NAB, WIPO to convert books for blind persons in Abia



By Leonard Okachie

The Nigerian Association of the Blind (NAB), in partnership with the World Intellectual Property Organisation, says it is set to convert textbooks into accessible formats for blind persons in Abia.

The President of NAB, Mr Stanley Onyebuchi, said this when the group paid a courtesy visit to the Special Assistant to Gov. Alex Otti on Disability Matters, Mr David Anyaele, in Umuahia on Friday.

Onyebuchi said that Abia was one of the benefitting states for the project that intended to make books accessible to print-disabled persons.

L-R: NAB President, Mr Stanley Onyebuchi with the Special Assistance to the Governor on Disability Matters, Mr David Anyaele.


He said that only the textbooks approved by the state Ministry of Education would be converted into the accessible formats.

“We are also going to provide some of these assisting devices, which will enable the students to access these books, in various formats that they would be converted into.

“We are here to let you know that in no distant time, we are going to provide those assisting devices through your office,” Onyebuchi said.

He also used the opportunity to appeal to the State Government to provide a braille press centre as well as mobility aid for the members.

He said the association was in dire need of the centre “because education is key to the success of persons with disabilities (PWDs), especially the blind”.

Also, the state Chairman of NAB, Mr Isaac Williams, said that the association had requested for the braille press centre and a bus during the past administrations in the state but did not succeed.

“Many blind civil servants cannot have access to civil service manual and other government publications because they were not prepared in braille.

“We need the bus so that we can take this crusade of rehabilitation to blind persons in the rural communities,” Williams said.

Responding, Anyaele commended NAB for deeming the state worthy to benefit from its laudable project.

He assured the group that the government would offer all the necessary support to ensure that “Abia component of the project is exceptional and turns to a reference point for other states”.

He promised to present the group’s requests to the governor and urged the members to continue to support the present government’s effort toward rebuilding the state.

According to him, the governor is deliberate on the inclusion of PWDs in governance.

“He has demonstrated this by ensuring that a robust disability-inclusion budget is given to the people of Abia.

“Abia Government has a budget for the rehabilitation and integration of the PWDs – the first of its kind since 32 years of the state,” Anyaele said.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the NAB president was accompanied on the visit by the officials of the state chapter of the association. (NAN)