By Daniel Tyokua
Okam Forum, an association of natives of Orakam in Ogbadibo Local Government Area of Benue state, has unveiled plans for empowerment of widows and indigent students of the area.
Briefing journalists in Abuja at the weekend, chairman of the forum, Chief Emmanuel Ameh disclosed that widows and indigent students have been identified to be provided with support in different areas.
He said widows will be grouped in 50 clusters for small and medium scale enterprises or cottage industries like garri processing and palm oil processing, with N250,000 for each cluster totalling N12.5 million.
The chairman revealed that two hundred indigent school students will be given scholarship in secondary and tertiary institutions at N100, 000.
Ameh said Orokam has a high school drop-out percentage due to the inability of many poor distressed families to finance the education of their wards, with many identified brilliant students affected.
He also explained that the association during its 2023 bi-annual community service awards and recognition, slated for February 7, many national icons and members of the forum will be honoured for distinguished national service and commitment to community development within the Idoma Nation, and Nigeria as at large.
“We are going to flag off some Progressive Programmes through an endowment fund to bring relief to the downtrodden within Orakam and the Idoma Nation.
“There is going to be widows support group for small and medium scale enterprises, 10 in each cluster with 50 clusters for a start. N250,000 for each cluster gives N12.5 million.
“Indigent scholarship scheme for 200 students in secondary school and tertiary institutions at N100,000 annual school support. This will focus on brilliant students identified either as orphans or from very poor families who need support to progress in school, it will amount to N20 million”.