This paper sets out to investigate access to COVID-19 updates by people with disabilities in Nigeria, and the instrumentality of participatory communication in the global pandemic.
The global pandemic heightened inequality and the marginalization of people living with disabilities in Nigeria. Largely unnoticed in the general media, disabled individuals face increased healthcare social, and economic risks thus, this paper was born out of the need to shed light on the implications and the importance of an all-inclusive response through participatory communication to limit the impact of coronavirus disease on people with disabilities in Nigeria. The paper utilized mixed methods in achieving its objective. The area of study was restricted to Anambra state, Nigeria.
This work revealed that since the outbreak of the novel global pandemic, people with disabilities in Anambra state, Nigeria have been dealt a great blow; as they are the most vulnerable group in the state. In addition to the extreme hardship people living with disabilities face, the paper also revealed that while a few of the people with disabilities are poorly informed about COVID-19, others cannot access information sources; thereby increasing their susceptibility to the pandemic in state. This paper ascertains the need for access to information by people with disabilities through a focus group discussion. The paper concludes by emphasizing that in the bid to manage disease outbreaks, adopting an all- inclusive communication approach which is the core principle of participatory communication is instrumental in protecting the most vulnerable.
Dennis Ekwemnachukwu Okeke