Governor Okezie Ikpeazu on Friday received commendation from Engr. Abiodun Sanni, the National Project Coordinator (NPC) of the Livelihood Improvement Family Enterprises-Niger Delta (LIFE-ND) for the prompt payment of counterpart fund and high level of progress in the agro empowerment project in Abia state.
The commendation visit was geared by the outstanding performance of Abia LIFE-ND at the national level and a summary of the monitoring and evaluation exercise carried out by Engr. Abiodun and his team in Abia state LIFE-ND coordinating office and other field activities of the project in the state.
Professor Ikechi Mgbeoji, the Abia state commissioner for agriculture and Uchenna Rowland Onyeizu, PhD, the State Project Coordinator (SPC) of Abia LIFE-ND led the monitoring and evaluation team of Engr. Abiodun to see the governor at the government lodge, Aba.
Engr. Sunny applauded the support and effort of governor Ikpeazu in ensuring prompt payment of the counterpart fund and the speedy pace of LIFE-ND project in the state. He also thanked governor Ikpeazu for choosing Dr. Onyeizu to head the LIFE-ND coordinating team in Abia state which he described as a wise decision.
In his words; “I must sincerely thank you your excellency for your effort, amongst all the governors of Niger-Delta, we see you as an ambassador of the project, in the first documentary of the project we had from your state, you were really prominent and gave a positive perception of what the project has done in the state.
“I also want to tell you that you did not make mistake in choosing Dr Onyeizu as the project coordinator in Abia state, he is the pioneer of the project, he is the first among his equals in the project. Amongst the states, Abia state is in the forefront.”
Engr. Abiodun also pleaded with governor Okezie Ikpeazu for more support stating that the project’s budget is sixty million Dollars ($60m) for the Niger-Delta states for a period of six years which is expected to go round the entire Niger-Delta states, thus, it requires support from the private sector.
Engr. Abiodun also thanked the governor for the drastic steps he has taken to support the project to ensure maximum food security in the state and also to provide jobs for the youths and the less privileged in the state.
In response, governor Okezie Ikpeazu thanked and encourage Engr. Abiodun for his resilience to go round the states for proper supervision and monitoring of the project. Governor Ikpeazu also added that agriculture is the only way to go now for sustainability of the economy and food security. He also noted that most project of this nature do end up not actualizing it’s vision but Engr. Abiodun and his team is doing well to effect it, also noting the constraints of monitoring of such a huge project.
Governor Ikpeazu also hinted that it is in the philosophy of his team in government to collaborate and embrace federal government projects for the betterment of Abians also noting that agriculture is part of his economic agenda for Abia state.
Governor Okezie Ikpeazu promised to do his best to make the counterpart fund readily available to sustain the project in the state.
Uchenna Rowland Onyeizu PhD, the State Project Coordinator (SPC) of Abia LIFE-ND project affirmed that Abia state was the first to pay the counterpart fund among the participating states, noting it to be the key reason why Abia LIFE-ND is ahead of other states in the project.
In appraising the commitment of his team, Dr Onyeizu said he is proud to say that in implementation, management and in almost all indices, Abia LIFE-ND have always had the best of it.
“Immediately we got the counterpart fund, we hit the ground from day one. We have had a very good enabling environment within the communities and the governor, his excellency Okezie Ikpeazu, PhD has supported us in all ramification.” Dr Onyeizu said.
The Livelihood Improvement Family Enterprises Project for the Niger Delta (LIFE-ND) is a project of the Federal Government of Nigeria (FGN) designed in collaboration with International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) and Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC). The project is in response to the limited readily available options for the “disadvantaged” (youth and women) in the rural and suburban communities to improve their means of livelihood and help them to live decent lives.