The Minister of State for Industry, Trade and Investment, Amb. Mariam Yalwaji Katagum has reaffirmed committment of the Federal Government to support people living with disabilities in the country.
The Minister stated this when she received in audience a delegation from the Network of the Disabled Women led by the National Secretary, Mary Omoyeme Musa in her office in Abuja today.
The Minister said the President Buhari led- administration is passionate about the well being of people with disabilities which led to the creation of the National Commission for Persons with Disabilities to address their various challenges and mainstream them for better inclusion in the policies and programmes of Government.
Amb. Katagum further explained that a lot is being done by the Federal government to support people with disabilities, citing, the allocation of five percent in every track of the MSMEs Survival Fund which was meant to cushion the effect of COVID-19 on MSMEs to people with living with disabilities by the present administration.
Amb.Katagum also noted that the Federal Executive Council always ensure that every memo on new office building that comes to the council for consideration accomodates relevant structures to serve people living with disabilities.
The Minister also made it known that her Ministry has a Gender Unit with mandate to address issues relating to women especially in business and trade with due consideration to women living with disabilities.
While urging the delegation to leverage on the training opportunities that abound in the Ministry through its parastatals such as Industrial Training Fund (ITF), Small and Medium Enterprises Development Agency of Nigeria (SMEDAN) among others, she noted that the Industrial Training Fund has about sixty vocational skills training with certification and starter packs.
The Minister acknowledged efforts of the Network of the Disabled Women and advised that a lot of advocacy programmes should be carried out among their various groups in order to tap into various government’s policies and programmes.
Earlier in her remarks, the National Secretary Network of the Disabled Women and leader of the delegation, Mary Omoyeme Musa said that the purpose of their visit was to introduce the organization and seek for collaboration with the Ministry particularly in areas of mainstreaming into developmental programmes, training in business and trade opportunities ,among others.
The Deputy Director, Gender Unit in the Ministry, Mrs. Achinam Chioma Fidel in her closing remarks acknowledged the willingness of the Network of the Disabled Women to be involved in the Ministry’s programmes and expressed the readiness of the Ministry to work with the organisation