The Vice President, Alhaji Sam Sumana over the weekend opened the renovated stage of the Milton Margai School for the Blind.
The stage was earlier built from funds generously donated by Sierra Leone Commercial Bank which was dedicated and handed over to the School on March 15th 2002. With the proud association of Mercury International with the Milton Margai School for the Blind, the stage was renovated.
In his welcome address, the chairman committee of Management, Milton Margai School for the Blind, Rev. Henry C. Samuels gave a brief history of the School which started with three pupils until they moved to their present location in 1958.
He said since then, the Blind School has seen both turbulent and victorious moments. Rev. Samuels specifically stated that the school was founded purposely for blind children. He said that the renovated stage will serve the children in different aspects whilst reminding guests that running a disabled school is a burden.
The UN ERSG Michael Schulenburg briefly remarked that because the country is poor, the school receives most of its funding from donors and it’s because of that, the UN gave a mini bus to the blind school.
He gave hope to the children that whilst he was at the UN office in Iran, one of their best staff was a blind woman who introduced the internet system in Iran.
Peter Penfold of the UK Association for the Milton Margai School for the Blind said his association with the school started at the time he was British High Commissioner to the country and with that he explained that the blind school was linked with another blind school in Kent in the UK. Also, he said tours in the UK have been undertaken by the blind school and in one of the tour, the blind school choir performed at Westminster Abbey becoming the second after the concert done by Sir Elton John on the death of Princess Diana.
The Lebanese community President and chairman of Mercury International, Samir Hassaniyeh narrated some of the corporate social responsibility of the company but appealed to the VP for the waving of tax on donations to the needy.
The VP said the establishment of the blind school has removed the negative view held against the disabled. He cautioned that being blind does not mean un-productivity. He recognized and appreciated the effort of Mercury International and challenged other corporate bodies for their support to the physically challenged.