By The Evangelist
January 5, 2023
The Akwa Ibom state government through, the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Welfare, has distributed special handsets and white canes worth millions of naira to Persons With Disabilities (PWDs).
Speaking during the commemoration of the 2022 International White Cane, Wednesday in Uyo, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Welfare, Dr. Ini Adiakpan, stated that the day was marked to sensitise the people on the significance of white canes.
Our correspondent reports that the event was organised by the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Welfare with the theme; Fright White Cane.
“White Cane day celebration is intended to make our people fully aware of the significance of white canes and the need for motorists to exercise special care for the blind persons who carry the white cane.
“The White Cane in our society is a mobility tool and symbol of a blind person’s ability to conquer mobility challenges and invite special reconsideration to the blind on our streets, and highways.
“It is quite apt and timely that the theme is Fright White Cane and the mission today is also targeted on how the blind and visually impaired can live, move around and walk independently while giving back to their communities,” she said.
She stressed that all forms of barriers; stigmatisation, and discrimination against the blind must be removed.
Adiakpan further stated that the celebration was on the achievements and successes attained by the blind people in the state over the years.
She said the effort of her Ministry has given hope to many blinds in the state as the blind have been well educated beyond barriers, noting that blindness does not impede achievement.
The commissioner, who warned the blind against demonstrating aggressive behaviour due to their impairment, called on them to think beyond their impediment and self-pity as many people were also facing different challenges but still living happily.
However, she noted that the visually impaired persons will be trained on how to use the special handsets given to them.
Earlier in his opening speech, the Chairman Nigerian Association of Blind, Akwa Ibom state chapter, Mr. Ubong Ben, lauded the state government for supporting the 1,689 blind across the state.(Blueprint).