KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 12 – In optimising the utilisation of human capital nationwide, the private sector has been urged to help provide employment opportunities for the physically-disadvantaged (OKU). Federal Territories Minister Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor said it would be a waste of resources if the physically-disadvantaged, whose number stood at 498,906 as of February, were not absorbed into the workforce.

He said, by providing job opportunities, companies would be able to assist the government in giving OKU a purpose in life. “I propose companies accept the OKU in the workforce and help them make a living,” he said when officiating the Sentuhan Kasih ceremony organised by the Federal Territories Foundation (YWP), in collaboration with corporate firms here today.

Tengku Adnan, who is also YWP chairman, said based on the Social Welfare Department statistics, the number of OKU employed in the public sector rose  to 1,754 as of December 2012 compared to 1,294 in 2009. According to Labour Department statistics, a total of 13,339 had registered with the Disabled Placement System for the private sector, with 9,074 successfully employed.

On the ceremony today, Tengku Adnan said several corporations contributed a total RM135,000 which would be channelled to outstanding and successful OKU students, athletes, entrepreneurs, special education schools, community-based rehabilitation centres and special education units of the Federal Territories’ Department of Education.

A recipient, N. Divya Darshini, 14, an OKU with hearing and speech difficulties of Sekolah Kebangsaan Pendidikan Khas, Jalan Peel, gave the thumbs-up to show her delight.

Her father, K. Narendran, 48, told Bernama that he was honoured to receive the contribution from the foundation for the first time as it meant a lot to him in funding Divya Darshini’s schooling. “Thank you, Divya is very happy and as a father, I cannot be happier. The money will be put to good use in educating her,” he said.

Nation News

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