UNTIL HE MET NIGERIAN SUPERSTAR, Flavour Nabania, in March and wooed him to his corner by singing nearly all of his songs, Seimah G. Weifur was just an ordinary 11-year old disabled boy who was born blind and may probably never be able to see the color of the leaves on the trees or have an idea what his favorite color looks like.
MEETING FLAVOUR HAD been the agonizing wish of Seimah whose only dream is to be a musician and luckily for him, a fairy godmother came in Julie Endee who brought the star to Liberia and saw to it the lad met and felt his idol.
GOING A STEP FURTHER, the Nigerian superstar has further raised the hope of the disabled boy for a brighter future by inviting him over to Nigeria to record the last song on his newly minted album, Ijele the Traveler.
ACCORDING TO THE 2008 census report by the Liberia Institute of Statistics and Geo-Information Services (LISGIS), people with disabilities represent 16% of the country’s population.
THEY ARE OFTEN MARGINALIZED and discriminated against, making it difficult to impossible to gain access to education, jobs, and health and market services. Disabled people even faced a harder time during the getting their needs during the Ebola epidemic which hit during mid-2014.
THE DISABLED IS THE MOST overlooked marginal group in the country. Their needs are often and repeatedly not taken care of. On every street corner at the traffic light, they are seen with kids who should be in school but are being used as breadwinners.
POLICYMAKERS HAVE virtually ignored them. Across the country, some of the basic inalienable rights entitled to every human being have been stripped off. How many schools for the blind are across the country? If there are, do the schools have Braille which they can effectively learn on?
WHEN HAS BEEN THE last time have they been invited to a hearing on matters relating to them thereof?
YET WHILE THERE IS A NATIONAL Commission on Disabilities (NCD) and the Group of 77, it hasn’t always met the hope and aspiration of folks such as Seimah. There always seem to be an endless fight over allocations in the budget to cater for the disabled community.
THE NCD AND THE GROUP OF 77, and by extension the Government of Liberia, has failed the country’s disabled community. No roof to cover their head at night, no food to eat, lack of opportunities amongst other – O God, do they deserve this?
AND SO AS FLAVOUR HAS TAKEN young Seimah under his wing, we beseech the superstar to love him like a father and if possible adopt him, open up the opportunities his country wouldn’t have provided, show him the abstract world he has envisaged, nurture him so that he may be able to achieve his dreams, never allow him to forget his roots, educate him so that he gets to be a role model for others in the disabled community of Liberia.
THE HOPE OF A COUNTRY which failed him is hinged on the break you’re about to give him.