Layi Olanrewaju, Ilorin
Senate President Bukola Saraki has assured corps members serving in Kwara State of payment of monthly allowances from the state government.
Though he was non-committal on the time line for the payment of the stipend, Saraki promised to employ what he called “persuasive powers”, to encourage the state government to begin payment.
He spoke during a condolence visit to the state Orientation Camp of National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Yikpata, Edu Local Government Area over the death of 2018 Batch ‘A’ female corps member, Amadi Eva Ichechukwu.
Amadi, with the state code KW/18A/0135, died last Thursday while still undergoing orientation course on camp. She was said to be a graduate of Oil and Gas Engineering from University of Port Harcourt.
The Senate President said he would ensure that the state government commence the payment of the stipends to corps members in earnest.
“On the issue of allowances, you know that my powers remain in the chambers. I do not have the executive powers in the state. But I can assure you that I have persuasive powers to persuade the Governor of the state despite their own condition to start the issue of allowances.
“And I can promise you that one way or the other, that allowances, we must start paying them”, he said.
Saraki, who was conducted round the camp, harped on the need to upgrade facilities within the camp to make it comfortable for the corps members.
“We need to upgrade the facilities here and I take it as one of those things that we would do to see that the facilities are upgraded. This is not meant to be a place of endurance, it is meant to be a place that you would have a memorable time of being here.
“So, it is our responsibility to make it conducive and comfortable. It is not the intention that you must be in a place that is not good enough for your accommodation”, the Senate President said.
Describing the youths of the nation as full of potentials, Saraki said efforts are being intensified to lay a foundation that would strengthen their potentials and capacities.
“You are at a very critical point in your life and about to start the journey out there. I know times are hard, the future is not as promising as we hope. But we have a great country that has a lot of potentials and we are all working hard to ensure that we lay a kind of foundation that would enable us you people who have potentials and capacity to match anybody in any part of the world. Please, stay focused and committed and I promise you that we would do our best to ensure your future is bright”, he said.
However, Saraki, who expressed sadness over the death of Amadi, said relevant authorities must take responsibility to avert the recurrence of the tragedy.
The State Coordinator of NYSC, Mr Amaefule Regimius, who enumerated the challenges confronting the corps in the state, called for concerted effort to provide some of the infrastructure needed on the orientation camp.