Eye Witness Reports
A total of 68 less privileged students of Ebonyi State origin studying in different tertiary institutions have received education grant from Ebonyi State Union in United Kingdom as part of its scholarship scheme.
The benefiting students were drawn from the 13 Local Government Areas of the State and each of them received a grant of fifty thousand (N50,000.00) naira.
Speaking at the official disbursement of the grant held at Ebonyi Shopping Mall, yesterday, the President of Ebonyi State Union in United Kingdom, Mr Chukwuemeka Umoke who was represented by the immediate past President, Dr Nnanna Elias Igwe, said it was part of the Union’s efforts to support Education in the State.
According to him, the beneficiaries were selected on merit devoid of any form of favoritism.
Igwe who was a Governorship Aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the 2023 general elections, disclosed that the program had become an annual event aimed at assisting the less privilege students of Ebonyi State origin studying in different tertiary institutions in the country.
He said: “All of you who got this grant should know that you were selected based on the application you made. It was not based on any form of favoritism. It was not based on who knows somebody, because often times, if something like this wants to happen, it’s based on who you know, but this is not so. I’m very sure that none of the beneficiary knows me in person or has ever seen me or contacted me during the selection process.
“We do our things for others to emulate. Before this program, we disseminated the information in all the LGAs and going through the applications we selected five persons per local government area.
“The President said I should tell you to make good use of this money. You may think the money is small but the people that brought it are not in government. It’s from their private pockets. This is aimed at supporting the less privileged students of Ebonyi State origin. The people we gave similar supports in the past used it to impact their lives and helped their families. Try to emulate them.”
Igwe explained that the Union received over 1444 applicants but after rigorous scrutiny, they selected five persons per local government area, making it a total of 65 persons plus three special cases.
“You’re very lucky to have been chosen. We received a total of 1444 applications and carefully scrutinized them and got five persons per local government, that’s, 65 for the 13 LGAs. There are three people that have special cases, two of them are physically challenged and the other person was someone we gave education grant before but he lost admission, making it a total of 68 persons that benefitted,” Dr Igwe explained.
Earlier, the Chairman of the occasion and pioneer President of the Union, Dr Mike Abani, lauded the Union for always standing out for others to emulate.
He urged the beneficiary to make judicious use of the grant.
The Ebonyi State Commissioner for tertiary Education, Professor Amari Omaka, SAN, who was represented by Mr Agha Obinna commended the Union for the initiative and called on other Unions to emulate them, even as he disclosed that Ebonyi State government was committed to ensuring accessible and qaulity education to the citizenry.
Others who spoke including the Ebonyi State Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Prince Oguzor Offia Nwali, the Lawmaker representing, Ezza South State Constituency, Hon Friday Ogbuewu and the State Chairman of Nigeria Union of Journalists, Comrade Nwafor Samson, lauded the Union for the initiative and urged the beneficiaries to make good use of the grant.
The benefiting students and their parents who took turns to speak at the event thanked the leadership of Ebonyi State Union in United Kingdom for the kind gestures and pledged to utilize the money.