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Abia commissioner charges orphanages on illegal operators and child traffickers

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Abia State Governor, Dr Okezie Ikpeazu<br />

The Abia State Commissioner for Strategy and Social Development, Chief Obinna Ekekwe, has urged members of the state Association of Orphanages And Homes Operators of Nigeria (ASOHON) to assist government in fishing out and prosecuting operators of illegal orphanage and child traffickers in the state.

Ekekwe, who spoke when ASOHON members visited him in Umuahia, said government had, in its re-determination to curb illegal child trafficking and associated crimes, set up a committee that was already working out modalities to re-validate operators of such homes in the state.

Leader of the delegation and Grand Patron of the Southeast chapter, Chief Akpulonu Godson, who was in company of some state officers, including Mrs. Von Obiegbunam, commended Governor Okezie Ikpeazu for creating the ministry to oversee social development, check child trafficking and abuses, etc.

“Child trafficking has been a menace in our society; hence ASOHON resolved to partner with government, security agencies and other relevant authorities to put a stop to it,” Akpulonu said.

Meanwhile, 54 communities are to receive N348. 9million under the World Bank-assisted Community and Social Development Project (CSDP) programme for poor communities in the state.

This is to enable the communities execute the projects that they applied for and were approved for them in accordance with the CSDP programme.State CSDP General Manager, Dr. Peter Chinatu Njoku, told The Guardian, yesterday, in his office during the disbursement of N43, 065,095.55 to 32 of the 54 benefiting communities of programme since additional financing started in 2016.

He said each of the 54 communities are to execute at least two micro projects approved for them as per their application and listed such projects as water, electricity, rural roads, health centre, toilets, markets, etc, which according to him, are micro in nature.

“The CSDP programme has propelled increase in school enrollments in the rural poor communities and given the benefitting poor communities access to infrastructural facilities, in line with the objectives for which the governor sustained the partnership with the World Bank,” Njoku stated.

Reacting to the disbursement, two leaders of two benefiting communities- Osonwa Ibe Egbuchi, whose Akanu Ukwa Ohafia Community got N2.4million to the execute their multipurpose centre and Chief Nnanna Uduma of Akajuba Ugwuoji Amaekpu, which N1.7million to build three classroom blocks-said their communities would not easily have executed these projects without assistance and commended the state government and the World Bank for partnering to assist poor communities through the CSDP.

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