Gov. Eno Commends First Lady, Sen. Tinubu over Humanitarian Strides of RHI

Gov. Eno Commends First Lady, Sen. Tinubu over Humanitarian Strides of RHI

Akwa Ibom State Governor, Pastor Umo Eno, has lauded the First Lady of Nigeria and National Chairman of the Renewed Hope Initiative, Senator Oluremi Tinubu over the strides and impact recorded by the organisation.

Governor Eno gave the commendation at the launch of the Renewed Hope Initiative Women Agriculture Support Programme for the South South geo – political zone of Nigeria, which took place at the Government House Banquet Hall, Uyo.

He noted with delight, the inclusion of a support programme for those with special needs adding, “I understand that during the course of this event, about a hundred persons living with special needs will receive financial empowerment through Renewed Hope Initiative Business Recapitalization Grant.

“Let me specifically commend Her Excellency, the First Lady for the Humanitarian disposition of the Renewed Hope Initiative.

“Through this programme, vulnerable groups all over the nation have been given financial empowerment. I recall how impressed we were when she came here to empower 250 elders with N100, 000 each, and we told her we will support and adopt that initiative by launching the Arise Initiative for the Elders which is now in operation.

“Every month, elders especially, the vulnerable ones, from the 369 wards in all the Local Government Areas in the State are given fifty thousand naira each to take care of their needs especially food and medicine.

“Today, we are gathered here again to launch this great initiative for the South- South region. As our nation grapples with this challenging economic environment that has led to high prices of food items, this programme will help support our farming populations to ensure that we get back to the farm,” he said.

The Governor maintained that though the State has temporarily done something about the high foodstuff problem through the food voucher programme from the Bulk Purchase Agency, the solution is for everyone to return to the farm, adding that the State had declared every first and third Friday as work – free farm days to encourage people to return to the farm.

He noted that the appeal for everyone to return to the farm is to ensure food security, stressing that a nation that can not feed itself is in grave danger.

Governor Eno, who is renowned for his compassionate and humanitarian disposition, said, “we have also taken serious interest in people living with disabilities. One of the very first appointments I made was that of an assistant to the Governor on students living with disabilities, as well as another with other people with special needs.

“We have gone ahead to institute a N100 million grant for students living with disabilities. So far, we have paid N250,000 and N350,000 respectively to undergraduates and Postgraduates. Students living with special needs.

“We will continue to work with them. Last week, right in this hall, we had the privilege of presenting a cheque of N1.5 million naira to a man with special need who attended our entrepreneurial Accelerator Programme.He makes shoes and he gifted me a pair of shoes. But that training was for nine weeks, and I was really emotional when I saw that the man, for nine weeks, attended that training, I was thrilled.

“I have since directed the Honourable Commissioner for Health to make sure he gets him a proper means of movement, and have also directed my Special Assistant on Humanitarian Services to make sure he locates and furnish his factory with necessary industrial machines.

“These are part of the programmes we believe can get to the grassroots and touch our people, people that we so often forget and only remember them during elections. This time, we have made it a priority that we bring them forth,” he added.

Inaugurating the RHI Women Agricultural Support Programme, Senator Oluremi Tinubu who was represented by wife of the Vice President, Hajia Nana Shettima, disclosed that the programme which has also been held in other geopolitical zones in the country aims at empowering 20 women each from the six states in the south-south region with the sum of N500,000 per beneficiary.

She explained that 75 per cent of the beneficiaries of the scheme are young females who are mainly into agriculture.

She said, “Today, we are supporting twenty (20) women farmers per state in the South-South Zone with the sum of N500,00 each. To this end, a draft of Ten Million Naira (N10,000,000) per state will be handed over to the First Ladies of Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Delta, Edo, and Rivers States who are also RHI State Coordinators for onward disbursement to all beneficiaries in their respective states.”

She noted that the farmers are those in the agrarian sector, animal husbandry, poultry, and fish farming, adding that RHI will be collaborating with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture to empower other potential farmers.

The First Lady further announced that 100 persons living with disabilities
who are into small-scale businesses would each receive the sum of N100,000 to boost their businesses.

Earlier, the Akwa Ibom State First Lady, Pastor (Mrs) Patience Umo Eno noted that women in agriculture often face numerous challenges including access to finance and availability of land, and appreciated the wife of the President, for providing the women with opportunity to contribute meaningfully to the socio-economic development of the nation.

While acknowledging that the financial support to women in farming will go a long way to support the women, she urged them to make judicious use of financial support for their own good, the state and the country at large.

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