The association of people living with deafness in Edo state has appealed for support from the state government as it prepared to marked 2015 International Week of the Deaf (IWD) and annual general meeting/national conference to be hosted in Benin city, the state capital.
Mr. Ekhorutomwen Iyobosa, chairman of the association in a press release issued in Benin City, stated that the AGM cum the IWD would be the biggest assembly of the deaf in all member countries, which Nigeria is the 114th registered member.
He said: “This year’s edition which was earlier slated to hold from November 1-7, 2015 had to be postponed for about two weeks to November 24-29, 2015 due to what the host state branch of NNAD called logistics challenges and poor response to request for support for the all important event, especially from the state government.
“This is in spite of the fact that the hosting right was granted to the state on a platter of gold, especially considering the competitiveness and stringent rules associated with such hosting,”
The chairman noted that many states such as Lagos, Nasarawa, Kogi and Zamfara had competitive bidding advantages over Edo, yet Edo state was granted the hosting right due to monumental level of development being witnessed in the state in the present dispensation under the leadership of Governor Adams Oshiomhole.
It is on this premise, he maintained, the Nigerian national association of the deaf, national headquarters granted the hosting right to the state which was gladly accepted by the Edo state
association of the deaf with a promise and hope to surpass success recorded in the last edition hosted in Asaba, Delta state.
The theme for this year AGM/IWD which is “deaf right, a panacea to achieving the change agenda” according to the chairman is very aptly and straight to the point as it sum up the need to carry the deaf along if we are to achieve the wind of positive changes across the country to all segment of the citizenry.
Iyobosa emphasized that “this is the only avenue through which all topical issues affecting the deaf in relation to government policy thrust and change agenda are discussed and solution proffered for these identified topical issues.”
The association lamented that as laudable as the programme is, however, “it is very worrisome that it’s successful hosting is being threatened by lack of adequate support, response and collaborations
from the state government and other stakeholders in the state.
“Several efforts have been made to draw the attention of the state government to this issue which seems to yield little or no effort. It is on this premises that an appeal is being made through the media to call on the state government, private and public spirited individuals and organized private sectors in the state to give all necessary supports and collaborations toward the successful hosting of this epoch-making event. “This would invariably put the state in the Guinness book of
record as far as deaf issues are concerned in Nigeria and worldwide.”