MTN Nigeria, Humanitarian Affairs Commemorate Day for Persons with Disabilities
In shaping an enabling and more inclusive society for Persons with Disabilities (PwDs), MTN Nigeria on Tuesday, 3rd December 2019, joined the rest of the world to celebrate the International Day of Persons with Disabilities in Abuja, Nigeria.
The International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPWD) was established by the United Nations in 1992 and observed annually on December 3. The theme for this year’s IDPWD “The Future is Accessible” focuses on creating a future; inclusive, fair, and conducive for persons with disabilities to excel without barriers and restrictions.
The population of Nigerians leaving some sort of disability is estimated to be around 19 million with 4.7 million of them having significant difficulties functioning according to The World Report on Disability 2018.
MTN Nigeria, through the MTN Foundation which was established in 2004 as the social investment arm of the company, has over the years celebrated the International Day of Persons with Disabilities (IDPWD). This year, the company sponsored the event in collaboration with the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management & Social Development.
When urged to speak on the IDPWD commemoration, Minister for Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management & Social Development, Hajiya Sadiya Umar Farouk said, “International Day of Persons with Disabilities is more than a day for reflection for us. It is a rallying call for us to strive towards a more inclusive society. This can only be achieved by collaborative effort; to make our future more accessible to all.”
Also, addressing the guests, Director, MTN Foundation, Dennis Okoro reiterated MTN’s commitment to ensuring persons living with disabilities are not at a disadvantage in society due to their condition. He said “Over 20,000 persons with disabilities have benefitted from MTN Foundation Disability Support Project. In addition, 1200 undergraduate scholarships have been awarded to students in public tertiary institutions under the MTNF Scholarship Scheme for Blind Students. We will continue to collaborate with other agencies and institutions who have this shared vision”
As part of activities to commemorate the day, MTN Foundation donated relief and mobility items, which included braille machines, crutches and elbow pads to name a few, to persons with disabilities through the Federal Ministry Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management & Social Development.
The Minister for Women Affairs, Dame Pauline Tallen who was present at the event commended the MTN Foundation and other private institutions for their relentless support and commitment to improving the plight of PwDs in Nigeria.