A total sum of One Million Naira (N1,000,000) has been given by the United States of America (USA) Branch of the Ibibio foremost socio-cultural group, Akwa Esop Imaisong, as palliative to cushion the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on home members of the Union and other citizens of Akwa Ibom State.
The USA Incorporated Branch in a release signed by its President, Mkpisong Eyobong Usanga noted that the essence of the donation was to help Akwa Ibomites find their feet, following the scourge of the global pandemic.
Also appended by its Board of Trustee Chairman, Mr. Augustine Ekwere and the National Secretary of the organization, Atai Ima Jackson; the release conveyed the empathy of the branch Union, while praying for God’s intervention on the land.
“We are acutely aware of the havocs of the pandemic lockdown on the welfare and wellbeing of God’s children all over the globe, in particular, those at the lower economic scale. Hence, we pray with you that God, in His infinite mercy, rid the world of this menacing virus and heal the land”.
“In recognition of these challenges, your fellow members in the United States of America forward herewith the sum of One Million Naira in contribution to COVID-19 Pandemic Relief for members and fellow Akwaibom citizens in dire need of assistance during this period”.
They however instructed that the money be disbursed to families in cash and not converted to commodity, and that Five to Ten thousand naira be the limit disbursed to individual families.
Receiving the donation, the Ntisong 111 of Ibibio Nation, Engr. Essien Ekidem thanked the diasporan branch of the Union for their thoughtfulness in looking out for their brothers.
He gave the assurance that modalities for the disbursement of the money would be fair as instructed, while charging recipients of the cash donation to make judicious use of it.
The Monarch also called on other public-spirited Ibibios to emulate their brothers in the diaspora by extending their mite to fellows around them who are going through hard times.
In his address to beneficiaries at the donation, Chairman of the disbursement committee, Dr. Okon Emah, informed that the beneficiaries were carefully selected across the 18 local government areas of Ibibio nation, and that the money will be paid to them directly.
One of the beneficiaries, an Uyo-based foodstuff dealer, Mrs. Victoria Eyo recalled that she had resorted to buying her stock in little quantities following the post-covid era and would be glad to resume large-scale purchases courtesy of the money given.
Another recipient, Mr. Akpan lauded the diasporan community’s concern and support for the Ibibios at home, while praying God’s blessings on them.
Meanwhile, a member of the organization, Mrs. Etido who also had kind words for the diasporan Union has tasked them to remember those at home and think of ways of helping the youths search for and find greener pastures in better clime. This, she said, will double the pool of kind-spirited individuals abroad and better the lots of many struggling youths of Akwa Ibom.
Highlights of the event were the orderly disbursement of the donated funds and subsequent appreciation of the donors.