Precious Mbajiorgu has been crowned the best physically challenged candidate in the 2022 West African School Certificate Examination, WASCE.
Precious said she took the examination last year, and she was contacted four weeks ago and given the award in Lafia, Nasarawa state.
Narrating how she got blind, Precious told Punch Newspaper that it happened when she was 11 years old. According to her, she was solving mathematics in class, and her eyes suddenly went dark, and she was never able to see afterwards.
Her words: “I was not born blind. I used to see perfectly when I was a child until I turned 11. It happened between 2007 and 2008, but I cannot remember the exact day. I just went to school that fateful day. Back then, I was a pupil at Awada Primary School, Obosi, near Onitsha. It was in that school that I became visually impaired. My classmates and I were in the classroom solving mathematics on the board. I had answered the first maths question and was about to go to the next question when suddenly, I discovered that I could not see the board anymore and could no longer see other things. Everywhere became dark.”
She struggled for many years and later abandoned her studies due to her blindness. She said she visited many hospitals, but no reason could be adduced for the illness. It was later that some foreign doctors who visited her village diagnosed her with glaucoma.
She said: “I visited many hospitals, and after diagnosis, the doctors told me that there was nothing wrong with my sight and that they did not see any defect, yet I could not see with my eyes. That was how I managed the situation till I got to SS2 in 2012 and could not go further. So, I stopped going to school until 2018 when a group of evangelists came to my place and told me about Oji River Special Education Centre. They took me there where I took remedial courses using learning equipment such as typewriters and other technological tools and after that, I enrolled at St John of God Secondary School in Awka where I started from SS1 to complete my secondary education.”
Precious, who is currently a 100-level student of Guidance and Counselling, said she never expected to be named the best physically challenged candidate in WAEC.
Her words: “I took the SSCE, National Examination Council exam and the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination last year. My visual impairment delayed me and prompted me to enrol on remedial courses to perfect my use of reading with study aids. I felt happy and excited and each time I think about it, I ask myself whether it is real. Before then, I had already received the 2022 Best Art Student award at St. John of God Secondary School, so when the WAEC award came, it made me very happy and made me feel that my hard work paid off.”