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2022: Sen. Ibezim tasks constituents on  optimism, says New Year promising

Anthony Iwuoma

Sen. Frank Ibezim, representing Imo North in the Senate, has assured his constituents of greater dividends of democracy in the New Year.

Sen. Ibezim, on Sunday, was engaged by some members of his Constituency at the home of one of his ardent supporters whose family organised a thanksgiving service to mark the one year anniversary of their father’s translation to glory.

According to the senator, his doors have remained open for people that come with ideas of what could be done for the good of the area.

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On the issue of community roads, he assured that with the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) sited in the area, it would be easier to get approval for the roads, leading to the NOUN.

He particularly cited the Enterprise Centre attached to the Computer-Based Test (CBT) Centre being built in the area, noting that lack of skill had been the bane of the youths, who have taken solace in criminalities and drugs.

However, the completion of the centre, he said, would now mean that the youths could acquire skills and  become useful to themselves and community.

Ibezim emerged as senator after a highly fractious and acrimonious contest that dovetailed into several court cases, which ended up at the Supreme Court.

Since his inauguration on April 27, 2021, he has not left anyone in doubt that he is more than prepared to give the people of Imo North quality representation.

One week after his inauguration, he set up and equipped functional constituency offices in all the six local government areas of Imo North with headquarter at Okigwe LGA.

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He appointed constituency officers and secretaries and other back up staff for each of the offices and placed them on monthly salaries.

A major project that is dear to the senator is  the Classroom Library Project, which he launched soon after inauguaration on 24th of May 2021 in Okigwe and Ehime Mbano Local Government Areas, respectively.

The Classroom Library Project is intended to stir up the love of reading in schoolchildren.

The project has received commendable reviews and wide acceptance, as top politicians, including the Senate leadership, well meaning and privileged Nigerians have not only pledged their support but are also sponsor setting up the classroom  libraries in schools in their respective domains.

In June 2021, Ibezim moved a strong motion of “Save Our Souls” wherein he prayed the Senate to intervene in the matter of Okigwe electricity supply challenge.

The motion received overwhelming support of his colleagues. He followed it up with a letter to the National Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, and diplomatic shuttles.

This ushered in a three-in-one response from the NERC, which agreed on transmission and distribution projects around Okigwe and its environs for immediate implementation.

The three projects include the completion of Okigwe 2 X 40 MVA, 132/33 KV Transmission Station, Construction of 36.02km 33KV line from Umuahia Tower to Okigwe Junction and Construction of 12.2km dedicated 33KV line JDP to Ihitte Uboma as well as installation of 33KV circuit breaker.

These projects are to be funded through a facility of the CBN and completed between October 2021 and June 2022. Part of it, including a solar power plant is already emplaced.

Also, in August, the senator enlisted the services of two ex-internationals, Casmire Mbachu and Obinna Obiaka to train Okigwe United FC.  He kitted and funded the team, and with logistical support from Imo State Ministry of Youths and Sports sent them to Enugu where they represented Imo North at the annual Coal City Under-18 Youth Soccer Tournament. The team returned from Enugu victoriously.

In September 2021, Ibezim facilitated payment of the N30,000 Federal Government Survival Fund grants to over 200 beneficiaries from Imo North, comprising artisans and self-employed individuals.

Again in October, 2021, the senator used his office to facilitate and support payment of Federal Government’s N60,000 MSMEs Survival Fund to over 150 beneficiaries from Imo North in order to provide immediate relief from the economic impact of Covid-19 pandemic.

Again, the senator facilitated payment of N500000 Covid-19 Relief Loan to over 100 constituents in the first batch of the programme that will see over 300 Imo North constituents benefit from the loan scheme.

Added to Ibezim’s largesse is the honour and cash awards to 18 primary school teachers in the zone.

He has also successfully secured employment for a great number of constituents in federal agencies, such as the Federal Road Safety Commission (FRSC) and the National Drug Law Enforcement Agency (NDLEA).

The constituents see Ibezim’s interventions in key areas almost on monthly basis as a good testimony of his effective representation and an answer to the yearning of the people.

To cap it all, the senator assured his constituents to come up with viable reports of things that needed to be done to enhance their fortunes and the zone, promising to look into and follow them up to logical and beneficial conclusion.