… Sets up LMA Endowment Fund for Downtrodden
By Ifeoma Ezenyilimba
History was on November 2, 2018 made at the local government secretariat, Amawbia when Awka South Local Government Council, Anambra State, in a well-attended First Nigerian Local Government Merit Award (LMA) Ceremony, honoured six distinguished individuals in recognition of their committed contributions to human and community developments.
The Local Government Merit Awardees were the wife of the Executive Governor of Anambra State, Chief Mrs. Ebelechukwu Obiano (LMA); the National Chairman, All Progressive Grand Alliance (APGA) Party, Ozonkpu Dr Victor Oye (LMA); the National Secretary, Peoples' Democratic Party (PDP), High Chief Sen. Ben Ndi Obi, Ojeligbo (LMA); the Hon. Commissioner for Local Government, Chieftaincy & Community Affairs, Anambra State, Hon. Greg Obi (LMA); the CEO of Blessed IKD Group of Companies, High Chief Sir Walter IK Nwozor Ochiliozuo I of Umuawulu (LMA) and the CEO of GGI Int'l Nig. Ltd, Chief (Dr.) Innocent Akuvue (LMA).
In his address of welcome, the Transition Committee Chairman, Awka South L.G.A, Hon. Leo Nwuba, noted that the Local Government Merit Award (LMA), which would be a triennial event, was in celebration of achievers who stood out in their characteristic goodwill, saying that the awardees drive joy in improving the lives of others for the better, as well as adding values to the society.
Nwuba noted that the theme of the maiden LMA, “Sustaining Caring Family Enhancement Initiative (CAFÉ) in Awka South, The Way Forward” speaks volume of the numerous benefits which Awka South LG people have enjoyed from the benevolence and magnanimity of Her Excellency, Chief Mrs. Ebelechukwu Obiano, through her pet CAFÉ project.
Mrs. Obiano was honoured for her benevolence and the succor she provided for many downtrodden individuals through her Caring Family Enhancement Initiative (CAFE), which is her pet project.
Hon. Nwuba said the idea for the LMA was born out of a desire to institutionalize care for the poor and the downtrodden in the local government area. He noted that the money realized from the event and other subsequent ones, would be used to set up and sustain an Endowment Fund Project, so as to assist the downtrodden, destitute and indigent students of Awka South LG Council.
The chairman, who announced the constitution of a governing board headed by Dr Ikem Odumodu, for the triennial LMA and management of the endowment fund, congratulated the first set of awardees for distinguishing themselves for such historic and commendable honour.
Speaking on the occasion, Her Excellency, Mrs. Ebelechukwu Obiano, who was represented by the Commissioner for Justice and Attorney General of Anambra, Dr. Barr. (Mrs.) Uju Nworgu thanked God for the gift of CAFÉ and the various supporters of the project.
Mrs. Obiano pointed out that the CAFÉ was her way of supporting the working Gov Willie Obiano's administration. According to her, some of the achievements of CAFÉ include identified transformation of BASDEN Special Education School, Isulo from a dilapidated school for the physically challenged- the hearing and visually impaired, to a modern habitable academic environment and building of over 16 houses for indigent widows.
They also were organizing of skill trainings & empowerment of over 3,950 women, widows and youths; construction of modern toilets in markets; borehole projects; donation of free prosthetic limbs and wheel chairs to the physically challenged and free treatment of mentally challenged persons at the Home for Mentally Challenged, Nteje.
In his remarks, the chairman of the occasion, Senator Sir Victor Umeh, OFR, KSS, commended Awka South LG led by the TC, Hon. Leo Nwuba for the worthwhile initiative to honour the pillars and great supporters of the local government, saying that local government was paramount for successful grassroot governance.
Umeh, who is the distinguished senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District, tasked all on lives of charity, saying that such goodwill pays. He congratulated the awardees for their distinguished recognition, which he said was an eloquent testimony of their contributions to the development of their communities, the local government and the society at large.
Senator Umeh observed that one of the awardees, Hon. Greg Obi, who is the Anambra State Commissioner for Local Government, Chieftaincy & Community Affairs, had through the 'State N20M Choose Your Community Project', improved grassroots development.
Highlight of the event were presentation of plaques to the awardees, and commissioning of a new Awka South LG Secretariat administrative block built by Hon Leo Nwuba-led administration.