PARTNERS WITH NATIONAL COMMISSION FOR REFUGEES TO RETURN THEM TO SCHOOL
ONWUASOANYA FCC JONES
The immediate past governor of Imo State, His Excellency Distinguished Senator Owelle Rochas Okorocha has expressed concern over the alarming number of Nigerian children forced to drop out of school in Nigeria, as a result of poverty, terrorism and other social and political accidents.
The billionaire philanthropist, real estate investor and political leader stated this when he led the management and volunteers of the Rochas Foundation College to formalize a partnership deal with the management of Nigerian Refugees Commission in Abuja.
"About 15 Million Nigerian children have been forced by situations beyond their control to roam the streets when they are supposed to be in school, while others are in different IDP camps in the country, as a result of terrorist insurgency and banditry. This is a disaster of unquantifiable proportions and everyone of means should join hands to get these children back to school."
"By 15 million children, we are talking about the population of some countries. This is a ticking time bomb, and we can only diffuse it with love. I don't mind giving my life savings to ensure that these children are taken out of the streets and returned to the classrooms." The former governor stated.
Amidst applause and emotions from his hosts, the Chairman, Senate Committee on Culture and Tourism traced the history of the Rochas Foundation Schools to over 20 years, within which period, the foundation has fully funded the education of 21,000 children from across Nigeria and in 12 campuses across the six geopolitical zones in the country. 4000 of these children have also gone ahead to secure tertiary education at different levels, while he has helped over 200 of them to secure employment.
The Federal Commissioner in charge of the National Commission for Refugees, Mr. Basheer G. Muhammed commended His Excellency for the unmatched and underreported humanitarian and nationalistic jobs he is doing through the Rochas Foundation and prayed God to reward him for his unwavering sacrifices to the educational and general welfare of Africa's poor children. Mr. Basheer welcomed the initiative of the Rochas Foundation to partner with the commission.
The Director-General of the Rochas Foundation, Ucy Okorocha explained that the foundation has collated the necessary data on the number of displaced children, the various IDP camps in the country and assured that the Foundation is committed to ensuring that no child is denied the right to go to school.