Onitsha-Igwe Nnaemeka Achebe of Onitsha has announced the introduction of an economic empowerment programme by the Onitsha Community COVID-19 Response Team (OCCRT).
“It is part of a strategy for medium to long term sustainable interventions in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
A statement released by Ime Obi noted that it had become clear that the global recession arising from the COVID-19 pandemic, would adversely affect Nigeria over the medium term, and there was a need to plan for how this would affect the community.
It adds: “the difficulties arising from the pandemic should be turned into an opportunity for lifting Onitsha out of poverty’’.
The economic empowerment programme was being designed to change the mindset of Onitsha people from a welfare mentality to a more productive, and entrepreneurial mindset.
“It also aims to foster the adoption and support of wealth creation, and long term capital development initiatives across existing organs of the Onitsha community.
“Key aspects of the programme include Value Reorientation, Database Validation, Training and Development, Microfinance Bank and MSME Funding.
“Others are Cooperative Society, Business Incubation, Mentorship, and Women Empowerment.’’
According to the statement the economic empowerment programme has been conceptualised by a panel of Onitsha experts, who have been charged by Igwe Achebe to map out strategies to support the struggling and budding entrepreneurs in the domain in weathering the COVID-19 storm.
The statement noted that It would build on a 2017 project with the theme: “Take Onicha Ado N’Idu to the Next Level’’, which explored developmental and repositioning needs of the ancient community.
No fewer than 97 persons from eight countries, including various parts of Nigeria, Africa, Europe, and the U.S., participated in the online town hall meeting, held on August 22.
Besides discussing the economic empowerment programme, participants also focused attention on the implementation of the ongoing OCCRT activities.
Areas covered include fundraising, palliatives distribution, medical outreach and response, and voluntary COVID-19 testing.
The online Town hall meetings have been introduced to ensure that Igwe Achebe interacted directly with Ndi Onicha worldwide on the activities of the OCCRT.
The maiden edition was held on Saturday, June 20.
Source: Government of Ekiti State, Nigeria