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NGO Strategises To Redefine Disability In Children

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A Non-Governmental Organisation, Lifeline Organisation For Children Empowerment (LOCE) has organised the first Nigerian Inclusive Play, PLAG Season 8.
PLAG is an acronym for Play, Learn And Grow.
Speaking with The Tide, the Founder/Executive Director of Lifeline, Ngozi Chukwuka, explained that LOCE exists, operates and functions mainly due to children with disabilities, in a world where all children (especially children with disabilities) have access to a good and quality life.
Mrs Chukwuka said Play Learn And Grow (PLAG) is one of its programmes that had run successfully in the last eight years.
Chukwuka explained that it was their own way of responding to the global agenda of ‘Leave no One Behind,’ as every child matters as well deserves to play.
She added that the success stories recorded from PLAG had been overwhelming and phenomenal as many kids had gotten a redefinition of what disability is all about as well exposing many parents to understand what a disadvantage child is all about too.
According to her, over the years, the organisation has made parents to look away kids look away from the seeming limitations on the outside of their kids and explore the limitless man on the inside; on the premise that the man that is really handicapped is the man that has refused to explore his inner strength.
She said such knowledge informed their different themes over the years.
She stated that this year, they considered the theme: Wired to lead” to drive home the truth, “Leadership is not answering a title but bridging the gaps. A leader is one that identifies a gap and closes it. He identifies a problem and mobilizes resources towards solving it.
“We are crafted by God to be the answer to the world’s problems. There is an exact problem we all are meant to solve. I encourage every child to activate the leader in him. No one should exclude himself or be excluded in leadership on the bases of physical disability, because disability is in the mind,” she charged.
According to her, “About 15% of the global populations live with some form of disability; of those, 2–4% experience significant difficulties in functioning.
“A World Health Organization source maintains that about 40% of Africa’s population consists of people with disabilities, including 10-15 percent of school-age children. Global disability is on the rise due to population ageing and the rapid spread of chronic diseases.
“According to 2016 population estimates, the population of Rivers State is 7,303,900, using the universal estimate of 10% of any population being made of children with disabilities, over 730,390 will be living with disabilities of various categories in Rivers State alone, although there are no accurate records in the state of people living with disabilities, people with disabilities continue to live with great physical, social, economic and attitudinal barriers in their daily lives,” Chukwuka added.
The Tide reports that PLAG is held yearly to mark the International Day of People with Disabilities worldwide, through PLAG.
LOCE advocates the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and creates awareness of the role of these goals in building a more inclusive and equitable world for children with disabilities. It is an inclusive play that provides equal opportunity for all children to play.

By: Susan Serekara-Nwikhana

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Rivers

Group Commends Fubara Over N4bn Disbursement To Youths

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The Supreme Council for Sim (Worldwide) has Commended Rivers State Governor, Siminalayi Fubara, for the successful disburserment of N4 billion to over 3,000 youth entrepreneurs in Rivers State.
They said the gesture will boost industrialisation in the State, and also create thousands of employment opportunities for youths in the state.
Chairman of the group, Ambassador Oji G. Ngofa, who gave the commendation in Port Harcourt, while addressing newsmen, said “the disbursement to over 3,000 entrepreneurs in Rivers State and also hosting of Rivers State Economic and Investment Submit 2024 has not only attracted investments and created employment opportunities, but also showcased the numerous investment potentials to the outside world”.
According to Ambassador Ngofa, the summit particularly has also explored the prospects of education, especially youth education for digital economy.
He also commended the Governor on what he called the Governor’s “other achievements” as Governor of Rivers State and for his successful one year in office.
The council reeled out some of these achievements within the past one year to include the promotion of civil servants after more than eight years of stagnation, payment of workers’ salary, pensioners arrears, the successful commencement of work on the Port Harcourt Ring Road, the ongoing construction of the Aleto-Ebubu Road in Eleme Local Government, the completion of the Andoni section of the Ogoni-Andoni Road, and many more.
Members of the Supreme Council for Sim also pledged their unwavering support and dedication to Governor Fubara as they celebrate him on his one year anniversary.
The council further commended the Governor for growing the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state from N11billion to N28billion, describing it as one of the best things that has happened to the State.
It called on all Rivers people to give their full and unflinching support to the Governor.

By: Okere Sincere & Dudu Celine

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Rivers

‘God Anointed Fubara To Succeed Wike As Rivers Gov’

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A Chieftain of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Opobo/Nkoro, Ward 5, Warisenibo Tonye Fubara, has said, God anointed Sir Siminalayi Fubara to succeed the former Governor of the state and Minister of the Federal Capital Territory, Nyesom Wike, as Governor for “the task of liberating the people from political slavery, deception, nepotism, sectionalism and an era of amassing Rivers people’s resources and wealth to stupor at the detriment of the people”.
Speaking recently in Opobo, shortly after the commissioning of Corpers’ Lodge built by the administration of Dr. Enyiada CookeyGam, Fubara said he was confident in the ability of the Governor to rapidly develop the state, especially the rural communities, abandoned by successive administrations, describing the emergence of Fubara as the will of God and not that of any man.
The PDP chieftain, a grassroots mobiliser, admonished Rivers people to always support the untiring efforts of the administration to be able to provide the yearned democracy dividends denied them in years back.
On the over N19 billion Opobo-Epellema Road project, Senibo Fubara lauded the development doggedness and foresight of the Governor towards providing quality service to the masses, adding that when completed, the road will boost economic growth in the catchment communities.
“The one year revolutionary and aggressive transformation of the State via people-oriented development projects, as championed by the Siminalayi Fubara-led dispensation, such as the over N225 billion Trans- Kalabari Road, the N195billion Port-Harcourt Ring Road, the just-commissioned Andoni Section of the Ogoni-Andoni-Opobo Unity Road projects, among others, can stand the test of time”, he stated.

By: Bethel Toby

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Rivers

Network Makes Case For ATM, Gender-Based Violence In Nigeria

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A Civil Society Organisation (CSO), TB Network, has called for more commitments in efforts made to address the barriers to HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis, Malaria (ATM), and Gender-Based Violence (GBV) in Nigeria.
The State Focal Person, Tuberculosis (TB), Rivers State, Mr. Messiah Fyneface Muzan, who made the call, Thursday, in a media parley in Port Harcourt, profered a seven-point agenda towards this end.
In his presentation, sub-titled, “Call To Action: Addressing HIV, TB, Malaria and Gender-Based Violence in Nigeria”, Muzan said, to advance the fight against HIV, TB, Malaria, and Gender-Based Violence in Nigeria, one of the key things for relevant authorities to do is for the National Health Insurance programme enjoyed by the formal sector to be extended to others, particularly the poor and most vulnerable.
According to him, this is because, “the poor often are less educated and unemployed, and consequently lack the ability to pay out-of-pocket for high costs associated with frequent illnesses”.
He also said, “funding and finances for Primary Health delivery should be carefully mapped out and sanctioned against any misappropriation or mismanagement, to enable a robust public health programme at all Ward levels in the Local Government.
“Communication and education programmes, he said, can raise knowledge and awareness, and, in turn, improve testing and care-seeking”.
He said this is because of the need to “educate, engage, and empower the communities to embrace any behaviour change relevant to achieving success in HIV, TB, and malaria control in Nigeria “.
The State Focal Person on TB further said every Ward should commit to health promotion and education programmes to increase awareness of prevention measures, and promote community participation, while adhering to evidence-based strategies.
Other proposals by the State TB Network boss are: “commit adequate resources through advocacy and partnerships for the full and effective implementation of planned interventions, including through involvement of the private sector and community participatory approaches.
“Community members should actively support and advocate their local Primary Health Care Centers (PHCs). Community involvement is crucial in ensuring sustainability and effectiveness of these centres.
“Additionally, community support can manifest through volunteering, donating resources, or participating in advocacy efforts to secure increased funding amd resource for PHCs”.
On Gender-Based Violance and gender human rights, he noted that they occur through such forms as domestic abuse, verbal aggression, physical violence, early and forced marriages, incest, Female Genital Cutting (FGC), acid attacks, and outright killings, saying women, men, boys and girls “continue to endure degradation and deprivation in both public and private spaces”.
For the stated reasons, he said, “the Civil Society for the Eradication of TB in Nigeria calls on all stakeholders to combat the rising cases of GBV in our society.
“We implore every citizen not to remain silence. Let us unite our efforts to eradicate this menace from our nation. If you witness something, please speak out”.

By: Soibi Max-Alalibo

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