An industrialist based in the United Kingdom, Aloysius Ihezie, is donating one million text and educational books to the Imo state government to boost Governor Okorocha’s free education programme.
Aloysius Ihezie, who is the Managing Director of Choice Textile Ltd based in London, says the gesture is a demonstration of the importance and value he attaches to education.
While presenting the Bill of Lading to Governor Okorocha in Government House recently, Victor Ihezie, the book Project Director, referred to comments made by Per Engebak, UNICEF Regional Director for Eastern and Southern Africa in which he stated that:
“No other investment has such a lasting effect as the education of children. Children who go to school are healthier, more self-assured and have far better prospects of employment. And of course, education has a major role to play in the fight against HIV”
Another UNESCO report stated that “…..Nigeria is home to the largest number of children out of school (8.6 million in 2007) is forecast to have as many as 8.3million children still not in school by 2015.”
In the south eastern states the increasing boy – child dropout rate is a serious concern and one which will have a detrimental impact on the future growth of the region.
Such disturbing figures lead Aloysius Ihezie to explain his decision to donate between two to three million textbooks in total over a five year period and to present these books to the children and students of Eastern Nigeria as one of the ways
to confront the problems facing child education.
Aloysius Ihezie added that Choice’s Project Director from Mgbidi in Oru West LGA would work closely with the state government to ensure the efficient management of the operation on the ground from the safe collection and movement of the books from Onne, PortHarcourt Seaport, to the warehousing,
sorting and eventual distribution of the books to schools and communities throughout the state.
It was confirmed that 9 containers holding approximately
350,000 books had already arrived at Onne.
Aloysius Ihezie further stressed that his overriding interest is to
support a programme that will help lift children out of poverty and ignorance and be of lasting benefit to future generations.
Responding, Governor Owelle Rochas Okorocha expressed gratitude to Mr. Ihezie and his Company for this very generous donation to the free education programme of Imo Rescue Mission.
The Governor urged other well-meaning Imolites to follow the example of Ihezie by contributing to the free education and other people-oriented programmes initiated by his government.
At the official launch in London Ambassador Dozie Nwanna, Deputy Nigerian High Commissioner, Dr Eric Uzoalor Representing Amb. Ralph Uwechue, President General of Ohanaeze, Barr. Ngozi Njoku, Director-General, Imo Foundation and Hon. Donatus Ozoemena, Deputy Speaker, Imo State House of Assembly, were present to accept the books on behalf of the state government.
Submitted by: Media Unit, Goverment House Owerri