thanni, a Black man wearing a black turtleneck sweater.

Ọbáfẹ́mi Thanni is a penultimate year undergraduate of the Faculty of Law, University of Ibadan. He is also is a writer whose poetry was shortlisted for the 2019 Christopher Okigbo Poetry Prize.

Full papers available for download

Making policy changes on the domestic level: A critical exposition of the CRPD 

By Oludayo Olufowobi 

Abstract:  One billion people, that is, 15% of the world’s population, experience some form of disability. Persons with disabilities are more susceptible to experiencing more adverse socio-economic or living conditions than others without any disability. It is due to discriminatory practices in our society and deficits in inclusive infrastructure. It is laudable that Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (CRPD) has promising provisions, but enforcement is abysmal. It is on this premise that the writer explores the peculiarities of the Nigerian situation, taking into account its plaguing insecurity, infrastructural deficits, and lapses in the protection of the human rights of persons with disabilities. This paper titled; “Making policy changes on the domestic level: A critical exposition of the CRPD”, addresses how Nigeria can realize the objectives of CRPD through a juxtaposition of the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition Act) 2018 towards this end; x-raying Lagos State and its Disability Bill, exploring strategies for better data collection on persons with disabilities and mainstreaming it into national policies; improving accessibility solutions, leveraging digital systems, and tools peculiarly in its educational systems for better inclusivity, disaster mitigation strategies taking into cognizance persons with disabilities, protection of their inalienable rights, and their better economic participation as a tool for national economic recovery. Noting the debilitating effects of COVID and the singular plight of persons with disabilities, there is a focus on inclusive response strategies in the areas of health, education and employment towards a sustainable future for all. 

Links to download the full paper

Download Accessible PDF of paper by Oludayo Olufowobi  | Download Word Document of paper by Oludayo Olufowobi

Domestic Social Policy On Persons With Disabilities: Exploring The Gap Between Ideals And Implementation

By Ọbáfẹ́mi Thanni David

Despite the ratification of the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities by Nigeria, little has been done beyond the lofty lettering of the national law on persons living with disabilities. The lettering of the Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act which gained the force of law in 2019, contains provisions yet to be implemented. The Act equally leaves areas of vital concern unlegislated. These areas have been highlighted by the Convention as concerns of universal design, human rights, disaster risk reduction, health and well-being and security to name a few. These highlighted concerns have domestic implications with regards to gender and age considerations, floods and oil spills, terrorism and internal displacement and polio and post-polio syndrome among others. 

This paper recognizes the gap between legislation and implementation as a result of attitudinal barriers and deficiencies in social policy. In exploring this gap and bringing to fore solutions which close said gap, the paper compares the Convention’s requirements, the reality of persons with disabilities in other party states and domestic laws. This juxtaposition arrives at a strengthening of social policy as a mechanism for solving concerns of persons with disabilities, through a compliance with international standards, continuity of policies despite regime changes and a diversification of policies to areas of digital solutions, accessibility and information and communication technology. 

Links to download the full paper

Download Accessible PDF of paper by Ọbáfẹ́mi Thanni David | Download Word Document of paper by Ọbáfẹ́mi Thanni David

Persons with Disabilities and their Rights

By Matthew Adebisi Adebyo

The Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities does not define disability but provides a broad description intended to be widely inclusive. The Convention on the Right of Person with Disabilities establishes in Article 1 that ‘persons with disabilities’ include ‘those who have long-term physical, mental, intellectual or sensory impairments which in interaction with various barriers may hinder their full and effective participation in society on an equal basis with others. 

The Universal Declaration enshrines rights that many of us take for granted: the right to education, to liberty, to be recognized as a person before the law, to be free from torture and cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment. But too often around the world, people with disabilities continue to be denied the chance to go to school or are confined to institutions, secluded, and restrained. Although often adopted under the false belief they are needed for protection or care, some laws and policies of countries that have otherwise made strides in human rights still discriminate against people with disabilities.

Links to download the full paper

Download Accessible PDF of paper by Matthew Adebisi Adebyo|Download Word Document of paper by Matthew Adebisi Adebyo

Event Information


1) Omotoke Olowo, The Autism Awareness Foundation (TAAF)

2) Emmanuella Akinola, Rehabilitation Technology Expert, Access Technology

3) Marsha Saxton (Ph.D.), Director of Research, World Institute on Disability

4) Folawiyo Kareem Olajoku (Ph.D.), Sustainable Development Practitioner, FKO Investments and Research

5) Victor Ekwueme, ERP Developer/Data Scientist

6) Tonye Faloughi Ekezie, Founder Simone’s Oasis (the portfolio creates content to educate, inspire, entertain & raise awareness on Downs Syndrome and other conditions)

7) Damilola Afolayan, Disability Right Advocate, Royal Gem Initiative (YALI Fellow)

8) Theophilus Odaudu, Program Officer, Disability Rights Fund

9) Azubike Onuora-Oguno (Ph.D.), Senior Lecturer, University of Ilorin, Faculty of Law (Visiting Research Fellow, York University – Osgoode Hall Law School)


Link to download full agenda as an accessible PDF

If you are having technical issues or accessibility issues on this site, email

Main content end