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INTRODUCTION

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We aim is to help our clients leverage advertising campaigns to build brand awareness and drive product demand. Whether you’re an established brand or a new market contender, our team can help you build through effective advertising.

WEB TRAFFIC & ANALYTICS

To avoid exaggeration,we hereby present below some graphs obtained from our daily web analytics and traffic reports which shows the number of unique visitors we had coming in per day. 

Web Analytic reports for the month of February 2018

Our social media page wouldn’t be let out either in promotion of your brands as most of our articles and posts ranks higher in terms of page views as shown in the screenshot below with Post titles as references

Marked red shows number of Post & Article views from traffic source of our Facebook fans page

below also present our web traffic and analytic report for the ongoing month of March with dates;

Ongoing daily Web Analytic reports for the month of March 2018

Our Mobile app (see screenshot below) is currently in beta mode. hence when launched will be available to the general community for ease of access to Inclusive News Network website.

it is going to be available for Android and IOS (Iphone) users for a start while subsequent version will cover other operating system platforms

A target downloads of at least 100000 of this app have been earmarked for the first quater and that means having your products displayed on every users finger tips.

Inclusive Network Mobile Application. (INN_Mobile)

Ads Rate & Placement

the above Web reports shows we maintain an average range of 500 – 1000 visitors daily. 

we will be using the Cost per day (CPD) option to charge for ads rate placement on our website. we also have a variety of Advertising placement options for you to choose from ranging from Header, Sidebars, Footer, Popup, Ads in between articles, Sponsored post etc. 

the below shows our ads rate and their placement;

* Headers section all pages – ($5 per day for 30 days)
* Sidebars (Homepages only )
           a. Sky crapper (300*600 banner) $1.7 per day for 30 days
           b. Medium Rectangle. (250 *250 banner) $0.8 per days for 30 days
* Footer section ($3 per day for 30 days) 
* IN-Article-Ads (your product will be displayed in every of our latest daily  articles/post/news) – $10 per day for 30 days
*Pop ups (coming soon) 
*Sponspored Post (coming soon) 
*Video ads (coming soon) 

* All above are negiotable, Kindly send us an email via inclusivenewsnetwork@gmail.com or support@inclusivenews.com.ng or chat with us via Whatsapp using +2348063458681

Kindly bookmark this page as we aim to update it later showing more ads rates and options or send us a mail as stated above for urgent ads placement.

EXPECTED OUTCOME

– Increased organic traffic to  our Client website
– Increased traffic to Client website  from social media
– Promotes client products via video ads and sponsored post
–  increase in inbound lead generation

84 per cent of blindness diseases in Nigeria avoidable – FG

The Federal Government on Thursday said that the country had a 0.78 per cent prevalence for blindness.

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire disclosed this during a press briefing to commemorate the World Sight Day.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), reports that the theme of this year’s celebration is “Love your Eyes” and the slogan is “Save Your Sight”. The World Sight day focuses on the importance of eyes and the related ailments which many times people tend to ignore.

The WSD is an annual day of awareness held on the second Thursday of October, to focus global attention on vision impairment, including blindness.

The programme will run for a week with various activities lined up which includes, advocacy visit to various agencies and organisations, school eyesight programme which will make it compulsory for each child to go through vision testing and other activities.

Ehanire, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary of the ministry, Mr Mamman Mahmuda also said that 84 per cent of the blinding diseases in the country were avoidable.

He, however, added that lack of awareness and inaccessibility to health care services were possible reasons why the blinding diseases could not be avoided.

He said, “In a country such as ours with a prevalence of 0.78 per cent for blindness and 84 per cent of these blinding diseases are avoidable with possible causes like cataract, glaucoma, refractive errors, uncorrected aphakia, harmful traditional eye practices, corneal opacities and NTDs like trachoma.

“Lack of awareness and inaccessibility of eye care services are possible reasons why many Nigerians still remain visually impaired as they still seek unorthodox eye care which leads to disastrous treatment outcomes.

He, however, stated that the integration of Primary Eye Care into Primary Health Care would change the pattern of eye care services in Nigeria.

He said, “We believe that the integration of PEC into PHC will potentially change the pattern of eye care services in Nigeria to a level where the nationwide blindness prevention efforts would start from the grassroots instead of from the urban hospitals as is the case today.

“We have gone further to train 12 master trainers (2 from each geopolitical zones) who would further train the resource persons for the states within their geopolitical zones.

“Currently, in the next few days, we are in the process of training primary health care workers in Kogi state and we wish to thank Sight Savers international for their efforts in this regard.

“Furthermore, we have developed the data collection and reporting tools for PHCs.

“This we believe is necessary step further in the integration process which is aimed at strengthening the capacity of the non-ophthalmic Primary Health Care Workers (PHCWs) in Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) which are major access points for many Nigerians in the rural areas,” he added.

Also speaking, the senior program manager for Eye Health sightsavers, Dr Selben Penzin said that nearly every one person on earth would experience an eye disorder in life and this gets more possible as they got older.

“According to the World Health Organization, more than 2.2 billion people, quarter of the world’s population – have a visual impairment, with four times as many people affected in low and middle income countries.

“More than half of this vision loss is preventable or treatable, but lack of quality eye care services means many people cannot access the care they need.

“It is estimated that globally, hundreds of billions of dollars is lost in productivity each year because of visual impairment and blindness.

“Since 1950, Sightsavers has collaborated with ministries of health and partners in more than 30 countries to eliminate avoidable blindness.” Penzin explained.

According to her, on this WSD 2021, let’s remember that there are millions of people in this country who can be given the gift of sight, the gift of light, if you empower them.

She called on the government to make sure everyone, everywhere could access eye care means including women, people with disabilities and other marginalised groups in eye health programmes and their design.

On her part, the National Advisor Inclusive Eye Health, Nigeria, Christoffel-Blindenmission Christian Blind Mission, CBM, Dilichukwu Aniemeka, said that the importance of eye health could not be overemphasized, as at least 1 billion people have a vision impairment that could have been prevented or were yet to be addressed globally.

Aniemeka said that “Approximately 80 per cent of these individuals live in low and middle-income countries such as Nigeria. This number is expected to increase owing to population growth and ageing”.

“CBM recognises the gap in eye health service delivery in Nigeria, and aligns with the National Eye health policy to develop strategies to strengthen our eye health systems.

“We are mobilizing resources to improve eye health coverage, make these services affordable and acceptable to the people at a cost that will not cause impoverishment. However, we can do more,” Aniemeka said.

She added that everyone have a role to play in creating awareness and educating the general public on blindness and visual impairment.

2021 APC State Congress: FAWWASS Urges APC Executives to Serve the Party With Total Commitments

… Congratulates Hon. Abdullahi Bello on his return as the State Party Chairman

The President of Fair Win Women Advancement Association (FAWWASS), Hajia Bilikisu Onumoko has congratulated the leadership of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the state.

The All Progressive Congress on Saturday, October 16 held their Congress in Lokoja, Kogi State Capital and the returning and new executives are expected to pilot the affairs of the party in the state for the next four years.

According to Bilikisu, what transpired during the Congress was true democracy in action.

She on behalf of FAWWASS, congratulated Hon. Abdullahi Bello, noting that his track records of achievements in the party, remain unbeatable in the state.

Speaking further, she stated that in some states, two seats of officials emerged as a result of the parallel Congress held, but it’s not so in Kogi State. This is because of the proactiveness of our Governor.

Hajia Bilikisu commended Governor Yahaya Bello for his quality leadership which, she says, has endeared the people of Kogi state to the party.

She urged Hon. Abdullahi Bello to work earnestly with his executives and ensure the party remains in power beyond 2023 in the state.

While wishing Hon. Abdullahi Bello more wisdom to take the party to more heights, she called on the members of the party, to continue to give him the needed support for the over-all development of the state.

White Cane Day: Lagos govt programmes not beneficial to people living with disabilities, blind community says

By Oluwakemi Adelagun

The Nigeria Association of the Blind (NAB), Lagos chapter, has accused the Lagos State Office for Disability Affairs (LASODA) of using scarce state resources to set up programmes that are not beneficial to persons living with disabilities.

The group disclosed this in a statement signed by its media officer, Gbenga Ogundare, on Friday, in commemoration of the 2021 International White Cane and Safety Day held in Alimosho local government.

The NAB chairman, Lukman Salami, said LASODA cannot effectively activate and implement the Lagos State Special Peoples Law (LSSPL) to the advantage of persons living with disabilities in the state.

October 15 is set aside globally to commemorate the importance of the white cane as a crucial tool for safe and reliable navigation for visually-impaired persons.

The theme of this year is “accessibility for all, safety, productivity and resilience.”

“Programmes implemented by LASODA so far are a sheer mockery of Governor (Babajide) Sanwo-Olu’s genuine intention for the emancipation of persons with disabilities and the true spirit of the Lagos State Special Peoples Law,” Mr Salami said.

“Other than sheer tokenism and lack of technical capacity about how to proffer solutions to the many challenges PWDs contend with currently, one would wonder what usefulness a 3-day sign language training will serve a beginner, for instance.

“One is left to imagine what inclusive benefits are there to derive in an interactive quiz among pupils with disabilities, or even a disability expo among disabled persons Etc. It’s just sheer financial recklessness.”

Infrastructural and educational inclusion

Mr Salami also expressed concerns over the non-availability of public primary schools for the blind in the state.

He said the only school that caters to the educational needs of visually-impaired children in Lagos are privately owned and has become grossly inadequate to the rising number of blind children in the state.

Mr Ogundare said persons with disabilities are still finding it difficult to access road infrastructures and academic institutions.

“For instance, Lagos State has accessible pedestrian bridges indeed, but these facilities are inhabited by miscreants, destitute and hawkers who make the bridges an unsafe place for PWDs and other users,” Mr Ogundare said.

“Again, where there are defined walkways, more often than not, some of the slabs are already gorged with slits or outrightly removed, thereby making the walkway a death trap for the blind.

“And where this is not the case, hawkers and artisans who display their wares on these paths would still make it impossible for the blind to navigate safely. All of these combined smacks of structural violence against the visually impaired.”

Contacted on Friday, LASODA’s media officer, Ademiluyi Adebowale, told this reporter to reach the agency’s managing director, Dare Dairo.

Mr Dairo was reached on Friday evening and he said he was in a meeting before hanging up. Again on Saturday, he was telephoned twice and failed to answer or return the calls.

An SMS was later sent to him but he was yet to respond as of the time of filing the report.

Visually impaired Nigerians cry out, say we’re worst victims of insecurity

Friday Olokor

The Nigeria Association of the Blind on Friday called on the Federal Government to rise to the occasion and arrest the worsening insecurity in the country.

The organization said that of all the victims of banditry, insurgency and kidnapping, its members were most affected.

The President of NAB, Ishiyaku Adamu, said these during a press conference in commemoration of this year’s International White Cane Safety Day.

According to him, whenever there is a displacement, people with disabilities are usually left behind because we cannot run.

Adamu however, commended the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd ), for the establishment of the Disabilities Commission.

He said, “We are asking the government to tackle the growing insecurity in the country. The issue is bothering our people. We are mostly affected. When there is attack in every village, we are mostly affected.

“It is documented worldwide that whenever you see one person killed, at least three or four persons have become disabled and it means an increase in the number of disabled people.

“Whenever there is a displacement, people with disabilities are usually left behind because we cannot run. The government should therefore increase their effort, so the issue of security will become history.”

Adamu urged the National Assembly to pass the National Copyright Bill before it, saying “passage of the Bill will take care of the interest of the blind and other people in Nigeria and aid the domestication of “Marrakesh Treaty”, which allows for copyright exceptions to facilitate the creation of accessible versions of books and other copyrighted works for visually impaired persons.

Read Also: White Cane Safety Day: Visually impaired persons task Nigerians on regular eye screening

Adamu said, “Access to education is very important for the blind people. We want to see aggressive steps towards promoting inclusive education at all levels.

“This is what Article 24 of the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities says and Nigeria is a signatory to that convention.

“We want to remind the government to also fulfil it own obligation under article 27 of the convention by ensuring promotion of inclusion of employment for our people.

“We have a lot of youth who are blind and are educated and eager to contribute their own quota to the development of the country but they are not employed.

“The Discrimination Against Persons with Disabilities (Prohibition) Act reserved five per cent for employment in government sector for persons with disabilities. We are calling for quick implementation of the act.

“We can serve at the National Assembly, Central Bank of Nigeria, and Presidency. We want to see our people everywhere”.

The Director-General, Nigerian Copyright Commission, John Asein, maintained that the commission was formulating policies towards ensuring that the blind and visually impaired have access to the written words.

“At NCC, want to ensure that we deepen the campaign that whenever publishers or authors are bringing out books, they should also make sure that the blinds have copy they can read.

“We also advocating that anytime government spends money for the supply of books to students, such books should also be made available in a format that the blind can read.”

EU to FG: Disability law a waste without implementation

By Matthew Ogune

The European Union (EU) delegation to Nigeria and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has reminded the Federal Government that failure to effectively implement the provisions contained in the disability rights law passed in 2019 will render the law ineffective.

Programme Manager at EU delegation, Laolu Olawunmi stated this, yesterday, in Abuja at the 2021 Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) annual lecture tagged, ‘enhancing the civic space and political participation of Persons With Disabilities (PWDs).’

She said: “We commend the passage of the disability rights law passed in January 2019, and the subsequent establishment of the national commission for persons with disabilities.

“We must be reminded that a good law is only as effective as its implementation, and failure to implement will render such a law ineffective. We must not rest on our laurels.”

Olawunmi, who disclosed that a society’s humanity is measured by the way it treats vulnerable population, especially persons with disabilities, regretted that after women, children and youths, disabled persons constitute one of the next categories of marginalised sector in Nigeria and Africa.

She maintained that the challenge faced by PWDs has been further exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic, as access to healthcare was becoming more restricted and people who rely on physical assistance face significant constraints in their daily life.

Read Also: FG orders TV stations to feature sign language interpreters

“It is no secret that societal barriers place persons with disabilities at increased risk of violence, poverty, poorer health outcomes, marginalisation in their communities, and fewer educational and employment opportunities. Such outcomes are not inevitable, however, and this is why we have to be deliberate on disability inclusion,” she said.

She disclosed that a research conducted by Nigeria Institute of Advance Legal Studies showed that out of about 10 million PWDs in Nigeria, 1.8 million are domiciled in Lagos State, and that nine out of 10 disabled persons in the country live below poverty line.

She said the EU has been a strong partner in Nigeria’s effort aimed at disability inclusion, and that the EU has been working with key stakeholders to promote access to justice, political participation and social services.

In his address, the Minister of information and culture, Lai Mohammed, disclosed that the present administration has included 100,000 persons with disabilities as beneficiaries of Federal Government’s conditional cash transfer in a bid to address PWDs’ plight.

Mohammed said an additional 40,000 persons with disabilities had also been added to the Batch C, Stream one of the Federal Government’s Npower programme.

The minister said there was also ongoing design and construction of accessibility facilities in three Nigerian universities to cater for disabled citizens’ needs.

Read Also: Enacting A Disability Law In Nigeria: A Call To Action

“There is also development of minimum accessibility standard and policy document that provides detailed accessibility facility requirements for building roads and transportation.

“The Inspector General of police has recently approved the establishment of disability services in all Nigeria police formation in partnership with the national commission for persons with disabilities to curb discrimination and other ill treatment of persons with disabilities in Nigeria…” he said.

In his welcome address, FRCN Director General, Dr. Mansur Liman and the founder of Albino Foundation, Jake Epelle, called for an end to barriers preventing PWDs from contributing effectively to Nigeria’s socio-political and economic development.

They noted that PWDs have for too long experienced negative attitudes at family and community levels, including name-calling, negative beliefs, and misconceptions surrounding causes of disabilities.

According to the duo, these negative attitudes manifest in rejection, neglect, loss of respect, denial of identity or self-worth, often resulting in low self-esteem, depression and isolation.

They stressed the need for government officials, policymakers, and decision makers to be aware of the importance of disability as a developmental issue and enhance data collection on disability.

FG to train 10,000 IDPs in digital literacy skills

From Adanna Nnamani

The Federal Government said it would be training 10,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in digital literacy skills.

The Director General, Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Kashifu Inuwa, made the disclosure at the weekend when he welcomed Imaan Ibrahim, Federal Commissioner, National Commission for Refugees, Migrants and IDPs (NCFRMI) to his office in Abuja.

Inuwa said the initiative was to enable the seamless reintegration of Nigerian citizens who were displaced as a result of insecurity.

The DG added that the training of IDPs on Digital Literacy was part of the implementation of NITDA’s Strategic Roadmap and Action Plan, (SRAP 2021-2024) to enable a fast-growing digital economy for Nigerians.

‘Employing Digital Literacy and Skills strategy, one of the seven pillars of NITDA SRAP is in line with the implementation of the National Digital Economy Policy and Strategy (NDEPS) which promotes the use of digital technology to expand and diversify Nigeria’s economy,’ he said.

‘Following a methodological approach is necessary to achieve a SMART initiative. A combination of capable people, due process and deployment of adequate technology is required.’

While explaining some of NITDA’s intervention projects, especially in capacity building, Inuwa noted that the Agency has continuously engaged in several training across the 6 geopolitical zones of the country with the use of different platforms like virtual training, online platforms, and physical training.

The NITDA boss also expressed willingness to support the commission with working tools and conduct IT training for its staff while also ensuring the team of NITDA’s collaboration.

He said a Digital Transformation Technical Working Group (DTTWG) comprising members from both organisations would be set up to enable the execution of identified aspects for partnership.

Earlier in her remarks, the NCFRMI Federal Commissioner, said her organisation was seeking collaboration in training, technical and tool support from NITDA to promote digital inclusion and national development.

Ibrahim noted that over 4 million Nigerians are internally displaced and the number is doubling up at an alarming rate, due to the natural disasters resulting from floods.

The commissioner was optimistic that NITDA’s move to train teeming youths at the IDPs and persons of concern would contribute to the diversification of the economy that will enable the elevation of 100 million people out of poverty in 10 years as projected by President Muhammadu Buhari’s Administration.

Understanding Global Developmental Delays in Young Children

If you have noticed—disability—any kind—often occurs in individuals between the age range of 0-18. There are few cases of people getting disabled when they are 20 and above. While disability does occur in people at 20 and over, the frequency isn’t quite significant.

Unknown to many, there is a “global psychopathological disability” beyond the most common ones, which include visual disability, hearing disability, and physical disability. There is a category of intellectual and physical disabilities that are emotional, mental, and psychopathological.

What is developmental delay?

Developmental delay is when a child lags behind their peers in one or more areas of emotional, mental, or physical growth. If your child is delayed, early treatment is the best way to help them make progress or even to catch up.

There are many different types of developmental delays in infants and young children. They include problems with language or speech, Vision, Movement — motor skills, Social and emotional skills, and Thinking — cognitive skills.

What makes developmental delay global?

Sometimes, a significant delay occurs in two or more of those areas problems with language or speech, Vision, Movement — motor skills, Social and emotional skills, and Thinking — cognitive skills). When that happens, it’s called “global developmental delay.” It refers to infants and preschoolers up to age 5 who show delays lasting at least 6 months.

Developmental delay and Developmental disabilities

Developmental delay is different from developmental disabilities, which include such conditions as cerebral palsy, hearing loss, and autism spectrum disorder and which usually last for life.

Causes of Developmental Delay Causes, including Risk Factors

Little children learn to crawl, talk, or use the toilet at different speeds. But sometimes a child may reach those milestones much later than other kids. There are many reasons for such delays, including:

Being born prematurely and having genetic conditions like Down syndrome or muscular dystrophy.

Other causes include:

  • Poor eyesight or hearing
  • Malnutrition
  • Alcohol or drug use during pregnancy
  • Physical abuse or neglect
  • Lack of oxygen during delivery

Different types of delays

Language and Speech Developmental Delays

These are not unusual delays in toddlers. Language and speech problems are the most common type of developmental delays. Speech refers to verbal expression, including the way words are formed. Language is a broader system of expressing and receiving information, such as being able to understand gestures.

Possible causes. A variety of problems may cause language and speech delays, including:

Exposure to more than one language — which can cause mild delays in toddlers but not delays by the time they reach school age

A learning disability

Causes

Child abuse or neglect

A problem with the muscles controlling speech — a disorder called dysarthria

Hearing loss, which may occur in children who have severe middle ear infections or occur as a result of certain medications, trauma, or genetic disorders

Autism spectrum disorders — a group of neurological disorders that may involve impaired communication as well as impaired social interaction and cognitive skills

No cause can be found.

Managing global developmental delays

It is not the end of the world for sufferers of global developmental delays.

The specific management of children with global developmental delay will depend on their individual needs and underlying diagnosis. Early intervention is essential to support the child to reach their full potential. Specialists involved in the management of GDD in children include:

  • Speech therapists
  • Physical therapists
  • Occupational therapists
  • Hearing specialists (Audiologist)
  • Developmental pediatricians
  • Neurologists
  • Providers of Early Intervention Services (depending on location)

As well as involving professionals, parents can support the development of your children by playing with them, reading with them, showing them how to do tasks, and supporting them to participate in activities of daily living such as washing, dressing, and eating.

 

Ilaji Resort/NIPSN Disability Sports Championship Closes On a High Note

  • The 2nd Ilaji Resort/NIPSN (Network for Inclusion of People with Special Needs) Sports Championship ended on Sunday, 17th October 2021
  • Individuals with disabilities had, on Friday trooped in from several states in the federation in the spirit of sportsmanship to display sports skills and character
  • Trophies and Cash prizes were presented to participants by Oyo State’s Commissioner for Youths and Sports, Hon. Seun Fakorede
  • VIPs from the State political and social arenas, including the Special Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Youths and Sports, SA on Disabilities, and Oyo State Commissioner for Youths and Sports, and others came to grace the finale
  • Financier and philanthropist Chief Sanusi and Founder Sekinat Hammed were present as trophies and various cash prizes were given to deserving individuals depending on the position won.
  • Among the events competed for during the 3-day event include; Blind football, para-lifting, sack race, Wheelchair race, Go ball.

It was encomiums galore at the closing ceremony of Ilaji Resort/NIPSN Disability Sports Championship for Chief Dotun Sanusi, the Chairman of Ilaji Sports Resort, by the winners of various categories of events who went home with cash prizes.

Ilaji Resort/NIPSN Sports Championship is the second-ever disability championship to be organized in Oyo State, which began on Friday and ended on Sunday, was the brainchild of Network for Inclusion of People with Special Needs (NIPSN)—founded by Hammed Sekinat, and solely financed by Chief Dotun Sanusi, a sports enthusiast and philanthropic per excellence.

The athletes who suffered from one form of disability or another lauded Chief Sanusi for “motivating and being a source of hope for them”.

Chief has been doing a phenomenal job, and we cannot but thank him for his incredible humanity.

During the presentation of cash prizes to the athletes by Oyo State’s Commissioner for Youths and Sports, Hon. Seun Fakorede, the physically challenged athletes expressed their readiness and determination to use the motivation gotten from the 3-day championship to put their respective careers back on track.

Hon. Fakorede maintained that the Seyi Makinde-led government is fine-tuning plans to organize a statewide sport for the youths in Oyo State.

The commissioner who lauded Chief Sanusi for his consistent efforts geared towards the socio-economic development of Oyo State urged the people of the state not to relent on the support which they have been giving to the Seyi-Makinde led government from his inception.

Addressing newsmen after the event, Chief Sanusi expressed his delight for putting smiles into the faces of the special athletes adding that it is part of his way of giving back to society.

In his words; “I am so proud of all the incredible array of people with disabilities who are out to show the best they can do despite their challenges. I will always support you all.”

“What these people do, in terms of their huge potentials, scaling the hurdles of their challenges to bring forth their talents that are now beneficial to all and sundry is something that amazes me and I will never fail to lend my supports to an exercise of this nature”, Chief Sanusi concluded.

Chief Sanusi presented trophies and various cash prizes to deserving individuals depending on the position won.

Among the events competed for during the 3-day event include; Blind football, para-lifting, sack race, Wheelchair race, Go ball.

Among the dignitaries that graced the occasion were, Hon. Kazeem Bolarinwa, Special Adviser to Governor Seyi Makinde on Youths and Sports, Barrister Ayodele Adekanmbi, Special Adviser and Executive Assistant to Governor Makinde on disability matters, and other dignitaries.

 

Police parade blind woman with fresh human skull in Akwa Ibom

• Arrest 138 others for different crimes

Akwa Ibom State Police Command, yesterday, paraded a blind aged woman arrested by its operatives for allegedly possessing a fresh human skull.

The suspect was paraded alongside 138 others who were arrested across the state for various offences including murder, militancy, abduction, cultism, armed robbery, stealing, unlawful possession of firearms and vandalism, among others.

A breakdown of the number showed that 11 suspects were arrested for alleged murder, 47 for armed robbery and stealing, 10 for defilement and rape, 21 for alleged cultism, 16 for vandalism, seven for kidnapping and abduction, three for militancy and 24 for others crimes including child stealing.

The Public Relations Officer (PPRO) of the State Police Command, SP Odiko Macdon, who paraded the suspects at the police headquarters in Ikot Akpan Abia, Uyo, said they were arrested in the third quarter of the year.

The aged blind woman, Mrs. Eseme James, was paraded with the human skull reportedly seen in her house at Nnung Oku Ibiet village in Oruk Anam local council of the state.

According to him, the woman was arrested with the aid of her daughter on October 12, 2021, about 6:45 p.m by soldiers of the ‘Exercise Still Water’ and handed over to the police for discreet and diligent investigation and prosecution.

He said the police was suspecting that the woman must have been involved in ritual activities even though she has told the police that her deceased husband was a native doctor and that her son took over the trade.

“The worry of the police is: What is she doing with a fresh human skull? It means murder has been committed somewhere recently,” Macdon said.

In an interview with journalists, the woman denied knowledge of the human skull allegedly found in her residence, saying she only heard from her daughter that the skull was exhumed by the police at the boundary of a disputed piece of land near her house.

Read Also: Demolition Of Blind Man’s Building In Enugu: ES, NCPWD Swings Into Action

“I don’t know anything about this skull. When they came to the house, I asked this girl what was going on since I cannot see. She told me that police exhumed a human skull from the boundary of that disputed land. They gave it to me to bring to the police station; that is why I’m here.

“When they came to the house, I was the only person they saw and they said, ‘take let’s go.’

“My husband was a native doctor; I have never seen him do anything with human parts. I don’t know who buried that skull there. The land has been in dispute even before he died,” the accused said in his native language.

Macdon, who stood in for the State Commissioner of Police, Andrew Amiengheme, also disclosed that two suspected foreign militants and a Nigerian were arrested on September 13, 2021, with explosives.

According to him, men of AIG Border Patrol Monitoring Unit arrested the militants, two Cameroonians and a Cross Riverian, while on stop and search operation along Okobo-Oron highway in the state.

He gave their names as Adede De Black, Fombutu Tita, both males from the Republic of Cameroon and Bernard Mfam, a man from Ikom local council of Cross River State, adding that they had been charged to court.

“The suspected militants were arrested with two bags of dynamites, containers of incense powder, a bag containing items suspected to be talismans, some bottles of concoction, packets of incense oil, a piece of love soap, a bag of ground herbs and five new sets of walkie talkies,” he added.

He attributed the successes recorded by the Command in crime prevention to its gallant officers and men, effective collaboration with sister security agencies, support from the state government and cooperation from members of the public who always volunteer information.

Voter Education: INEC Takes Training To PWDs And CSOs At Grassroot Level

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC), in conjunction with International Foundation For Electoral Systems (IFES ) just concluded a 2-day Voter Education Training for Persons With Disabilities and Civil Society Organizations.

The 2-day training challenged participants to take the lessons learnt to the grass-roots mobilizing and educating the people on the importance of elections and the right to vote.

Declaring the training open, Resident Electoral Commissioner Dr Nwachukwu Orji, represented by Mr Samuel Nimem (Head of Department Voter Education and Publicity) stated that Anambra is a good place to be regardless of the present security challenges. He remarked that the election is not a one man show rather it requires the efforts of all, irrespective of positions and views.

“INEC believes everyone is equal with inclusion of marginalized groups like women, youth, elderly, Persons with Disabilities as well as Civil Society Organizations.

“Free and Fair elections cannot be achieved by INEC alone. Involving PWDs and CSOs is a critical step towards recording electoral success story come November 6.”

Nimem thanked the development partner, International Foundation For Electoral Systems (IFES) for its continual support even as the electoral body continues to advance electronically.

In a goodwill message, Miss Judith Rotten representing IFES Country Director, Seray Jah, welcomed participants to the training. She noted that IFES has been collaborating with INEC towards increasing participation of marginalized groups in the electoral process since 2009.

“This training is a method of educating you on Voter Education in hope that you will take whatever you learnt here down to your various communities.”

Director of a newly created INEC department, Gender and Inclusive Department (GID), Mrs Blessing Obidiegwu, represented by a Deputy Director, Mrs Lakunuya Dorathy Bello emphasized that election gives electorates the power to have a say in governance.

Read Also:. PWDs: Group urges INEC to provide sign language interpreters for Anambra poll

She noted that PWDs and CSOs have huge roles to play in Voters Education through advocacy, Voters Education Forums, etc.

According to her, “The Gender and Inclusive Department of INEC was solely created for the marginalized groups and we look up to the CSOs and PWDs to take the message of Voters Education to every nook and crannies of Anambra State even as the elections draw near.”

In his vote of thanks, chairman, Joint National Association of Persons with Disabilities (JONAPWD) Anambra Chapter, Comrade Ugochukwu Ernest Okeke appreciated INEC and IFES for organizing the kind of educative training.

Ugochukwu acknowledged that INEC and other development partners have done a lot in promoting inclusion and active participation of PWDs in Electoral Processes through trainings and workshops.

“Persons with Disabilities in Anambra State have started to use previously acquired knowledge to encourage members to actively participate in the just concluded Continuous Voters Registration. Consequently, many of us have our PVCs handy and ready to make our votes count”

Lastly, Ugochukwu assured organizers of the training that all participants at the training will take the acquired to the grassroots and enlighten others.

Facilitators of the training took time to take the participants through Basics of Voters Education, Achieving Voters Education, Concept of Free and Fair Elections, Voters Education Strategies and Simulation, etc. There were also group work and presentations.

Highpoint of the event was role play on Conducting a Forum and sensitization of the public on CVR and importance of PVC.

Over 4 million Nigerians hungry, malnourished ― FAO

The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations has said that over four million Nigerians go hungry and suffer from malnutrition.

FAO said this situation is large because of the challenges associated with conflict, pests and diseases, natural disasters, loss of biodiversity, habitat destruction, economic challenges and devastating effects of COVID-19.

Fred Kafeero, FAO Representative to Nigeria and the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), made this known on Friday in Abuja during a Press Conference at the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development to mark the 2021 World Food Day celebration with the theme: Our actions are our future: ‘Better production, better nutrition, a better environment and a better life.

Kafeero said functioning food systems would not only assure enough and quality food but environmental sustainability which is vital for the development of the present and future generations.

He said there are also other key elements such as better data, governance and institutions that need to be added to the equation.

He, however, called for interventions on research and development to make farming more technologically advanced, innovation in digital agriculture, and re-skilling young people and improving literacy rates among women.

“Every one of us has a role to play in ending hunger by changing the way we produce food, adding value to our food products and making food choices that will improve our health and reduce waste and loss of food.

“Our approach can only be effective if it’s rooted in working together with governments and key partners as they forge their own national pathways towards transformation in line with their specific conditions and needs,” he said.

PWDs Seek Immediate Implementation Of Disability Law In Kaduna

By Mohammed I. Yaba

Persons with disabilities in Kaduna State have called for immediate implementation of the Disability Law signed by Governor Nasir El-Rufai to mainstream and integrate persons with disabilities into the larger society.

Speaking under the Joint National Association of Persons with Disability (JONAPWD), Kaduna chapter, the group’s Chairman, Suleiman Abdulazeez, said the law became a reality after over 10 years of relentless advocacy by the disability community, Civil Society Organisations and the media.

He said the law, which was initiated as a private bill by the Kaduna State chapter of JONAPWD under the leadership of Rilwan Abdullahi in 2019, was to make sure that persons with disabilities have the same rights and opportunities as everyone in the larger society.

“It is also aimed at guaranteeing equal opportunity for individuals with disability in the public and private sectors to access equal services delivery and inclusion.

“We sincerely believe that this legacy achievement by the governor of Kaduna State will take our members off the street, erase the frequent experience of discrimination and barriers faced by the community to participate in all aspects of society,” he further said.

Comrade Suleiman said the law would pave the way for persons with disabilities to access public buildings, healthcare, education, employment and transportation while also providing an enabling environment for the disability community to enjoy a better livelihood.

COVID-19 worsening poverty, mental illness — Psychiatrists

By Chioma Obinna

As Nigerians joined the rest of the world to mark the 2021 World Mental Health Day with the theme: “Mental Health in an unequal world”, renowned psychiatrists have decried the state of mental health in Nigeria, lamenting that COVID-19 has increased poverty and mental ill-health among Nigerians.

In their submissions at an event organised by The Retreat Hospital, Ikorodu, Lagos, they argued that although the pandemic increased more awareness on mental illness Nigeria has failed to invest in mental health, making it impossible for over 75 percent of Nigerians with mental disorders to have access to treatment.

In the views of the Chief Executive Officer of The Retreat, Dr Olufemi Oluwatayo, the Coronavirus pandemic has led to an unprecedented level of poverty around the world and the disparity between the rich and the poor has increased significantly.

Sadly, he noted, “Inequalities and poverty have been associated with mental ill-health and impairments in psychological wellbeing for decades.

According to him, with the rate of mental disorders being generally higher in people of low socio-economic background, COVID-19 has impacted the mental health of both the rich and poor and thus increasing the burden of mental ill-health in Nigeria and the world at large.

Noting that many countries are investing more in mental health, Oluwatayo regretted that Nigeria is doing nothing. “Where is the investment by our government and private investors? How can we meet the challenges of the increasing mental health burden on our nations? Where are the clever ideas and solutions?” he queried.

Stating that The Retreat opened for patients in 2017 towards providing essential mental health services to Nigerians, Oluwatayo said the hospital is currently setting standards for mental health services and contributing its quota to mental health service provisions in Nigeria.

At the event which has secondary students from different schools in Lagos, a Consultant Psychiatrist, Dr Femi Olugbile who decried the state of mental health services across the world said in Nigeria, the picture was as ‘bleak as ever’.

According to him, most episodes of mental illness in Nigeria go undiscovered and untreated, leaving an army of ‘walking wounded’ in the population carrying out the rituals of everyday life. He said the issue of inequality as described in the theme of the World Mental Health Day was very important as among nations, individuals, resources are not equitably distributed.

Olugbile who said all the categories of mental illness exist in both rich and poor lamented that extreme poverty exists in some of the most deprived areas of Nigeria and the world at large was a vulnerability factor for many illnesses.

He said it is an unassailable commonsense solution that primary health care, including basic mental healthcare, deployed and made available virtually at every citizen’s doorstep.

In his presentation tagged: “Mental Health in a Changing World: Mental Health Initiative” an Associate Professor of Psychiatry Department of Behavioural Medicine, Lagos State University College of Medicine, Prof. Ayodele Olurotimi Coker who disclosed that over 75 percent of Nigerians with mental disorders have no access to treatment advised people to be happy and balance all the dimensions of health to keep them happy. He stressed the need for physical, mental, spiritual health and social wellbeing to self-actualise and enjoy beauty and quality life. “Apart from improving our mental health, we must consciously seek for meaning and purpose in life to make our lives joyful.” He lamented that mental illness affects the productivity and effectiveness of Nigerians as they adopt the learned helplessness model.

“COVID-19 pandemic will not go away soon; rates of mental illness associated with the pandemic may continue to rise. Policymakers should think of mental health surveillance & routine creening for common mental health disorders at the PHCs. They should urgently train, engage and involve other health workers (nurses, social workers, community health workers, religious leaders, mental health NGOs, & life coaches in evidence-based counselling methods to assist manage the expected increase in mental health conditions.

Mental healthcare should be integrated into primary and secondary health care as soon as possible.” Calling for awareness, he disclosed that 1 in 10 persons suffer generalised anxiety like panic attacks, post-traumatic and stress disorder. Also, 350 million people suffer from depression, 46 million from bipolar, 20 million from schizophrenia, 970 million from drug addiction and one person takes to suicide every minute.

White Cane Safety Day: Visually impaired persons task Nigerians on regular eye screening

From Ighomuaye Lucky

The Nigeria Association of the Blind, Edo State chapter, yesterday, called on Nigerians to regularly go for eye check up at least once in a year to avoid blindness.

Mr. Lucky Imafidon, Chairman, Nigeria Association of the Blind, Edo State chapter, made the call during a sensitazition rally to mark the 2021 White Cane Safety Day in Benin.

Addressing Journalists, during the rally, he said the White Cane Safety Day is celebrated all over the world on October 15 every year.

Imafidon said they decided to come out to remind the government to pass the disability bill into law.

“The celebration started long time ago when a joint congress of the United States of America took a resolution which was passed into law known as White Cane Safety Day.

“The day is set aside to sensitize the general public about the right of the blind to use the roads, right to use the walkway, right to quality education and healthcare.

“The visually impaired needs to be catered.

“The blinds in Edo State need to be cared for. We want to inform the general public that the blinds have the right to use the walkway.

“We are also here to let the governor know that the disability bill should be sent to the State House of Assembly so that it can be passed into law and we will not be discriminated against.

“If it is passed into law, there will be a commission that will take care for our needs, preach against discrimination and that commission will be headed by persons who are physically challenged”, he said.

He appreciated the governor for what he is doing for the community of the blind and the handicapped, noting that the present administration has been one of the best for people living with visual disabilities.

“We appreciate his benevolence. It is in this administration that students of institutions of higher learning were given bursary awards.

“It is also in his administration that the blinds were given employments”, he said

He also said that they want the governor to do more, especially in the area of employment because many of them who have qualifications do not have jobs.

” When an educated visually impaired person has no job, it makes him or her not to be useful to the society.

“We need employment for our members.

“We need bursary for those in higher institutions of learning. It is expensive to educate a blind child, therefore we need the support of the government and cooperate organizations to give scholarships to people living with visual disabilities in higher institutions.

“In addition, we want a rehabilitation center where those who cannot afford formal education can be trained informally. Our members of the association of the blind go to other states for training, we want ours to be established in Edo State”, he said.

Man with physical disability ‘Mans’ Lagos State Secretariat With ‘I need job billboard’

A graduate with physical disability in Lagos State, Agosu Fagla, has written an open letter to the state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, seeking his help for a job.

Fagla caught the attention of people when he made a billboard with the inscription, “I need a job” and stood at the gate of the state secretariat at Ikeja.

The notice also contained his Curriculum Vitae.

The young man claimed his disability came from an accident he was involved in at the age of 5. He, however, said this had not limited him.

According to him, he bagged a bachelor’s degree in Economics but had been unable to secure a job due to the stigma.

He wrote, “Sir, I am Agosu Fagla Albert from the Badagry Local Government Area, Lagos State.

“Sir, 8, October 1991, I had a motor accident when going to school at the age of 5. I was then a pupil of Opebi Primary school, Allen, Ikeja, Lagos, under the leadership of the headmaster (Mr T. Adebiyi).

“I was then rushed to Omotayo private hospital, Ikeja. Then, later referred to National orthopedic hospital Igbobi, Lagos where I stayed for a year and later discharged with my right hand paralyzed, up till now i can only make use of the left hand.

“Sir, out of curiosity for learning despite all odds, with the support of God and well-meaning Nigerians; I later proceeded to further my education from basic stage to tertiary level – where I graduated with B.Sc (Ed) (Economics Education) 2014 at the Lagos State University and served at Local Government and chieftaincy affair, Jos North Local Government (Plateau state) from 2014-2015, till now without a meaningful and deserving Job.

“Due to my condition and the stigma attached to it, some employers believe I’m not employable. I have only been surviving on family support. To God be the glory, I have been able to write perfectly with my left hand.

“My Dear Governor sir, I have followed with passion your success stories in Lagos State and your passion for the less privileged.

“I am compelled to contact you through this medium to come to my aide by way an immediate appointment as a bail out of complacency, just so that I can assume a responsible citizen and be a good father despite my condition.

“Thank you sir, in anticipation of your compassionate consideration and God bless you abundantly.”

The state government had yet to react to the request of the man.