Osehobo Ofure

Truth is bitter is a popular adage. And it is the truth. I am still on my gist with my brother Edoko about people deliberately peddling falsehood, looking at some recent Social media posts which alluded to the notion that Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu choose to give out thousands of Awareness leaflets on Covid19, shared thousands of Hand sanitizers, and gave out huge quantities of assorted foodstuffs along with his wife and their friends, in 2019, for politics.These people don’t know that it goes beyond politics for the man and his wife. This is despite Pastor Ize-Iyamu saying repeatedly that as a couple, he and his wife, Professor Idia and their friends, derive joy from helping others and they did not start with the Covid19. The exact words of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu rings regularly in my ears: “Let me say clearly that we are doing this not for politics. We are doing it because there is a compelling need at this time to do it. Our plan is that every part of the state, in every ward, we should be able to touch a certain number of families”.I also recall that in 2017, no fewer than 267 Persons living with physical challenges, PLWPC, in Edo State, benefitted from a free medical screening exercise organized by Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and his wife. The Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu Medical Community Service Team who were on ground at the Salvation Army Center, Benin City, home for the physically challenge offered some tips for healthy living in brief talks during which they urged participants to make regular check up a part of their lives.This was before the Persons living with disabilities PLWPC and others were examined for different ailments such, Malaria, HIV, blood sugar, Dental Screening amongst others in the free exercise by the very Specialist doctors drawn from both the Public and private sectors. They also benefitted from the free distribution of drugs for Malaria and Typhoid, Hepatitis and Diabetes, Prostate status in men, Dental health and counseling for HIV/AIDS.Ize-Iyamu who was present with his wife, Dr Idia, as she then was, ( she is now a Professor) underwent medical screening at the exercise and said that the event was also designed to mark his wife’s birthday, June 21, as they both share the same date of birth. Commending the PLWPC for turning out in large numbers to benefit from the exercise, the clergyman turned politician said his solidarity with them would be permanent adding that regular health check up is a major key to the good life.He did say and rightly too that, “physical disability is not man made. God who made you that way has a purpose which you are alive to fulfill. My prayer is that your later life will be better than your former”. Lamenting the parlous state of infrastructure at the Salvation Army Centre, which made the venue for the event available, Ize-Iyamu called on the Edo state government to increase subventions due the centre as well as rehabilitate the dilapidated facilities or outrightly replace them with modern ones.On her part Pastor Dr Mrs Idia Ize-Iyamu said that the focus of the health exercise was preventive so that participants can get needed information about their health status while receiving free drugs and counsel for their challenges. On his part, Major Bramwell Chukwuemem, who is chairman of the centre in a remark, prayed that God will sustain Pastor Ize-Iyamu and his wife with his grace to continue the great work they have begun by dedicating their birthday celebration to helping PLWPC.Interestingly and earlier than the above, on two occasions separated by a year, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, again not for political gains, was at the International Centre for Missions, at Uhogwa in Ovia Northeast local government area where internally displaced Nigerians, victims of the Book Haram insurgency in parts of the country, Men, women and children were being sheltered.He was there in the company of his friends to donate clothes, food, water, soap and books to these Nigerians who have become refugees in their fatherland and said that, “I want to appeal to other well meaning Edo people that say these people are not our children: they are our children”. On one occasion he went to Uhogwa, Pastor said that the children have become, ” our children, “because what happened to them could happen to our children; so their problem is pur problem. Their comfort, it is our job to make them comfortable”.Recall that Edoko reminded me of the 40 youths drawn from each of the 18 local government areas of Edo state graduated with internationally acclaimed certifications on Web Design technology from the Complete Computers Technology Institute in Benin City‎ under Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s sponsorship. The youths included 8 females and underwent the three months training programme at the acclaimed Institute.Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, a former secretary to the state government sponsored the training saying the move was designed to bridge the yawning unemployment gap in the state. At the graduation ceremony he said this was due to the fact that the state government failed to create employment opportunities or provide an enabling environment for the private sector to thrive so they can create the necessary jobs.“Government has to encourage local initiative or provide the enabling environment ‎for the private sector to thrive and help reduce unemployment and crime”, he said. And the choice to train the youths in ICT skills was not even Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s idea. He said when he consulted with the National Youth Council of Nigeria in the state to nominate two youths from each of the 18 local government areas of the state for the training, he was sceptical if those selected would complete the programme.By attaining over eighty percent attendance in the 3-months programme which certifies them as internationally accalaoimed professionals in Web design technology, Ize-Iyamu said the youths have shown that they are hungry for improvement and empowerment. He expressed satisfaction at the performance of the graduates, adding that unless the capacity of Nigerian youths is boosted to the extent that they can fend for themselves, they will end up on the streets, waiting to be employed in the elusive job market.He then congratulated the graduating youths for their commitment to the training adding that with the certificate which is recognised worldwide and you can function and be recognised, they can either work with it anywhere in the world or operate on their own.The politician who rationalised including more women in the programme as he presented the best three graduating students, Lucia Idehen, Godwin Enakhu and Bart Okoudo, with Laptop computers while the others got cash gifts, was full of encomiums for the best graduate.The Vice-President ‎ of the National Youths council of Nigeria in Edo state Mr Michael Omomila, who congratulated Pastor Ize-Iyamu for his gesture, admonished other well to do Edo personalities to emulate him adding the programme had no political undertones as political affiliation has no bearing with unemployment.“The sponsor believes that by empowering Edo youths creatively, they will become professionals with requisite capacity to solve problems. I think his gesture is highly commendable as it will reduce the population of jobless youths in the state”.Earlier the Chief Executive of the Institute, Mrs Galiet Adeyosoye who said the centre was affiliated with International Information technology vendors like Microsoft, Oracle and Comptia among others and accredited to award the National Innovation Diploma, NID, by the federal government, congratulated the graduates for their achievements”.As if to counter notions that Pastor Ize-Iyamu was coming to Uhogwa for the first time, the Coordinator of the Centre, Pastor Folorunsho did say as I recall that, ” I am happy. I am delighted. I want to thank him(Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu) for always coming to support these children”.Mr Felix Akhabue, a serving Commissioner in the outgoing Edo state govermment said of Pastor Ize-Iyamu, “I want to thank him for opening our eyes to know that we have children like this”, referring to the Uhogwa IDPs. ” They are our children, they are part of our children. If not because of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, we won’t know that they are Here. So what he done some of us will come and build on”. #.Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s Passion for Benevolence
By Osehobo OfureTruth is bitter is a popular adage. And it is the truth. I am still on my gist with my brother Edoko about people deliberately peddling falsehood, looking at some recent Social media posts which alluded to the notion that Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu choose to give out thousands of Awareness leaflets on Covid19, shared thousands of Hand sanitizers, and gave out huge quantities of assorted foodstuffs along with his wife and their friends, in 2019, for politics.These people don’t know that it goes beyond politics for the man and his wife. This is despite Pastor Ize-Iyamu saying repeatedly that as a couple, he and his wife, Professor Idia and their friends, derive joy from helping others and they did not start with the Covid19. The exact words of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu rings regularly in my ears: “Let me say clearly that we are doing this not for politics. We are doing it because there is a compelling need at this time to do it. Our plan is that every part of the state, in every ward, we should be able to touch a certain number of families”.I also recall that in 2017, no fewer than 267 Persons living with physical challenges, PLWPC, in Edo State, benefitted from a free medical screening exercise organized by Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu and his wife. The Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu Medical Community Service Team who were on ground at the Salvation Army Center, Benin City, home for the physically challenge offered some tips for healthy living in brief talks during which they urged participants to make regular check up a part of their lives.This was before the Persons living with disabilities PLWPC and others were examined for different ailments such, Malaria, HIV, blood sugar, Dental Screening amongst others in the free exercise by the very Specialist doctors drawn from both the Public and private sectors. They also benefitted from the free distribution of drugs for Malaria and Typhoid, Hepatitis and Diabetes, Prostate status in men, Dental health and counseling for HIV/AIDS.Ize-Iyamu who was present with his wife, Dr Idia, as she then was, ( she is now a Professor) underwent medical screening at the exercise and said that the event was also designed to mark his wife’s birthday, June 21, as they both share the same date of birth. Commending the PLWPC for turning out in large numbers to benefit from the exercise, the clergyman turned politician said his solidarity with them would be permanent adding that regular health check up is a major key to the good life.He did say and rightly too that, “physical disability is not man made. God who made you that way has a purpose which you are alive to fulfill. My prayer is that your later life will be better than your former”. Lamenting the parlous state of infrastructure at the Salvation Army Centre, which made the venue for the event available, Ize-Iyamu called on the Edo state government to increase subventions due the centre as well as rehabilitate the dilapidated facilities or outrightly replace them with modern ones.On her part Pastor Dr Mrs Idia Ize-Iyamu said that the focus of the health exercise was preventive so that participants can get needed information about their health status while receiving free drugs and counsel for their challenges. On his part, Major Bramwell Chukwuemem, who is chairman of the centre in a remark, prayed that God will sustain Pastor Ize-Iyamu and his wife with his grace to continue the great work they have begun by dedicating their birthday celebration to helping PLWPC.Interestingly and earlier than the above, on two occasions separated by a year, Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, again not for political gains, was at the International Centre for Missions, at Uhogwa in Ovia Northeast local government area where internally displaced Nigerians, victims of the Book Haram insurgency in parts of the country, Men, women and children were being sheltered.He was there in the company of his friends to donate clothes, food, water, soap and books to these Nigerians who have become refugees in their fatherland and said that, “I want to appeal to other well meaning Edo people that say these people are not our children: they are our children”. On one occasion he went to Uhogwa, Pastor said that the children have become, ” our children, “because what happened to them could happen to our children; so their problem is pur problem. Their comfort, it is our job to make them comfortable”.Recall that Edoko reminded me of the 40 youths drawn from each of the 18 local government areas of Edo state graduated with internationally acclaimed certifications on Web Design technology from the Complete Computers Technology Institute in Benin City‎ under Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu’s sponsorship. The youths included 8 females and underwent the three months training programme at the acclaimed Institute.Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, a former secretary to the state government sponsored the training saying the move was designed to bridge the yawning unemployment gap in the state. At the graduation ceremony he said this was due to the fact that the state government failed to create employment opportunities or provide an enabling environment for the private sector to thrive so they can create the necessary jobs.“Government has to encourage local initiative or provide the enabling environment ‎for the private sector to thrive and help reduce unemployment and crime”, he said. And the choice to train the youths in ICT skills was not even Pastor Ize-Iyamu’s idea. He said when he consulted with the National Youth Council of Nigeria in the state to nominate two youths from each of the 18 local government areas of the state for the training, he was sceptical if those selected would complete the programme.By attaining over eighty percent attendance in the 3-months programme which certifies them as internationally accalaoimed professionals in Web design technology, Ize-Iyamu said the youths have shown that they are hungry for improvement and empowerment. He expressed satisfaction at the performance of the graduates, adding that unless the capacity of Nigerian youths is boosted to the extent that they can fend for themselves, they will end up on the streets, waiting to be employed in the elusive job market.He then congratulated the graduating youths for their commitment to the training adding that with the certificate which is recognised worldwide and you can function and be recognised, they can either work with it anywhere in the world or operate on their own.The politician who rationalised including more women in the programme as he presented the best three graduating students, Lucia Idehen, Godwin Enakhu and Bart Okoudo, with Laptop computers while the others got cash gifts, was full of encomiums for the best graduate.The Vice-President ‎ of the National Youths council of Nigeria in Edo state Mr Michael Omomila, who congratulated Pastor Ize-Iyamu for his gesture, admonished other well to do Edo personalities to emulate him adding the programme had no political undertones as political affiliation has no bearing with unemployment.“The sponsor believes that by empowering Edo youths creatively, they will become professionals with requisite capacity to solve problems. I think his gesture is highly commendable as it will reduce the population of jobless youths in the state”.Earlier the Chief Executive of the Institute, Mrs Galiet Adeyosoye who said the centre was affiliated with International Information technology vendors like Microsoft, Oracle and Comptia among others and accredited to award the National Innovation Diploma, NID, by the federal government, congratulated the graduates for their achievements”.As if to counter notions that Pastor Ize-Iyamu was coming to Uhogwa for the first time, the Coordinator of the Centre, Pastor Folorunsho did say as I recall that, ” I am happy. I am delighted. I want to thank him(Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu) for always coming to support these children”.Mr Felix Akhabue, a serving Commissioner in the outgoing Edo state govermment said of Pastor Ize-Iyamu, “I want to thank him for opening our eyes to know that we have children like this”, referring to the Uhogwa IDPs. ” They are our children, they are part of our children. If not because of Pastor Osagie Ize-Iyamu, we won’t know that they are Here. So what he done some of us will come and build on”. #.

By Editor

Teacher, Reporter, and Blogger

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