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Group pledges support on infrastructure, education others on Esanland

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By Esther Onyegbula

In a bid to improve the standard of living of the people of Esanland, a non-governmental organisation, under the auspice of Esan Development and Transformation Initiative (EDATI) has pledged commitment towards supporting the indigenes of Esan through its various empowerment programmes.

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The organisation through its chairman, Pastor Ituah Ighodalo, of Esan Central part of Edo State, also reiterated its interest to invest and improve the quality of life in Edo Central as well as executing community investment projects.

Ighodalo who made the disclosure in Lagos at the ‘Fund Raising Project and Soft Launch’ said, “Our greatest vision is to help and develop the welfare of the Esan people as well as ensuring continuity in development regardless of government supports.

He explained, “I come from Esan land and I have always been interested in development, not just of Esan land or Edo State but Nigeria as a whole, and that is why I showed interest when I was approached”.

Ighodalo further urged Nigerians to participate in Nation building rather than sitting on defence.  “I have initiated something similar programs in my mother’s hometown, Oke-Igbo, which we called the Oke-Igbo Development Association.

“Over the last two years, we have been raising funds and sourcing for more conmmitted membership and free donations. Sometime, mid last year, we did our first project in Esan land, as we gave out 10,000 text books to different schools, five generator sets to police stations (one generator per station) and solar power light to five clinics.

“We saw that our people need good roads, scholarships, healthcare, employment, school equipment and many things that somehow government has not been able to provide.

Also speaking, Dr. Dorry Afe Okojie, Vice Chairman of EDATI added that the organization is keen to humanitarian services following the realisation that the government cannot do everything.

Okojie also said the organisation will push for learning and promoting cultural activities aswell as indigenous languages. “We have our children in the plan, whereby we can have them together to learn and speak our language by organising a program, maybe once in a year and get them acquitted with our culture.

However, Mr. Mathew Ibadin, the Secretary of the group and one of the delegates of EDATI, who distributed materials to people in Esan community, said the experience was amazing.

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Ibadin said, “I count it as a privilege because the level of poverty witnessed cannot be explained on the pages of newspapers. Some people could not write in schools because of lack of books

“When we got to the hospitals to supply the solar energy, the story was nothing to write home. Also, while we went to distribute books at the schools, the pupils and principals were amazed, however, calling for more supports from other organizations.”

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