Alumni Seeks End to Poverty, Reaches out to Indigent Students

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Omolabake Fasogbon

The University of Lagos (Unilag), Alumni Association, (1989- 1991) has urged the  federal government to employ all means to tackle poverty in the country, just as it donated food items and groceries to about 500 indigent students of the university.

The Nigerian economy has been projected to grow at 2.2 this year, regardless, the World Bank has maintained that poverty in the country would remain unchanged, just as the number of poor Nigerians recently hits 91 million.

President of the association, Mrs. Abimbola Omotoso, noted that the most affected by this menace was the common man on the street, who also happens to have children in institutions of learning. Omotoso saw education as one of the ways to tackle  poverty in  the country, hence, the association’s gesture to improve education outcomes both in the institution and the country as a whole.

She said: “We have decided to come back to our alma mater, 30 years after we left, to give back to an institution that has shaped us to be what we are. We are aware that poverty rate in the country is quite astronomical, and we know once food has been taken care of,  every other thing  come under control, hence,we decided to kick off our gesture with donation of food items and groceries to not less than 500 students in the university in order to address their basic needs.

“Although, the donation is part of the activities line up for our reunion week, we intend to sustain this to make it run for at least twice in a year. We are marvelled by the turn out and the feedbacks  we received today , and so, we realise we must do more to realise our objectives of making studies easier for students. Hence,we have concluded to double up our efforts to carry along more members in diaspora and  within the country as well as conglomerate, so we can pull more resources to address other  needs beyond the basic.”

The Head, Uresource Committee Drive, the welfare arm of the group, Mrs. Afolake Laoshe, expressed satisfaction in the programme, adding that the group was able reach out to the right students.

“We went through the right protocols to ensure that we  give to people that actually deserved our gesture and I’m glad we did.We plan to do more in the area of mentorship , schorlarship and other areas as soon as possible. We have started by addressing basic needs because we know that an angry man is an hungry man. Having done this,we see no reasons why the students won’t face their studies,” she said.

National Secretary of Unilag Alumni Association, Dr.Aaron Akinloye , implored the beneficiaries to work hard and stay away from distractions that would keep them away from their studies. He equally urged  them to be socially responsible to the institution after they might have graduated.

One of the beneficiaries and a 500- level students of the department of pysiotherapy, College of Medicine, Unilag, Bolarinwa Abass, thanked the association for the gesture and promised to return to the school to do same after his graduation.