BY SUNNY A. DAVID
Ten inmates from Home for the Mentally Challenged, Nteje who have been treated, rehabilitated and certified healthy were formally rejoined with their respective families by the wife of Governor of Anambra State, Chief Dr Ebelechukwu Obiano.
The ten inmates, four women and six men, including a teenage boy, brings to one hundred and ten persons the total number of inmates who have been treated, rehabilitated and rejoined with their different families so far since the centre was established in 2015.
The Governor’s wife, Chief Dr Obiano also commissioned the centre’s refurbished Sickbay, which has a supervising doctor, and would give the inmates and their caregivers access to healthcare, as well as a skill acquisition .
The event which attracted women groups was also used as a platform for an early commemoration of the International Women’s Day, which falls on the eight of March every year.
Addressing the crowd, the Governor’s wife while recalling her years of work of charity, restated the determination of her NGO in giving hope to the less privileged persons adding that her belief in the core values of sharing would never wane.
She described the centre as her brainchild and appealed to Ndi Anambra to reach out to the inmates of the centre with donations as the demands of the centre, especially in the area of feeding, are enormous.
She acknowledged the immense support of Governor Willie Obiano to running of the centre which she noted has been remarkable to the survival of the home.
On his part, the Speaker of Anambra State House Assembly, Right Honourable Uchenna Okafor, who promised that the state’s legislative arm would give support to the home, added that the Governor’s wife, through her NGO, CAFE, has set a great example of charity which would remain indelible in the heart of mankind.
In their separate remarks, the Member Representing Nnewi North at the Anambra State House of Assembly, who is also the Chairman House Committee on Gender Affairs, Honourable Nonso Okafor, pledged to build a new house for a widow in his constituency, in emulation of the Governor’s wife.
The Commissioners for Trade and Commerce, Mr Uchenna Okafor and that of Health, Dr Vincent Okpala, described the success of the centre as perfect reflection of Chief Dr Obiano’s life as a pillar of benevolence.
The Commissioner for Public Utilities, Engineer Emeka Ezenwanne, also announced that Governor Willie Obiano has approved a budget for the immediate installation of electric transformer and fifty KVA generators in the home.
Earlier in her address, the Anambra State Commissioner for Women and Children Affairs, Lady Ndidi Mezue who noted that the centre has witnessed a geometric increase in the number of inmates as a result of constant relocation of mentally challenged persons from the streets by the Ministry, lauded the Governor’s wife for using her NGO to feed and cloth more than eighty-eight inmates of the home.
In an interview, the Special Adviser to Governor Obiano on Chieftaincy and Town Union Matters, Barrister Vera Okonkwo and the Transition Committee Chairman of Oyi Council Area, Engineer Nnamdi Nwadiogbu, said that the idea of setting up a skill acquisition centre in the home would further add value to the goal of the project.
One of the rehabilitated inmates, Mrs. Chinyere Egolum from Nise, Awka-South Council Area, commended Anambra State government for giving meaning to their lives.