GOVERNOR IKPEAZU RECEIVES RETURNEES FROM SOUTH AFRICA, VOWS TO REINTEGRATE THEM
Abia State Governor, Dr. Okezie Victor Ikpeazu has said that his administration is committed to ensuring the reintegration and better lives for South African returnees of Abia indigenes.
The Governor who stated this at Government House, Umuahia while receiving the Abia returnees from South Africa in the wake of the recent xenophobic attack in that country, urged them to take advantage of the numerous empowerment programmes in the State to improve their lives.
He noted the existence of various skills acquisition centres in the three Senatorial districts of the State as a place they could be trained including the various agricultural value chain programmes, shoe making among others that they could engage in so as to make a living for themselves.
He expressed displeasure over the unfortunate incident where a country like South Africa, which Nigeria and other sister African countries assisted greatly in gaining her freedom could make herself a grave yard for the same Africans and described the action as a misplaced aggression.
The State Chief Executive commended the proprietor of Airpeace, Mr. Allen Onyema for volunteering his air craft to evacuate Nigerians back to the country and lauded the quick steps taken by the Abia State Diaspora office in reaching out to the Abia returnees in time and profiling them accordingly.
Presenting the returnees to the Governor, the Special Adviser to the Governor on Diaspora Matters, Dr. (Mrs.) Ngozi Ogbonna-Erondu sought further assistance of the Governor to the returnees, especially in their reintegration. She said that the returnees have been profiled, informing that, while some of them are skillful in various areas, others are traders.
Dr. Erondu-Ogbonna, who thanked the Governor for his gesture so far also expressed the hope that he would do more for them.
Earlier in his speech, one of the returnees, Mr. Uche Nwocha narrated their ordeal in South Africa, disclosing that the killings have been there for years before it degenrated to the latest out burst. He said they lost all but thanked God for the intervention of Mr. President, the State Governor and Mr. Allen Onyema, the owner of Airpeace.
He appreciated the Governor for his quick intervention and said that they are delighted over his kind gesture to them and prayed God to bless him.