Many people in Okigwe, Imo North Senatorial District of Imo State could hardly hide their elation recently when they received some food items and financial aid from the former Secretary to the State Government, Mr Mark Uchendu.
On hand to receive the items and cash on behalf of the people at the residence of the donor in Ihitte Uboma Local Government Area (LGA) were representatives from the six local government areas that constitute the Senatorial zone. Also present were the youth leaders. The local governments are Okigwe, Onuimo, Ehime Mbano, Isiala, Mbano, Obowo and Ihitte Uboma. Among items distributed were bags of rice, noodles, groundnut oil and onions. Funds were also made available to some beneficiaries.
During the presentation. the safety rules as directed by Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) was observed as the food items were handed over to the people.
Uchendu, who is seeking his party’s ticket in the forthcoming Imo North Senatorial rerun, explained that he didn’t want all the beneficiaries and vulnerable people to be present physically. He said he invited only community leaders in adherence to rules by the NCDC towards prevention of the spread of COVID-19.
The former lawmaker said his resolve to alleviate the sufferings of the poor, the vulnerable and youths in this trying period was not political, but out of concern for the wellbeing of the less privileged in Okigwe.
He admonished the beneficiaries to obey NCDC directives which he said were geared towards preservation of their lives and also to prevent the spread of the deadly virus.
He reminded them not to forget to wear facemasks, frequent washing of their hands with clean water and soap and follow other safety protocols.
While assuring them that both the state and federal governments have empowered scientists through provision of funds to find vaccine for the cure of the virus, Uchendu urged government to also look into ways of encouraging discovery of local vaccines.
He advised the recipient to ensure that the food items and cash got to the vulnerable persons in their communities.
Responding on behalf of other leaders, Christian Nwokoro from Ehime Mbano Local Government Area thanked Uchendu for considering the plight of vulnerable persons in the area. He expressed confidence that the food items and cash would go a long way to cushion the effect of the pandemic.
He said the people would forever remain grateful to Uchendu for the palliatives which he believed would alleviate the hardship and suffering faced by vulnerable persons in Okigwe.
Nwokoro noted that since the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic, the state and federal governments have take steps to prevent the spread of the virus, explaining that the measures, such as the lockdown and curfew imposition, had slowed down commercial activities in Okigwe. This, he noted, had brought untold hardship to the people, especially the vulnerable ones.
The food items and cash were later distributed to the community and youth leaders for onward transmission to the beneficiaries.