Kogi State Deputy Governor, Chief Edward Onoja has applauded students of Igala extraction for their academic prowess and strife to make their marks in the academia.
Poised to encouraging academic excellence amongst students in the state, the Deputy Governor once again promised to mobilize funds through the Governor, his wife, elected officials and friends of the Igala Nation for the award of Five Hundred Thousand Naira to each of the first class graduates of the Igala extraction drown from tertiary institutions across the globe.
The Deputy Governor made this pledge at the 2020 annual Igala Education Summit (IEF) held in Anyigba.
While commending the late professor Francis Idachaba for starting IEF, Onoja noted that the summit being the 20th, and the N500,000 scholarship award increment which began last year is a pointer to the fact that the Igala people are more united and capable of sustaining noble projects.
His words; “Glory be to God for yet another year end, even as we commemorate the 20th edition of the Igala Education Summit – a triumphant milestone indeed. The next time somebody tells you the Igala are incapable of working together to sustain anything good for long, draw his attention to this noble project.
‘We will forever be grateful to the Almighty God for the life and times of our visionary son, late Professor Francis Idachaba, who founded this event and nurtured it through the early days. Prof was a globally renowned academic and had a vision to see an Igala nation that is distinguished by high and excellent scholarship.
“Last year when we gathered here, we honored Prof’s memory by rewarding outstanding academic performance by some young minds who we consider critical to the future we envisage for posterity.
29 sons and daughters of this ancient Kingdom who bagged 1st class degrees from various Institutions across the globe received personal commitments of half a million naira each from my boss Governor Yahaya Bello ably supported by myself and elected officials of the government from Igala land as well as kind spirited friends of the Igala. We have kept to our word and fulfilled the promise.
“This year I learnt that we have 39 applicants subject to verification from their respective Institutions. This increase not only gladdens my heart but shows clearly the effect of motivation. We will not drop the bar. We further commit that upon verification we shall repeat same scholarship sums as last year. We do so trusting that the beneficiaries will use the money to pursue further academic prowess.”
The Deputy Governor who assured that he will continue to invest sacrificially in the future of intelligent young minds, charged Igala Future leaders to produce 100 first class graduates in coming years, adding that they are the future of the Igala Kingdom, Kogi State and Nigeria at large.
“We will continue to pray for good health, long life and greater feats by our young minds. They are undeniably the future of the Great Igala Kingdom, Kogi State and Nigeria.”
He used the opportunity to express gratitude to the Governor of the State, Alhaji Yahaya Bello, who he described as great lover of education for his commitment to the cause of the project and for his continued support towards its sustenance, and to the Director General of the Summit for their dedication and passion to keep the dream going.
“I thank my wife, Her Excellency, Mrs Ejura Onoja, Senator Jibril Isah Echocho, Hon Abdullahi Ibrahim (Halims), Hon David Zachariah, Hon Abdullahi Hassan Baiwa and all Assembly members from Kogi East, Chief Okpanachi Ocholi (Pablo), Mr. Bolufemi Rotimi, Engr. Patrick Idoko and others too numerous to mention for all the sacrificial ways in which they have supported this event. Only God will reward you all.” he concluded.
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