Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
Ondo State Governor, Mr Rotimi Akeredolu has presented cash gift of N100,000 to each of the South African returnees in the state.
This, the Governor said was part of efforts by the state government to re-settle the returnees who are indigenes of the state in their various communities.
Akeredolu who presented the cash gift while receiving the South African returnees at the weekend, promised to give necessary support and provide an enabling environment for them to start a new life.
The Governor who was represented by his Deputy, Mr Agboola Ajayi condemned the xenophobic attack on Nigerians and other foreign nationals living in South Africa.
He described the unwarranted attack as barbaric, saying such action should be discouraged in the future.
The Governor said president Muhammadu Buhari has also visited South Africa to condemn the ugly incident and look at lasting solution to the incident.
He particularly charged the returnees not to be discouraged by what happened to them but be ready to start a new life as they returned safely to Nigeria, their father land.
He assured them of his administration’s readiness to assist them in settling down in their various communities and ameliorate their present conditions.
Akeredolu who informed that his administration has provided various windows of opportunities including youths and women empowerment, agricultural and entrepreneurship programmes among several others, advised them to avail themselves with any of them to better their lives.
Also, he charged the returnees not to be hostile with any foreigners around them so that African countries could be a better place for all.
The governor equally appreciated the spirited efforts of the management of Air Peace airline for their kind gesture by conveying the returnees to the country free of charge.
Earlier, the Senior Special Assistant to the governor on Diaspora Affairs, Fola Olasehinde commended the Governor for his kind gesture and support given to the returnees to ensure they settle down.
She equally admonished them to strive to integrate properly back to the society and eschew all forms of crimes and criminalities.
Speaking at the event some of the returnees including Jenty Edisemi and Sholanke Omolara who appreciated the state government for the support, explained that their experience in South Africa was horrible.