A rights group, Committee for the Defence of Human Rights (CDHR), on Sunday donated 20 bags of rice to indigent widows in Abakiliki, the Ebonyi capital, for Christmas celebration.
The group also organised a party for the widows as part of the activities it lined up for this year’s Yuletide celebrations.The state Chairman of CDHR in Ebonyi, Mr Emeka Anosike, said that the gesture was intended to put smiles on the faces of the widows.
He said that one of the group’s core mandates was the protection and defence of human rights of citizens.
He said that CDHR had been in the struggle of enforcing the rights of the people whenever their rights were being violated in any part of the country.
Anosike said that the group decided to celebrate with the widows and share with them the items sent to the state chapter by the national headquarters of the group.
He said: “We deemed it necessary to share with the widows around us part of the consignment of bags of rice we received from our national leadership which were donated to the group by one of its sponsors.
“So, we thought it wise that since we are fighting for the people’s rights, what about the less privileged, those who cannot afford a bag of rice considering what a bag of rice costs in the market?
“We said what about the widows that have the duty of training their children, who have no money to buy a bag of rice to celebrate with their families?
“So, we said let us invite them and give them bags of rice for their Christmas, so that in turn it will touch their lives and those of their children.
“The national leadership gave the directive to all the branches to go and implement.
“So, we looked out and searched first from among our members and those widows we have helped in the cause of doing our work within and outside the capital city.
“So, beneficiaries are drawn from across the state and our hope is to put smiles on their faces by showing them love in this Christmas season.
“You know, you cannot fully enjoy the right to live when you don’t have food on your table.
So, with these bags of rice, we are asking the widows to go and enjoy their fundamental right to live.”
Anosike called on the National and State Houses of Assembly to enact legislations that would criminalise harmful widowhood practices still prevalent in many Nigerian communities.
He expressed commitment of the group to championing the campaign against citizens’ right violation, especially by those in authority.
Some of the beneficiaries, including Ifeoma Igbedike, Josephine Ogbonnaya and Roseline Nwiboko, who spoke on behalf of others, expressed delight over the gift and thanked the group for remembering them at Christmas.