Governor of Osun, Gboyega Oyetola on Tuesday said his administration would appoint representatives of the people with special needs into the government to give them sense of belonging.
He said the gesture was meant to break all borders and ensure that physically-challenged people have no excuse to waste their talents and deny the state their contributions.
The governor spoke at the School for the Physically challenged in Osogbo while inaugurating four socially-inclusive micro projects to celebrate 2019 International Day for Persons with Special Needs.
The projects include, Braille Press Center for the blind, hostel for girls with disabilities, fencing of school of children with special needs and tricycles for the physically challenged group.
Oyetola reiterated his administration’s commitment to building a state where there will be equal opportunities for all citizens regardless of the difference in their respective physical state.
He maintained that the current administration has demonstrated great commitment to the welfare and education of the physically challenged persons in the same way it has done for their able-bodied.
“As an administration, we place high premium on persons living with disabilities, we accord them the same attention and recognition as their able-bodied colleagues, and we make them an important part of everything we do.
“The Braille Press Center for the Blind houses books and other reading materials transcribe for blind children to enable them to review and study the written words with the aid of the Braille. This will enhance literacy and intellectual capability.
“This centre is unique, it is the first of its kind in the South West of Nigeria and it is supported by the State Government and managed by the Blind group. It will provide job opportunities for the blind and make them relevant members of the society,” Oyetola added.
Earlier in her address, the General Manager of Osun Agency for the Community and Social Development Project (CSDP), Mrs Funmi Aderonke said the four completed micro projects are in tandem with the three philosophical principles of the State Development Agenda which are poverty eradication, gender and social inclusion, value addition and sustainability of development.
She revealed that government in conjunction with the World Bank through the CSDP has committed N109.3 million for a total of 48 socially-inclusive micro projects in the state.
Also speaking, the Mistress of the school, Mrs.Titilayo Amoo, thanked the state government for the support and love for the people with special needs in the state, adding that the projects would increase the quality of teaching and learning in the school and enhance the pupils’ performance.
In their separate remarks, some of the pupils thanked Mr. Governor for giving priority to their education and welfare.
They commended him for identifying with them on the auspicious occasion, adding that he was the only governor who has visited the school since its establishment over 20 years ago.