Before the present administration in Abia State, the ability of Abia youths was neglected and the inability to harness such abilities caused a decline in the economic fruitfulness of the state. In addition, the dilapidated nature of the roads in the state, especially in Aba, the commercial hub of the state, made matters worse. But, the present administration led by Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu is using all mechanism to harness the abilities of both the youths and women in the state.
The indubitable fact of Abia state, particularly Aba, being the center for innovation and creativity in South-East, South-South and Nigeria in general, made Gov. Ikpeazu to mobilize resources at his disposal towards harnessing and harvesting from our areas of competitive advantage since 2015. This is a good shot that has become a catalyst for effective, efficient, impactful and sustainable development in the state.
Lest we forget, on Thursday, 3rd of August 2017, forbes acclaimed richest man in Africa, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, two former governors of Anambra state, Mr. Peter Obi and Dr. Chris Ngige alongside renowned industrialist and champion of made in Nigeria vehicles, Dr. Innocent Chukwuma (Innoson), stormed Umuahia for the graduation ceremony of the first products of Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu’s Education for Employment (E4E) scheme.
The event saw the graduation of over 2000 Abia youths who were trained in ICT, Beauty Therapy (hair dressing, make-up, weaving etc), Fashion Designing (tailoring and clothe making), Leather works (shoe and bags making), welding and fabrication, hospitality, waste management, health and social care, carpentry works and security.
Apart from sending 30 Abia youths to China to learn the new method of shoe making and finishing, Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu also assembled 50 young entrepreneurs to speak about their business ideas which enabled them access fund ranging from N250, 000 to N750, 000 from the State government with which to establish their business.
The governor’s poverty alleviation and human capital development programmes are unlimited. The traders, youths and women; even the less privileged members in the society, were all factored in his various empowerment schemes. He created an unprecedented community development initiative which captured the traditional rulers along with their town union presidents in the day to day governance of the state.
Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu of Abia State has given Abia youths the opportunity to serve and contribute to the development of the state. This can be seen both in the appointment of his commissioners and Aides. For Gov. Ikpeazu, Abia youths can do better when given the opportunity to serve.
Kingsley Maduforo, writes from Umuahia.