General Secretary drums support for deaf, other physically challenged
The General Secretary and Chief Executive Officer, The Bible Society of Nigeria (BSN), Pastor Samuel Sanusi, has called on various churches, the government, as well as well meaning Nigerians to support both morally and financially, the Society in its effort to give hope to the physically challenged including the blind, the deaf and many of who are greatly talented, but are denied attention.
He added that with BSN giving some of them a little exposure, it has been proved that there is ability in disability.
Sanusi, who during a facility tour with the media to BSN Deaf Translation Centre, Ibadan, Oyo State, the first of its kind in Africa, disclosed that the society in collaboration with the Deaf Opportunity Outreach International, Kenya and Presbyterian Church, started a project to meet the spiritual and mental need of the deaf with a view to restoring to them a full life and also grant them the opportunity to display their inherent talents.
He said that the collaboration culminated in the unveiling of the first Nigerian Sign Language Bible for the deaf and that the Deaf Bible Translation was far more expensive than the regular Bible, with cost of over N80 million.
He expressed happiness that the BSN could now meet the spiritual needs of the deaf, the blind and the sighted though there was still a long way to go adding that he firmly believed that the challenged one way or the other is part of humanity, who should not be left out in the scheme of things.
Sanusi charged the churches and various Christian organisations, including Christian Association of Nigeria to wake up and support BSN as it is certain that without the Bible, which is the main instrument to reach out to the world, the work of evangelisation committed to the church cannot be done succinctly.
He added that the commitment of BSN to making the Word of God available to all Nigerians must be the same commitment of the various Churches and Christian organisations, the government and well meaning Nigerians.
“According to the global Bible distribution published by the United Bible Societies, The Bible Society of Nigeria is leading the world in English Bible distribution, having distributed 897,166 copies of the English Bible in 2020. The Society of Australia came a distant second with a distribution figure of 426,318 followed by the United States of America (USA) with 403,210, China 157,946, Kenya 109,807 and South Africa, 96,257.
“In ranking by region, Africa came third out of the seven areas/regions of the United Bible Societies in full Bible distribution. Central and South America came first, distributing 11.1million full Bibles, followed by Asia with 6.2million, Africa 5.9million, Europe 5.1million, North America 1.7 million, Oceania 0.64million and Middle East 0.17 million. Out of the 5.9million distributed by Africa, Nigeria did 1.5million copies or 25.42 per cent of over 40 Bible Societies in Africa distributed,” he said.
Sanusi remarked that with the above revelations, various Churches and Christian irganisations in Nigeria should see reasons for coming to the aid of BSN to reach not just the world, but the challenged ones in our country because quite often, when policies are formulated, no one speaks for them and their interests are not considered.