Alhaji Garuba Ibrahim Yiakasai PhD.
The Leadership of Concerned Igbo Leaders Forum congratulates His Excellency Mohammed Buhari GCFR, For His Giant Strides in South East States of Nigeria, speaking to news men at the 3rd National Summit On Diminishing Corruption in the public sector on 30th November 2021 at the State House Conference Center, State House Abuja, for accountability in management of government resources and implementation of plans on security, economy and fight against corruption, in recognition that good governance is the solution to fulfilling our potentials, while focusing on attention to problems of dwindling revenue, following the massive reduction in the global price of crude oil and it’s attendant negative impact on national and state revenue projection in country, under the present administration.
During the auspicious summit, the negative impact of unnecessary cost of governance offered opportunity for critical stakeholders to proffer solutions and suggestions on ways to reduce cost of governance and promote transparency and accountability in government expenditures.
The Special Adviser to the Governor of Abia State on Agricultural Empowerment, Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam seized the moment with newsmen at the States House Conference Center Abuja to commend the President for the reconstruction of Enugu-Portharcourt express road, ongoing Second Niger bridge that will be a significant new transport link for the Southeast and South South states of Nigeria which is funded by Presidential Infrastructure Development funds, managed by Nigeria Sovereign Investment Authority, which will be commissioned before end of 2023, the Geometric Power Plant in Abia State and for appointing an Abia son Hon Prince Paul Ikonne GM NALDA.
Ibiam told President Mohammad Buhari to recall his directive through a letter copied to him and to the former Minister for Agriculture Chief Awudu Ogbeh, when he was represented by the Hon Minister for the flag off Abia Youths Empowerment In Agriculture Programs and Foundation laying stone ceremony of President Mohammed Buhari Modern Youths Mechanized Farm Settlement, Greenhouse and industrial cluster at Otuzo Ibere in Ikwuano LGA on the 17th of March 2016, where the Governor was represented by his Deputy Sir Ude Okochukwu PhD in the presence of Federal and State Ministry of Agriculture Stakeholders, Ndi Eze, Commissioners, different Women and Youths organizations of Abia State.
The Youths Leader in tears during interactions with State House media team after the summit at the State House Conference Center Abuja, soaked in tears, Ibiam voiced out and called on the President Mohammed Buhari GCFR to understand that, after every struggle, intimidation from former commissioner for Agriculture Chief Uzo Azubike and his cohort, and other statutory deprivation to his person and office as a Governors Aid by the government of Abia State, for over 6 years, that he managed to train Abia Youths in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Agriculture Umuahia, under Dr Ebere Oziri, for 90 days at the National Roots Crops Research Institute Umudike, and that the Federal Ministry have written letters for empowerment of the trained youths that will qualify for the funding and establishment of the Youths Farm Settlement, but till date Abia Youths have been abandoned, as most of them have gone back to rubbery, thuggery, kidnapping, agitation and antisocial vices.
On Daily basis, known and unknown youths who believed with Mr Obinna Norman and Hon Commissioner for Information Eze Chikamnayo when they were attacking the Governor online media, alleged on Facebook that the Governor have used Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam Youths Empowerment Programs to syphon and squandered over 1 billion naira GEEP program, these Youths who were made to believe the false alarm, calls through phone and text messages to threaten the life of the Youths Empowerment Programs Project Director Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam asking furiously and aggressively for their empowerment starter pack from the government after 90 days training, as promised to establish their different areas of Agricultural value chain to create jobs and boost MSME, food security and foreign exchange, different Youths calls in their numbers from 17 LGA asking the where about of the announced and celebrated 50 million naira Counterpart funds that the Federal Ministry of Agriculture Umuahia was grateful to the Governor for his approval to make the dreams of these unemployed idle heroes, our teaming youths to contribute their own quota, in the drive of the state government economic and financial ecosystem as a driving tool for Return On investment.
The Youths were thoroughly trained on modern technics, on different value chain and value addition of over 31, Agricultural food value chain.
After the training of over 3000 Youths, they were grouped into 300 cooperative extension and cooperative societies and these interested youths, opened their personal, cooperative extension and cooperative societies account at Uzuakoli Microfinance Bank, and Michael Okpara University of Agriculture Microfinance Bank Umudike, inline with the bye law and CBN directive on the letter sent the office of the Special Adviser to the Governor Abia State Government, hence the need for all the members of the cooperative extension and cooperative societies to open an account with the Microfinance Banks based on the information from the CBN on cooperative extension and societies and Microfinance Bank guidelines to serve as starter pack loan disbursement channels before the CBN change of Policies that prompted the move to disburse the funds from a higher Money Deposit Bank with the required capacity, which is higher than Microfinance Bank capacity to Bank of Agriculture Umuahia where the State Ministry of Agriculture have applied accordingly through former Permanent Secretary Ambassador Effort Ogbonna and The Very Rev Ernest Onyeukwu retired, waiting for the release of the approved counterpart funds to Bank of Agriculture to access the Youths Empowerment Starter pack funds.
The Youths opened account judiciously, their account opening balances are in their individual separate bank account in the Microfinance Banks, not in the cooperative nor Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam personal bank accounts, subject to investigation, the interested youths to show accountability, and proper grouping of the trainees, for enhancement of Agribusiness drive in developing economies, setting up of cooperative extension and cooperative societies in groups according to the rules and regulations of the byelaw, demands registration for everyone trained member of the 300 cooperatives society of 10-30 members each.
The registered youths received identity cards, in door hall and practical training as experimented at National Roots Crops Research Institute Umudike library Conference Center, within the 90 days from different LGA, their registration fee was used to run logistics for the success of the Youths training and Empowerment Programs.
It was gathered that, out of #1000 cooperative societies registration fee from the participants, #500 was for Identification card production, and #200 was for running of diesel and generators, #100 to the then security men, for securing the vicinity, watching the cars and personal belongings and properties of the trainees while studying in the Conference Hall, #200 for daily feeding, water, refreshments of trainees and 20 resources personnels from Federal Ministry of Agriculture under, Dr Ebere Oziri and his team and other team of lecturers from Michael Okpara University of Agriculture Umudike and Nation Roots Crops Research Institute Umudike, these youths since 2017 ought to have become contributing factor in the boost and development of Abia economy by this 2021.
The Youths need the release of the counterpart funds and more to give succor to the helpless unemployed Youths who needs encouragements as starter pack to develop their talents, Arts, Innovations, Technology, Agriculture, if we’re really serious and sincere on the drive to develop the economy of Nigeria.
Despite the frustrating bureaucratic huddles in the civil service, rumors of blackmail to give a succeeding dog a bad name to stop the divine youths empowerment program, after investigation into the youths empowerment programs by government house CSO Emeka Ubani and Mr Enyinnaya Apollos, The witch-hunt started from, former Commissioner for Agriculture Uzo Azubike who claimed without any official petition or evidence from any source that, Ibiam was running an unknown program, but he Chief Uzo Azubike was sitting side by side to the present Deputy Governor and Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Presidency representatives, Ibiam also have in his file forthe Youths Empowerment Programs documents which he will make public soon, Chief Uzo Azubike’s introduction letter of the empowerment program through a letter, encouraging the Governor to approve the Youths all important job creation program.
Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam was surprised to see Enyinnaya Apollos pointing at him like Judas Iscariot when he betrayed Jesus of Nazareth, Ibiam was sitting, waiting for the Governor in the Governor’s waiting room, he was handcuffed, humiliated and subjected to unnecessary intimidation and illegal investigation, by the government house CSO, after the investigation, Ibiam asked Hon Erondu jnr Erondu and the Governor about it, Erondu and the Governor told him that they weren’t aware of the investigation, at the end he came back clean with his former Secretary of the Youths Empowerment Programs Cooperative Society Comrade Ugochukwu Nwankwo, other Executive Members of the Youths Empowerment Programs Cooperative Society where, Apostle Emma Eguzikpe from Isialangwa North LGA, Elder Ndukwe Aka, Hon Emelike Kalu Bende LGA, Hon Oguibe Chinyere Ugwunagbo, Hon Chinonso Onwuegbu, Hon Obinna Ukpom, Obingwa LGA, and former LGA Deputy Chairman Prince Paul Okpanku legal Adviser.
Little did the illegal investigators know that, Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam after graduation from Ebonyi State University Law Faculty, took his time during his Service to study the empowerment of Youths and Basic Procedures along Processing Corridors.
Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam was one of the Youths who benefited from President Good luck Jonathan SURE-P Program, of Federal Ministry of Finance under Dr Mrs Okonjo Iweala and Federal Ministry of Agriculture under Dr Akinwumi Adesina, after his graduation from Law Faculty Ebonyi State University, he learned and qualified as a Certified International Facilitator of Businesses, General Services and Empowerment Programs hence his relationship and official correspondence with the Presidency and Federal Ministry of Agriculture.
He became, Director for Abia and Southeast YEAP, GES, SURE-P Program of a Non Government Organization Youths For Agriculture Nigeria, his passion to get the Youths of Abia Southeast Empowered to become self reliance and create Jobs to develop the economy of Nigeria after graduation from the University, endeared him to former Governor Orji Uzoh Kalu, also former Governor Senator T. A Orji, serving as Special Assistant and Senior Special Assistant on Youths Empowerment Programs to the dou Governors.
In 2012, He served the state as Governing Council Member ASCETA with the Present Commissioner for Cooperative Hon Chief Donatus Okorie as Chairman of the Governing Council Members Board of ASCETA Institute, where he and his Fellow Board Members attracted reforms and made progresses from TETFUND for revenue generation and payment of University workers salaries, including former LGA Chairman and former Commissioner Hon Chief P C Mbah, he was instrumental to the Fish Farm Resource Center in the college, that was built to attract students from nearby Universities in Southeast to Arochukwu, for Research on Fish farming to boost knowledge and develop the economy through fish production.
He became Special Adviser to the to Present Governor, Dr Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, who approved the implementation of the Program, based on the Governor’s directives and charge for Ibiam to ensure success of the Program, the Governor also approved 50 million naira Counterpart funds for empowerment of the 1st 1000 members of the Youths Empowerment Programs cooperative and other Youths from the 17 LGA.
He congratulate Dr Okezie Victor Ikpeazu for building 1st of it’s kind, a modern 1st class Automated Shoes Ecosystem, to create jobs for unemployed Youths and pleaded for attention to the members of Abia Youths Empowerment in Agricultural Program, the Youths are the driving force to create wealth among developing economies and Nations.
The family of the land donor for the establishment of the Youths Farm Settlement, where the Governor, Federal and State Ministry of Agriculture did the foundation laying stone ceremony with late Abia State Deputy Chairman of Ndi Eze, Eze Godwin Chionye and these over 3000 youths have almost lost hope on Abia State government for abandoning them for years, till they decided to make sure that the President, Muhammad Buhari GCFR, comes out to rescue the future and empowerment funds of Abia Youths by ensuring an unconditional release of the Governor approved counterpart funds which he did, in the presence of the Arch Bishop of Methodist, His Grace Most Rev Dr Raphael Opoko since 2019.
As every avenue to send letters has been tried to draw attention of the Governor, hence the need for the President to interface with Abia State Governor, encourage the Governor and support the State, with more funds as they expect release of the counterpart funds from the Presidency and the office of Abia Governor, to implement the Youths Empowerment Programs waiting for the release everyday, they have gone through every route possible to reach the Governor as the pressure from the agitating youths lands on the head of Obinna Ndukwe Ibiam for over 7 years, attracting undue and unwarranted, unwanted enemity from angry disgruntled agitating trained unemployed Youths.
The President, ABIA YOUTHS EMPOWERMENT IN AGRICULTURAL PROGRAM COOPERATIVE SOCIETY, appealed to the Governor and apologized for any reason or inconveniences caused, by empowering the Youths to curb effect of COVID-19 in Abia State, the economy of people and security of lives and properties.
He added that the President needs to come to the rescue of the Youths of Abia State and investigate activities of the Federal and State Ministry of Agriculture Umuahia, since 2015 till date, including the Paris Club Refunds, as the implementation, empowerment and establishment of the Youths Empowerment Program with the Farm Settlement will create over 300, 000, 000 jobs within 10 years, to compliment the remaining 40 precent as Return On Investment output, impacting over 3 trillion naira to Abia economy by 2031 if given attention.
He harped on the need to kickstart disbursement of funds to the Youths, monitored by the Resources Personnels from State and Federal Ministry of Agriculture Umuahia and Team of Bank officials for proper, strict drive and swift implementation of the Youths Empowerment Programs, to develop the states internally generated revenue, with vibrant strength of the Youths, boost food security of the states and nation through massive different Food production within and outside of neighboring countries, USA, UK, Europe, Asia and India, attract food exportation for foreign exchange.
Ibiam maintained that the role of Internal Security, Agriculture for business, the Establishment of Stabilization funds for Establishment of the Youths Farm Settlement in South East as a post-COVID-19 palliative to boost the economy is apt and applaudable adding that, their is need to beef up more Security at our Nation and State borders and boundaries.
He thank the President on his resolve to strengthen our security architecture to protect farmlands and Agriculture activities to encourage more participation in Agriculture by engaging youths to key into Agriculture programs and livestock in the 36 States of the nation, as this would keep the unemployed youths busy and sustain the livelihood of lots of families.
The Young pragmatic PDP stalwart called on Nigeria youths to take advantage of the CBN and Bank of Agriculture intervention programs which are currently available, by making contacts with the State’s Ministry of Agriculture on how to get involved, as this is utmost important now, to stimulate our dear State and Nations economy.
While advising the Governors of 36 States of Nigeria to sustain the provision of food palliatives to the poor and needy in our society, inline with Governor Ikpeazu example.
National Coalition of Youths Interest Groups..