By Raymond Benson (KMCO) Abia LIFE-ND project.
The Abia State Livelihood Improvement Family Programme, Niger Delta, (LIFE-ND), paid a new year visit to the State Governor, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu,Ph.D at his country home residence, Umuobiakwa, Obingwa LGA, yesterday.
The State Project Coordinator, Uchenna Rowland Onyeizu, Ph.D. who described the visit as “necessary”, employed the opportunity, not only to thank the Chief Executive for his prompt interventions, but to also brief him on the extent of LIFE-ND activities in the state.
Dr. Uchenna who was obviously elated for the opportunity, said that the project had engaged and empowered 280 incubatees at different stages, with Working Capital, including inputs not less than N1m to N1.2m, depending on any of the four selected commodities of their choice, insisting that the empowerment would take them out of poverty.
” For those that are into poultry business, we’ve also provided inputs, and each of them will be provided not less than N1m to N1.2m inputs.
” We project that by the end of this year, for each community we do our poultry production, we’ll build a poultry cluster. As we speak, we’ve started building two poultry clusters at Umuode Ihie and Abayi Ohanze communities which will be commissioned before the end of this month.” he promised.
On the challenge of land, Dr. Onyeizu said the Governor was “very gracious” to provide 200 hectares of land at Ohanbele, Ukwa East and 15 hectares at Nsulu Games Village, all for cassava production, noting that their engaged youths had cultivated 30 and 15 hectares respectively.
Continuing, he said,
“We’re presently in 52 communities and our target is 100(in the state).For the 52 communities, we intend to create earth roads of not less than 2km. We’re done with 2.5 km road at Isiala Ukwu Mbato.” he concluded.
He also thanked the Governor for providing the enabling environment which had in no small measure, assisted the project.
Responding, Dr. Ikpeazu spoke on difficulties of receiving, accepting and achieving the set mandate of a project of this kind, but “I’ve seen that the type of staff you have are capable of delivering on the mandate”.
Speaking further he said,
“I’m thrilled by what you’ve achieved so far. 52 (communities), which is more than 50% of your target goal in about 12 months ago. It tells me that exactly, you’ll meet your target goal even before the end of the year.
“I want you to continue to work on it and bring up your innovations to bear, to make sure, not only to satisfy the mandate as prescribed by funders and owners of the programme, but to add to your vein, something that’s likely, people will view, and that will be outstanding for this nation.
“I’ve seen some of the earth roads you’re doing and I’m satisfied with the quality and would want you to continue in that direction.
What sustains the memory of an interventionist programme like yours is the power and strength of the project in terms of durability.”
Governor Ikpeazu emphasized on the importance of the roads, adding that they would improve agricultural activities leading to economic growth of the communities and the nation.
He also advised staff to have satisfaction in the job as they take their work seriously, noting that a successful project would enhance their Curriculum Vitae for future engagements.
Dr. Onyeizu also used the opportunity to present copies of Abia LIFE-ND activities’ Picture Albums and Newsletters to the Governor.
Earlier in the day, Dr. Onyeizu had taken Deputy Director of Federal Ministry of Finance and Budgeting, Mr. Ohari Stephen, Project Coordinator of NEWMAP, Izuchukwu Onwughara including Nigeria for Women Project, Madugba Victoria, and their teams to have a sight view of the completed cassava production and earth road project at Nsulu and Isiala Ukwu Mbato respectively.
Among the State Coordinator’s entourage were, the State agribusiness Officer, Pastor Chukwuekezie Godwin, State Procurement Officer, Kelechi Onyemachi, State Project Accountant, Mr. Daniel Alozie, State Admin and Logistics Officer, Wisdom Ukonu. Others include, State Internal Auditor, Mrs. Favour Azubuike, State Rural Institution, Youth and Gender Officer, Deacon Anthony Nwaobilor and State Knowledge Management and Communication Officer, Raymond Benson.