It was tears of joy, Thursday, when the guber candidate of All Progressives Grand Alliance, Mr Frank Nweke Jnr, distributed wheelchairs to People With Disabilities at Ibagwa, headquarters of Igboeze South Local Government Area of Enugu State.
Some of the beneficiaries prayed for the victory of the former information minister at the 2023 guber polls in Enugu State. They described his gesture as ‘divine’.
The chairman of the group, Christian Nnadi, said the gesture was received with joy across the state. According to him, members of the group are ‘determined to have their voices heard through contributing to the election of office-holders come 2023’, adding that ‘only Frank Nweke Jr and APGA’ had given them the assurance.
Quoting him, “I cannot tell you how much this means to me or how difficult it has been to move around. I have tried, unsuccessfully, to raise money many times. This is a life-changer for me. I can tell you that it is the same for my friends here too.”
One of them, Mrs Omada Veronica, with a congenital deformity, said she never thought she could be ‘remembered by anyone again’. She prayed for Frank Nweke Jr, adding that for her, ‘Nweke is already the next governor of Enugu State’.
In her words, “I am so happy. This is bigger than Christmas rice for me. I can’t explain it. I am someone that likes to work and be able to provide for myself but this life has been hard.
“To get this wheelchair after I have almost lost hope of anyone remembering me is so good. I thank God and pray that God bless Frank Nweke and APGA. He is my governor.”
Other beneficiaries, including Nnabike Ugwoke, and Ugwu Miracle, expressed joy at the new lease of life and sent goodwill messages to Nweke.
Nweke had on December 17, 2022, while in a town-hall meeting at Ibagwa in Igbo-Eze South LGA, pledged to provide ten wheelchairs and ten crutches to PWD in the local government area, which he said should be distributed to the most vulnerable amongst them.
The pledge was sequel to revelations from the group’s chairman, Mr Nnadi Christian Ikechukwu, and a member, Eze Chidiebere, that their members ‘have been neglected by the government and are facing untold hardship’.
Apart from making the promise to provide them with wheelchairs and crutches, Nweke stated his plans to run an administration that ‘prioritizes social equity and inclusion of every member of society, paying special attention to People With Disabilities’.
The presentation was made to them by APGA’s deputy governorship candidate in the state, Dr Edith Ugwuanyi. She said the fulfillment was a part of APGA’s philosophy of not making fake promises.
She said, “This provision is an urgent intervention, but there is more to come their way by God’s grace. Our desire is to use the powers of the office of the governor to bring comfort to the common man.”
She urged the group to ensure the equitable distribution of the items according to priority needs as they await for more in due course.
The APGA Nsukka zonal chairman, Chief Emmanuel Eze, said, “APGA is a party that doesn’t leave anybody behind in accordance with its name.”
Also present at the presentation were other APGA officials and candidates who made varying amounts of cash donations to Christian Nnadi for the association.
They include the Igbo-Eze LGA APGA chairman, Samuel Ugwu; House of Representatives candidate, Nsukka/Igbo-Eze South, Hon Ngozi Ugwu, and the Ezingwu ward chairman, Odo Simon I.K., also a person with disability.