Deputy Speaker, Kalu Embarks On National Action Against Blindness Project
Benjamin Kalu Foundation in collaboration with Vision Saver Eye Care Limited has kicked off a National Action Against Blindness Project, organizing a three-day medical outreach in Bende Federal Constituency of Abia State.
The Foundation which is the brainchild of the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Benjamin Okezie Kalu held the outreach in Bende LGA from 13th to 15th October, 2023.
A statement signed by his special assistant on press affairs Udora Orizu, stated that the outreach was essentially aimed towards providing free community eye care services, treatment, and medical services to the constituents.
The exercise witnessed a massive turnout of constituents who needed medical attention for their eyes with over 1200 people receiving medications, medical eye glasses, and cataract surgeries.
The medical team, consisting of highly skilled Opticians, doctors and medical professionals, worked tirelessly to ensure that each patient received the necessary treatment and care.
Speaking, when he received progress report from the team, the Deputy Speaker, Kalu emphasized that the project is not just for Bende Federal Constituency but for the entire nation as well.
According to him, the outreach will be extended to other parts of the country.
Tasking on the need to double the impact during the next session, the Deputy Speaker also assured of his continued support.
Kalu said, “The beauty of Nigeria that a man from the North will identify with me, and the problems of my people in the South East, and abandoned his comfort in the north, relocated to the south East my place, spend time with my people to be able to solve their problem of blindness. It’s the type of Nigeria we are looking for, a Nigerian that knows that the pain in the southeast is the pain in the north, and that we are all connected to one another and we must be bothered with what is bothering one another.
“I’m proud of the vision savers, the cost analysis was good, their response time good, their professionalism good, the impact is massive. We wanted to treat 1000 people and you ended up treating 1200 plus. And I want to thank my team from the office, Chief Daniel Akwari for monitoring this from the start to finish. I’m promising you, because you left a lot of people unattended to, we have to go back, and we will keep going back until we resolve the issue of blindness in Bende, in Abia, in South East and in Nigeria.
“I will make sure it becomes one of my constituency projects to take care of these ones. Last time I did national health insurance scheme for them and we captured thousands of them to be receiving treatment. But this one the impact is immediate, from the eye surgery, we should be looking at how should we take care of dental issue of my people. How do we take care of malaria and other health issues, as their representative, it’s one of my concerns.
“We will go to the north, I’m going to be sending you to go to Kaduna state, under my sponsorship, you will go to Zaria where my Speaker comes from and look at the challenges there, I do it to celebrate my relationship with the Speaker. To take care of his people as well, he’s like a big brother, he’s a good leader. Thank you for this mission and may the almighty God bless you and enlarge you. We will partner with you for the four years I’m in this office, to help place joy on the lips of the people that will be present. I want you to go back in two weeks time and your action plan is to do review of what you have done and then you do another set. This time around let’s target 2000, the number needs to be doubled.”
In their separate remarks, beneficiaries from the 3-day program appreciated the Deputy Speaker for the kind gestures and prayed for God’s protection and guidance as he continues to lead the constituency and also contribute to nation-building.
Udora Orizu, Special Assistant on Press Affairs to the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Federal Republic of Nigeria