Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa

Dr. Nice Tobolayefa Alamieyeseigha, president and founder of Nice Esther for All Foundation (NEFAF) and Nice Esther Alamieyeseigha Rescue Initiative (NEARI), recently feted the physically challenged in Bayelsa State as part of activities to unveil her foundation.

Mrs. Alamieyeseigha, assisted by her husband, presented bags of rice, cash, wheelchairs and crutches to the disabled, with the assurance of an elaborate outreach programme for them in 2020.

She said the inspiration to start the foundation came from her mother, who placed the welfare and well-being of other children above that of her immediate family. While commending her husband, Godknows Alamieyeseigha, for his moral and financial support, she also commended the Ebenaaowei of Ogboin clan, King Oweipa Jones Ere, for rallying the Council of Chiefs to support her.

She said the foundation was established 12 years ago in Rivers State and has collaborated with several organisations, including the Nigerian Army Officers Wives Association, Rotary Club, UNICEF, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and many others to reach out to private-owned orphanages in Nigeria.

“The foundation has achieved landmarks through partnership with notable leaders, among who are former President Goodluck Jonathan, Governors Henry Seriake Dickson, Nyesom Wike and Senator Godswill Akpabio. The unveiling of the foundation in Amassoma was conceived to introduce it in Bayelsa State and use it as a channel to rescue the less privileged in the eight local government areas,” Mrs. Alamieyeseigha said.

She commended President Muhammadu Buhari for establishing the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development to cater for those that have become victims of unforeseen crises and promised to build an orphanage in Amassoma to help children.

Mrs. Alamieyeseigha drew attention to the philanthropic gestures of Bayelsa State Governor- elect, Chief David Lyon, noting that God has a way to reward cheerful givers.

“The victory of Chief David Lyon and his Deputy, Senator Biobarakumo Degi-Eremienyo, was made possible by God because of the philanthropic gestures and assistance that Lyon has rendered to the downtrodden in the society. I have implicit confidence in the ability of Chief Lyon to place the state on the fast lane of development and restore the lost glory of the state,” she said.

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She identified inadequate funds as a major challenge and hindrance to the operations of the foundation and solicited the support of government at different levels, well-meaning individuals and corporate organisations to enable her foundation touch more lives positively.

The second part of the event was the awards ceremony, where she was conferred with the Ijaw Youth Council (IYC) Golden Bride of Ijaw Nation Award, in recognition of her humanitarian services for women and youths.

President of the IYC, Mr Oweilaemi Roland Peretuobo, Mrs. Alamieyeseigha she was the first person to receive the IYC Golden Bride award.

He said, “The IYC is proud to be associated with the life-transforming activities of Mrs. Alamieyeseigha through empowerment of the disabled, physically challenged, widows, award of scholarship to indigent pupils and students, provision of housing schemes and donations to orphanages, granting of loans to businessmen and women, health outreach programmes among other empowerment programmes that have changed the narrative in Ijaw nation.

“IYC commends Mrs. Alamieyeseigha for her selfless service, sacrifice and using her worldwide travelling experience, resources and privileged position to lift the vulnerable from the doldrums.”

In her remarks, Mrs. Alamieyeseigha expressed gratitude to God for the award, especially coming from the foremost IYC, which has become the voice of the Ijaw in the Niger Delta, Nigeria and in the world.

“This award has added another golden feather to my array of crowns. This award is a major encouragement that will spur me to do more. I dedicate this award to the voiceless children and the vulnerable that cannot fend for themselves.”

She paid glowing tributes to former governor of Bayelsa State, the late Diepreye Alamieyeseigha, for blazing the trail of the Ijaw struggle for resource control and self-determination, adding that she would consolidate on the legacies of the late hero to achieve set goals.