President Muhammadu Buhari on Tuesday inaugurated the Comprehensive Special School, Lafia established by the Nasarawa State Government to cater for the educational needs of physically challenged children.
Buhari, while inaugurating the project, said that the institution was a demonstration of the collective ambition to uplift the standard of living of all Nigerians through social investment policies.
“The school will cater for the blind, deaf and people living with other forms of physical challenges; it represents a clear example of our inclusive policy where no child will be left behind.
“The institution is a well thought out initiative to give hope to a key segment of the society that has been ignored and neglected by previous governments.
“We all owe it a duty to help the physically challenged by contributing to their development and self reliance,” the President added.
He stressed that the change philosophy of the present administration would continue to idealise and identify issues critical to the country’s socio-economic development with the view to preferring lasting solutions to them.
The president assured Nigerians that government would intensify commitment towards realizing its cardinal objectives anchored on security, fighting corruption and enhancing economic growth through diversification.
Earlier, Governor Umaru Al-Makura had said that the school was targeted at ensuring inclusiveness in governance by giving opportunities to the vulnerable members of the society.
He said that the school would concentrate on providing individual care to children with learning difficulties and those that are deaf, visually impaired and crippled.
“To ensure maximum benefit and inclusiveness, we have made their education free from primary to tertiary level so as to remove the burden of educational expenses on parents.
“We particularly want to ensure that children with disability are given equal opportunities and empowered to broaden their vision, develop their talents and creativity, and compete favourably with others in all spheres of human endeavours,” he said.
He explained that the school would be affiliated with other centres of excellence for people living with disabilities like Gallaudet University and Perkins University both in the U.S.
Almakura said that the state government had also developed a comprehensive curriculum and modules for the education of children with special needs, noting that such feat was the first of its kind in Nigeria.
“Nasarawa State Government will be glad to avail copies to the Federal Ministry of Education for possible adoption and implementation nationwide,” he said.