By Dennis Agbo
ENUGU- Some residents of Enugu State have been empowered by both federal and state lawmakers from the area to improve their wellbeing.
One of such is the programme by Hon. Dennis Amadi of Udi/Ezeagu Federal Constituency, who last weekend gave out items such as sewing machines, motorcycles, solar power lights, power generating sets, grinding machines and a compilation of 30 years WAEC past question papers and answers for education support.
Amadi said it was to ensure that his people developed their entrepreneurial skills that he facilitated their training in different skills including commercial agriculture. Some were trained in deep sea welding by the Metallurgical Training Institute, Onitsha, after which they also received seed grants as start-ups.
Similarly, the Chairman, House of Representatives Committee on Works, Rep. Toby Okechukwu, donated dynamic mobile science laboratories to some secondary schools in Aninri/Awgu/Oji River Federal Constituency.
Okechukwu also donated thousands of educational desks to the post-primary schools in the constituency, noting that he was encouraged by the efforts of Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi and Senator Ike Ekweremadu to make the donations.
Okechukwu said that in recent times, he has been paying WAEC fees for students in his constituency where along the line, he noticed that the students lacked desks. He also recalled providing science kits to secondary schools but again realised that science equipment were prone to upgrades which made him go for the modern mobile science laboratories.
Okechukwu disclosed that the students were trained by the Scientific Educational Development Institute, SEDI, in Enugu on the uses of the modern equipment.
In the same manner, succour came the way of women and youths of Umunonu-Umuezeani, Ugwogo-Nike community in Enugu East Local Government Area of Enugu State, when the member representing them in the state House of Assembly, Hon. Joseph Ugwumba Agbo offered them N5 million interest-free loans for farming, trading as well as skills acquisition, recently.
The beneficiaries made up of 81 rural women, received the sum to boost their farming and trading activities, while 21 youths would be deployed to learn different trades such as building skills, auto repairs, welding and fabrication, among other skills.
Ugwumba said he was motivated to make the donation going by the needs of the people as contained in the Visit Every Community, VEC, report of the state government.
He said it was meant to dissuade the women from selling sachet water on the streets and get back to farming; while the youths would acquire skills instead of selling land as has been their habit in some communities in his local government area.
Speaking during the National Assembly members’ assignments at Nnewe and Udi, respectively, the Deputy Senate President, Senator Ike Ekweremadu noted that the lawmakers were the pride of their constituents and charged the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the items.
Governor Ugwuanyi who was present at Hon. Amadi’s empowerment programme in Udi encouraged the lawmakers on their roles in complementing the efforts of the state in reducing poverty at the grassroots.
Chairman of Ugwogo-Nike community’s cooperative society, Mr. Cajetan Oko described Ugwumba as a visionary leader who is desirous of reducing poverty and restiveness among women and youths of the community.
He said that with the empowerment, the community in the next five years, would produce more skilled and educated people.
One of the women leaders in Ugwogo-Nike, Mrs. Theresa Edeonu expressed appreciation on behalf of the women, noting that it was the first of its kind in the community.
She recalled that Hon. Ugwumba had earlier brought a Non-Governmental Organisation, Women for Women, that has greatly empowered the community’s women.
Another community leader in Ugwogo, Mr. Emeka Agbo said that the skills acquisition would help reduce poverty and crime in the society and urged other leaders to emulate the lawmaker. Agbo noted that Ugwumba had led the community for over 40 years with no record of having sold any land even as his rival engaged in land speculation.