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Mrs Obiano Puts Smiles on the Faces of the Poor ,as she Tours 21LGAs in the State .

By Kingsley Ezekwelu

The Wife of the Anambra state Governor Willie Obiano, and founder -Caring Family Enhancement Initiative (CAFÉ), Chief, Mrs. Ebelechukwu Obiano (Osodieme) has restated her commitment and that of CAFE to the wellbeing of women, especially indigent women, widows and youths in the State. 

Osodieme who made the pledge early in the week during the kick-off ceremony of the 2018 Communities Tour and interaction with women and the less privileged citizens from the communities of Orumba North and South Local Government Areas of the state.

The tours and meetings that have seen her to respective Council headquarters of the state including Onitsha North, Onitsha South, Awka South, Osodieme said that the annual tours she usually undertakes in collaboration with the State Ministry of Social Welfare, Children and Women Affairs is an important outreach programme targeted at women in the various communities across Anambra State. 

She explained that in the course of the tour, “we will be supporting government initiatives aimed at improving the fortunes of our indigent sisters and brothers with various gift items. 

"But I want you to understand that it is not just about handouts but a means of telling them that they are not forgotten, that we care while also bringing information that can help them be better citizens and help themselves.”

She stressed the need for the indigent and persons with physical challenges not to resign to fate, but rather key into the CAFÉ Skills Training and Empowerment programmes which has successfully transformed the lives of over four thousand (4,000) citizens for good by equipping them to become owners of various small scale ventures like tailoring and fashion design, computer and telephone repairs, bakery and confectioneries, interior decoration etc.  

She announced that the last batch of 350 persons trained in various skills would soon be empowered to take off across the state. These people, she happily noted some of who were before now were dependent on others, would in a matter of time become employers of labour and take some persons off the street.

Harping on the importance of child-welfare and immunization, Osodieme appealed to all pregnant and nursing mothers, especially those residing in the rural areas, to make adequate use of the free medical provisions of the various Primary Health Centres(PHC)in their communities as provided by the state government for regular free immunization against childhood diseases. 

She pleaded with the mothers to report without delay to the President Generals or their respective Council Chairmen, any case of lack of vaccines and other medical demands or attempt to extort them by any personnel at the PHCs in any community.

A member of the state House of Assembly representing Orumba South State constituency, Princess Nikky Ugochukwu at the event said that Anambra State was blessed with a caring First Lady who lives a life of charity and service which she translates in her relationship with others. The lawmaker therefore called on the people to support Osodieme's efforts so as to enable her achieve more.

Also, the Commissioner for Social Welfare, Women and Children Affairs, Lady Ndidi Mezue, noted that among the charitable programmes undertaken by Osodieme including the building homes for widows, the care for the mentally challenged and their caregivers at Nteje stands out clear as an act of selfless service to humanity which should be commended by everyone.  

According to the Commissioner, Mrs Obiano's concern was evident in her insistence “that salaries of the care-givers should not come later than the 24th of every month when the government pay the workers in Anambra State.” 

The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Joe Akabuike, said the emergence of Anambra State as the best state on immunization was a collective commitment but largely due to the special interest Her Excellency has on the programme which she advocates everywhere women are gathered. 

Also, the Commissioner for Environment, Architect Mike Okonkwo commended Osodieme for the special attention she gives to the welfare of ndi Anambra in support of the government through the initiatives of CAFÉ and willingness to collaborate with relevant government agencies whenever the need arises  

Chairman of Orumba South Local Government Area, Barrister Ray Onyegu, and his counterpart from Orumba North, Architect Emeka Aforka, thanked the governor's wife for her zeal, highlighting the humanitarian projects of CAFÉ that have benefitted most communities as a major feature of support to the present government. He therefore urged her not to relent.  

Onitsha North, South:
It was tumultuous when the tour train berthed at the Onitsha North and South Local Government headquarters when she and her entourage stormed the areas.

The citizens of the area, especially the womenfolk had looked up the day with great expectation and enthusiasm, when Osodieme arrived on the continuation of her annual empowerment tour of communities. She arrived to a rousing reception and cultural displays by dance troupes.  

In her address, at the Onitsha South Council headquarters, Osodieme said the Obiano administration will never compromise on the interest and wellbeing of ndi Anambra.

In her words: “I can attest that the Willie Obiano-led government is bent on building a lifetime legacy in service of our people. That is why he is working to fulfill on promises made to ndi Anambra. He cannot abandon you because you are part of history that made him the 21-over-21 Governor when he won in all the twenty-one local governments of Anambra state.”

And at the Onitsha North headquarters, she restated her earlier promise to build old people's homes across the three senatorial districts of Anambra State announcing that the foundation stones for the homes will be laid soon. She pledged to sustain the work her NGO, Caring Family Enhancement Initiative (CAFÉ) by touching the lives of the needy across the state and where it mattered.

She emphasized the importance of maternal and childcare, and called on pregnant and nursing mothers to make use of medical provisions at the health centres. She also thanked the people of the Council areas for the wonderful reception and urged them to continue supporting the government programmes.

 Mrs Beverly Nkem Ikpeazu, representing Onitsha South Two State  constituency commended Osodieme for sustaining her life-enhancing philanthropy to ndi Anambra. Also her Onitsha South one Constituency counterpart, Hon Patrick Aniuno thanked Mrs Obiano for being the mother to all in Anambra, without segregation.

At Onitsha North Council headquarters, the Commissioner for Indigenous Artwork, Tourism and Culture, Mrs. Sally Mbanefo, listed the virtues of Osodieme as an exemplary woman who has made it possible for other women to play active role through her husband, the governor of Anambra State. She thanked Osodieme for her charitable heart and called on residents of Onitsha North to continue to support the Obiano administration.

Earlier, the Transition Committee Chairman of Onitsha South, Prince Jerry Asoanya, said the advent of the Obiano government has given Onitsha city the best gift of peace and tranquility like never before and recounted the ugly past years when dare-devil robbers ravaged the city and its environs. On his part, the Transition Chairman of Onitsha North Council Area, Chief Patrick Aghamba, said that governor Obiano’s giant strides in community development, youth empowerment, agricultural and education are proofs of governance predicted on the wellbeing of the people.

 At Awka South:
Mrs Obiano in continuation of her communities tour has urged ndi Anambra to remain being their brothers and sisters keepers by helping the less privileged around them.

She made the plea Friday at the commissioning of a 2-Bedroom bungalow built for a widow at Umudioka, Awka, Awka South council of the State.

The building project which was spearheaded by the Transition Committee Chairman of the Council Area, Chief Leo Nwuba, to assist Mrs. Roseline Anene who on March 2018 successfully recovered and was rehabilitated  at the Nteje Home fort he Mentally Challenged which is being managed by CAFE

Mrs. Anene who got missing and at a time was presumed dead by her family but was later found and reunited with them after 35 years.

Presenting the keys to the house to the sixty-seven year mother of two,   Osodieme, commended the Chairman for taking after CAFÉ example and providing a house for Mrs. Anene. She described the story of Mrs. Anene whom everyone thought was Yoruba, because she normally speaks the language with her whenever she visits; as touching and heart-rending. Osodieme recounted the woman’s story of after being picked-up and taken to the Nteje Home where she successfully responded to treatment before eventually revealing that she is from Umudioka in Awka South Council Area. 

Osodieme, implored well-to-do individuals to take a leaf from such benevolence, stressing that history never forgets those that give kind-heartedly. She also called on the people to avoid stigmatization of those who previously had physical or mental challenges so as to help them get properly re-integrated back into the society. She also pledged to furnish the living room of the house with two beds, a set of furniture and two standing fans.

Nwuba commended Osodieme for the successful treatment and rehabilitation of Mrs. Anene, noting that her work of charity inspired him to support the widow in line with what CAFÉ is doing across Anambra State. He pledged to cater for the feeding costs of the beneficiary for one week.

Dr. Nnamdi Okafor, a member of the state Assembly commended Osodieme for giving the less privileged reason to smile through her many charitable deeds.

Mrs Anene in her reaction said that Osodieme has written a story that will be told over generations yet to come and thanked the Chairman for providing her a place to live. Her son, Mr. Chukwudi Anene, equally thanked Osodieme and everyone and noted that the reunion with his mother has changed his life for the better.
More so,  Idemili South 
Mrs Obiano urged women not to be liability to there family rather a supportive hand and loyal companion that helps their husbands to provide for welfare of their families.
Osodieme  ,who described 21/21 victory of governor Obiano as divine orchestrated and peoples mandate, which will be cherished in love and right approach in dealing with dividends of governance to people ,she further promised that welfare of people and  carrying the people along in process of governance is  the first  core charge responsibility for present administration helmed by her husband. 
Earlier in his remarks, the SSA to the governor on youth mobilization Hon,Engr TonyUche  Ezekwelu, eulogied the Wife of the governor as the Mother Theresa of our time,discribing her philanthropic gestures as immeasurable act of love. 

Various items including bags of rice, school bags, mosquito nets, exercise books were handed out to the less-privileged and the physically challenged from the communities in all the councils visited.

Other Local government areas the wife of the governor Chief Mrs Ebelechukwu Obiano has visited included, Nnewi North /South, Aguata, Awka North, Oyi,Dunukofia,Idemili North and Ekwusigo  respectively.

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