Fri. Jul 12th, 2024


The Special Assistant to the Abia State Governor Alex Otti on People with Disability, Mr. David Anyaele, has reaffirmed the preparedness of the government to ensure that access to quality education and healthcare services are enhanced to benefit the Cerebral Palsy, children including other Persons With Disabilities, PWDS.

Pix: A cross section of participants.

Speaking in Umuahia, during The Straight Child Foundation, TSCF special March edition of the Parent Support Group to mark the year 2024 Cerebral Palsy, CP awareness month with the theme, “Being all that you can be”, Mr. Anyaele, who observed that the society has made life difficult for PWDS, tying disability to a lot of factors to victimize, humiliate and isolate victims, tasked parents of children with CP to continue to create awareness and to support the government to ensure that stigmatization, discrimination among other barriers against their children are removed.

He pointed out that the dedication of over 20 and 15 per cent of the budget to education and health, respectively, did not only underscored the government’s prioritization of the social sector and/but also aligned with the Governor Otti-led administration’s vision to ensure access to quality education and healthcare services for the citizens including the persons with Cerebral palsy.

Anyaele, who went on to narrate the challenges he faced when he lost his two hands and how he was able to combat and defeat the challenges, pointed out that disability is not about disadvantaged, hence the need for the parents to support their CP children attain greater heights in life.

Pix: Mr. David Anyaele.

“I must commend The Straight Child Foundation for this cerebral palsy awareness event. Issues that have to do with Cerebral palsy is silent in Abia State, Nigeria and in most countries. It is only when there is a forum like this that we will be able to escalate and give them and their parents the voice to share their experiences, so that the society will be able to understand approaches and best ways to support them.

“The outcome documents from this meeting should be shared with me to guide us in terms of areas of intervention, so that we will not implement amiss. I believe together we will be able to find solutions to some of these issues

He disclosed that the wife of the governor of Abia State, Mrs. Priscilla Otti, recently launched data capturing of Persons With Disabilities (PWDs) in the state, aimed at having accurate data of people living with disabilities in the state and at the same time to embark on better plan for them so that nobody in the state is left behind.

He further reassured Gov. Otti administration’s commitment to promoting inclusive society, and making life easier for PWDS and their families.

Speaking also, Dr. Chidomere Roseann, Consultant Pediatrician/Child neurologist, Federal Medical Centre, Umuahia, who espoused and expounded the theme of the Year 2024 CP awareness month, “What Do You See When You Look at Me: Look Closer See Differently”, encouraged parents on early detection and intervention, to enable the Cerebral palsy child overcome the disability and actualize his or her potential in life.

She said since CP is a lifelong condition, their target of treatment is to manage the symptoms with the aim of minimizing the progressing disability, relieve pain, and maximize independence to achieve a long, healthy life.

Earlier in a remark, the TSCF founder, Dr. Peace Amaraegbulam, who is a consultant orthopedic surgeon at the Federal Medical Centre Umuahia,

Pix: Dr. Mrs Peace Amaraegbulam.

She said that the month of March Cerebral Palsy Awareness offered the parents of CP children, those living with it and citizens the avenue to come together to raise awareness and also show support for individuals living with cerebral palsy.

On why individuals and communities were encouraged to wear green (GoGreen4CP campaign), Dr. Amaraegbulam, explained that colour green symbolizes hope, growth, and renewal, reflecting the resilience and strength of individuals living with CP.

Mr. Dinichukwu Olise, a fourth (4th) year medical scholar at Gregory University, Uturu, GUU and also living with Cerebral palsy, shared his success/motivational story during the event which saw to the nomination of the representatives of parents into TSCF CP awareness campaign; and also the distribution of gift items to children.

Cerebral palsy is a group of neurological disorders that affect movement, posture, and muscle coordination. It is caused by abnormal brain development or damage to the developing brain, usually before birth. Individuals with CP may experience a range of symptoms, including muscle stiffness, weakness, and difficulties with balance and coordination.

While CP is a lifelong condition, early intervention and therapy can significantly improve quality of life and functional abilities.


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