The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) Family in Anambra State has again made laudable commitment to the fight against the coronavirus pandemic by taking urgent steps in ensuring that a standard COVID-19 testing centre is set up in the State and by sharing relief materials and cash worth millions of naira to the poor and vulnerable people.
In a press briefing organised by the Party at their State Secretariat on Saturday, 16 May 2020, the Chairman, Anambra PDP Palliative Committee, Dr. Mrs. Chidi Onyemelukwe, said that Anambra PDP had mapped out a total sum of N125,000,000 (one hundred and twenty five million naira) as a ‘post lockdown cash and other material welfare support’ to Ndi Anambra. Dr.Onyemelukwe explained that the total sum of N125,000,000 which was donated by the generous members of the Anambra PDP Family, would be channelled into ‘supporting our people, especially the most vulnerable ones, to get back on their feet’, while committing to set up a standard COVID-19 testing centre in the State.
Onyemelukwe stated that Anambra State deserved a COVID-19 testing lab owing to its economic and commercial importance to the country. She said, “Anambra State, owing to its economic and commercial importance to our nation, deserves to have a COVID-19 testing lab in place. PDP Anambra state, is therefore committing to setting up a standard COVID-19 testing lab within 21 days of adequate space being provided by either the Anambra State Government or in the alternative, the Federal Government”.
The Anambra PDP Family therefore requested the Federal Government of Nigeria and the Anambra State Government to provide them a space where they could set up the COVID-19 testing lab.
Onyemelukwe continued, “We are therefore requesting the Federal Government of Nigeria and the Anambra State Government to provide us a space either at Nnamdi Azikiwe University Teaching Hospital, Nnewi; the Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University Teaching Hospital, Awka; or any of the hospitals in Anambra State, donated to the Federal Government by the Catholic Church; to set up a standard COVID-19 testing lab for this purpose”.
It was also gathered from Dr. Onyemelukwe that each community in Anambra State would receive a total sum of N300,000 (three hundred thousand naira) to enable them to give 60 least privileged families in each community a total sum of N5000 each, to help them start life again, while food, cash and other items would be provided directly to each ward in each community.
She said “We will be donating to each community in Anambra State the sum of N300,000 (three hundred thousand naira). This will enable the communities to give 60 least privileged persons/families in each community N5000 (five thousand naira) each, to help them start life again and contribute to their business revival in this post lockdown era. N105,000 (One hundred and five thousand naira) will also be used to provide food, cash and other items, as palliatives, directly to each ward in our communities”.
Onyemelukwe also maintained that accountability and transparency, which PDP was known for, would be ensured in the disbursement of funds and distribution of the relief materials.
Appreciating the generous donors, the PDP Chairman of Anambra State, Chief Ndubuisi Nwobu said their sacrifices aimed at reducing the hardship experienced by the less privileged people of Anambra State were laudable. Chief Nwobu stated that the COVID-19 pandemic respected neither political positions, tribal origins nor religious affiliations, thus, everyone must unite and fight the pandemic as one family. He prayed to bless the generous donors and replenish their pockets.
Speaking through his Media Aide, Barr. Valentine Obienyem, the Vice Presidential Candidate of the PDP, in the last election, Mr. Peter Obi, who donated N40,000,000 (forty million naira) to the cause, disclosed that he was aware of the challenges facing the less privileged people of Anambra State, especially in this coronavirus pandemic. Obi said he will stop at nothing in helping people live well and stay safe during this pandemic. He praised the Anambra PDP Family, who in spite of the difficult times, rose to the challenge and made laudable sacrifices to help the poor.
On setting up a COVID-19 testing centre, Obi said it was needed urgently as the government needed to carry out more aggressive testing so as to ascertain the level of the spread of the infection in the State.
Obi said “considering the strategic role Anambra State plays as a commercial hub in the South East, it is imperative to set up a COVID-19 testing lab in the State”.
He assured that when the Federal Government of Nigeria or Anambra State Government provided a space, the COVID-19 testing centre would be set-up within 21 days