Thursday, 15 March 2018

Update as Deaf community solicits federal govt’s support to establish deaf university

It is gathered that the Deaf Community in Nigeria on Wednesday in Abuja, called for the support of the Federal Government to establish special university for the over 17 million deaf people in the country.
Dr Khadijat Rashid, team leader of the association for the deaf in Abuja, made the call when some members of the association paid courtesy visit to the Minister of State for Education, Prof. Anthony Anwukah.
Rashid also the Dean, School of Education, Business and Human Services, Gallaudet University, Washington, said the establishment of the university was important to help the hearing impaired citizens have access to learning in the country.
She said many deaf people, who were Nigerians, were opportuned to work with the Wesley University owned by the Methodist Church, Nigeria.
“We want the Nigerian government to establish deaf universities in Nigeria that will help the over 17 million deaf citizens service their needs.
“We therefore seek the efforts and support of the ministry and the Nigerian government to
meet the yearnings of the special people in our nation.”
Rashid, however, appealed to the National Assembly to pass the disability bill before it, saying the bill has been in the Senate for the past 15 years without any development to its passage.
Earlier, Registrar, Joint Admission and Matriculation Board (JAMB), Prof. Ishaq Oloyede, said the team had met with the board’s officials and that of the National Universities Commission (NUC) to fine tune their demand.

Oloyede, who also corroborated the association’s demand, said there was need for the Federal Government to renew its commitment in support for the centre for the deaf in the country.

He said that the establishment of a deaf centre in Ilorin for over 30 years needed to come alive for the deaf citizens to actualise their dreams.
He added that after the establishment of the centres in Ilorin, funding had been stopped which influenced the call for its resuscitation.
Oloyede added that the establishment of such centres in five other geopolitical zones of the country would go a long way in meeting their needs.
He said there would be need to establish and have signers in centres at the University of Maiduguri, University of Nigeria, University of Ibadan, University of Calabar and Bayero University.
“Some universities like the Bayero university and the university of calabar are doing well as the schools has graduated students but with pain as there were no signers to interpret for them.
“We agreed at the meeting with them that other established centres need signers just as it had in the centre in University of Ilorin”.
In his response, the minister of state for education, Prof. Anthony Anwukah, urged the association to tidy up and perfect every document with the NUC to enable it act quickly on their demands.
The minister, therefore, pledged the ministry’s support for the initiative while calling on the university of Wesley to encourage Nigerians who had studied abroad to return home.
He also pledged that the ministry would work with the National Assembly liaison officer to ensure the passage of the disability bill.

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