The Akwa Ibom State Government has donated equipment worth millions of naira to Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) in the state.
Speaking during the donation, on Thursday, in Uyo, the Commissioner for Women Affairs and Social Welfare, Dr Ini Adiakpan, said the gesture became necessary as a way to eliminate some of the barriers faced by PWDs.
Adiakpan said that the state government remained one of the few in the country dedicated to the welfare of people with disabilities, including strengthening their sense of belonging in the society.
She applauded the efforts of Gov. Udom Emmanuel, for always creating good and friendly policies favourable to the PWDs.
The commissioner said that other efforts of government could be seen clearly in the consistent provision of mobility devices, financial empowerment, educational materials, scholarship for students with disabilities and sponsoring of skills acquisition programmes.
She urged the PWDs to leverage on the gesture of the government and make good use of the equipment, to enhance their living standards as well as to contribute to the society.
“I wish to use this event to urge you all to make good use of the enabling environment and inherent resources created by government to improve yourselves.
“Live your dreams, rise to the faith of greatness, and contribute your quota to the building of a sustainable and resilient society that embraces humanity in all its diversity,” she said.
Responding, on behalf of the PWDs, the State President, Joint Association of Persons With Disabilities, Mrs Offiong Bassey, applauded the state government for its favourable disposition to the conditions of PWDs.
Bassey noted that the support of the state government had already made street begging a taboo for the association.
The equipment donated included body-support machines, vocational tools, cartons of generating sets, saloon equipment, sewing machines, clutches and wheelchairs.