By Simon Ebegbulem & Davies Iheamnachor
GOVERNOR Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, yesterday, described the National Youth Service Corps, NYSC, scheme as a major unifying factor for the nation, appealing to the Federal Government to ensure it was sustained.
This came as Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State tasked NYSC members to shun unhealthy conducts and be patriotic citizens of the country.
Governor Obasaeki, who spoke during the swearing-in ceremony of the Batch B Corps members at the Orientation Camp in Okada, Ovia North-East Local Government Area of the state, emphasised the need for all Nigerians to support the objectives of the scheme.
Represented by his deputy, Mr. Philip Shaibu, the governor said the scheme had integrated and unified the vast and diverse cultural differences of the country since “our corps members from Hausa, Igbo, Edo, Yoruba, among others, are brought together and sent to serve in different parts of the country irrespective of where they come from. I believe it should be encouraged and fortified by the Federal Government because it has been a huge success.
“It is noteworthy to state that the contributions of the scheme in Edo State has over the years impacted positively on the psyche of our people and have contributed immensely to the development of rural areas through various community development projects. Its contributions can be seen in educational, social and health care delivery services, particularly in the rural areas.
It will interest you to know that here in Edo State, the government has a tradition of rewarding excellence among corps members who distinguish themselves during the service year through the execution of community development services meant to leave their host communities better than they met them.
On his part, Governor Wike spoke during the swearing in ceremony of 2640 Batch B stream II corps members deployed in the state at the NYSC permanent orientation camp, Nonwa/Gbam Tai, Tai Local Government Area of the state.
The governor, who was represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Kenneth Kobani, advised youths to be of good conduct, noting that the reason for the programme is to reorient youths on hardwork.
Wike said: “The one year ahead holds a lot of challenges as you will be required to join the current efforts of government in the mobilization and sensitisation of your host communities toward understanding and embracing our reform programmes.
Your skills and services will be required in our continuous fight against HIV/AIDS scourge, provision of free legal service to the less privileged, sensitisation of the public on fundamental human rights, enhancing the education standard of your host communities, promoting and sustaining healthy environment, promoting and providing medical services to rural dwellers, supporting agro allied activities in your host communities and creating awareness on disaster management among other things.”