Moved by the plights of Nigerians, especially those suffering from eye diseases; glaucoma and cataracts, the United Arab Emirates, has disclosed plans to train ophthalmologists and optometrists to treat 7.8 million people.
Already, it said that in October 2019, it established a $2 million programme for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Katsina, while over 22, 000 Nigerians have so far, reaped from the scheme.
Its Ambassador to Nigeria, His Excellency, Fahad Obaid Al Taffaq, stated this yesterday in Abuja, when he visited the Nigeria’s Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Saidya Umar Farouq.
According to a statement released by the ministry’s Assistant Director, Information, Rhoda Ishaku Iliya, he said: “In October 2019, the Embassy established 2million dollar programme for the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) in Katsina, it was planned, funded and implemented in Daura and other areas in Katsina State.
“The plan was to upgrade the equipment in the primary health centres to tackle eye diseases, glaucoma and cataracts. We have also started the programme with this initiative to train eye doctors, ophthalmologists and optometrists.
“We anticipate the initiative to impact more than 7.8 million people in the North who are suffering from eye diseases. I hope also that we can do similar programmes with the Ministry by identifying the needs of each component of the Ministry and how we can collaborate.”
Regardless, Farouq, noted that Federal Government is open to more partnership in the areas of humanitarian affairs, disaster management and social development.
She said the three specific components are areas the Ministry would need technical support to actualise its mandate including the Social Intervention Programmes (SIP); School Feeding Programme, Conditional Cash Transfer, N-Power and GEEP.
“We also need support in the area of empowerment of our displaced and vulnerable population in the society” the Minister added.
Finally, she commended the Embassy of the UAE for supporting the government of Nigeria in humanitarian issues and looked forward to more collaborations in the years ahead.