From Steve Oko, Umuahia
It was tears of joy weekend at Ngodo Isuochi country home of the member representing Isuikwuato /Umunneochi federal constituency, Hon. Nkeiruka Onyejeocha (APC), as she issued out cheques for the free registration of all West Africa Examination Council, WAEC candidates in public schools across the entire constituency.
Principals of all public schools in the two Local Government Areas that make up the federal constituency – Umunneochi and Isuikwuato, gathered in her home to collect the cheques amounting to N12, 765, 000 being the total cost of registration fee for all WAEC candidates in public schools for the May / June 2020 WAEC exam.
Apart from public schools, two missions schools – Methodist Girls Memorial Secondary School, Ovim Isuikwuato ( Onyejeocha’s Alma mater), and the Methodist Church Nigeria Wesley Int’ College, Isuochi, also benefited from the gesture.
Speaking at the event, the Deputy Chief Whip of the House of Representatives said the gesture was part of her contributions to ensure that youths in her constituency had a secure future.
Her words : “Providing education opportunities for our people is a key component of my representation, hence, I won’t stop until our future is secured.”
She noted that “education remains the bedrock of any society”, adding that no society has made a meaningful progress without paying serious attention to education and its sundries.
Continuing, the four -term lawmaker said :”having seen the power of education, I have undertaken to bear the cost of WAEC fees of all the public schools within Isuikwuato/ Umunneochi federal constituency.
“This is the way I want to increase human and capacity development in our communities and also stop our youths from leaving secondary schools without WAEC Certificate.”
Onyejeocha who said it was not in her nature to advertise her works but needed to celebrate this one to prove critics wrong, said the gesture would be limited to only indigent students in subsequent years.
Giving a brief history of what spured her into the gesture, the lawmaker said she spotted a teenage mother queuing behind widows during her empowerment programme in December 2019.
She said that on close inquiry the teenager narrated to her how she was put in a family way by a man in her bid to raise money for her WAEC fee which she eventually could not afford.