Oyo State government has renewed its pledge to always provide a good living standard for citizens living with disability in the State.
The State’s Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Dr. Wasiu Olatubosun stated this on Wednesday at the 11th Edition of Music, Dance and Play Festival for People With Disability, held at the National Museum of Unity, Alesinloye, Ibadan.
Olatubosun who was represented at the event by the Director of Tourism, Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism, Mrs Adejoke Agboola said all the policies, programmes and actions of the present administration were in sinc with the needs of the people with disability.
He maintained that the government saw the need for citizens with special needs to get education and skills so as to stamp out the culture of using them to beg for alms by the road sides.
The Commissioner added that Oyo State’s free education and free health programmes were thought out of the need to cater for this special set of people who he said have been rehabilitated and taken to government schools for them to get education.
According to him, many rehabilitation centers and homes for the children with special needs have received subvention from the State government to further provide the necessary needs for the children in their care.
“The present administration under the leadership of governor Seyi Makinde have the people with special needs in mind whenever a State policy, programme or action is being incubated and during implementation.
“They are very dear to him and you can see that he gives special attention to their needs as carried out by the Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Inclusion whereby he has criminalize the act of using children with disability to beg for alms by their parents.
“Repeated raiding of the popular spots in Ibadan where this happen have led to steps whereby the children were taken to rehabilitation centers in the city and thereafter enrolled in public primary and secondary schools of their choices.
“We are glad that the National Museum is emulating the good gesture of caring for these special persons, especially the children in our society, no amount spent for their care is too much, and I want to promise that Oyo State government will continue to support them in all ways.”
The guest of honor at the event, Mallam Mudathir Atanda Bada who is the Chief Imam of Oluyole Central Mosque in Ibadan said the government at all levels should do more to better the lives of children with disability.
He urged the children not to see their conditions as pathetic, which could make them resort to committing suicide and encouraged them to always think about people that are also disabled but used their God-given talents to break the societal ceiling and become notable in the society.
The Curator of the National Museum, Ibadan, Mrs Comfort Akinmeji appreciated the State government for partnering with the National Museum to organize the annual programme.
She urged members of the society to always see those with special needs as important and be so treated.
Highlights of the programme include musical mimes, drama performance, skills showcasing among others.
Also present at the event was the Executive Assistant to Governor Seyi Makinde on Disability, Barr. Adekanmbi Ayodele and other well-wishers with teachers of the schools invited to the programme.