On Friday, 27th August, 2021, a Lagos-based businessman, Chief Patrick Obiora Okwuibe, paid a visit to his former primary school, Central School Ozalla in Nkanu West LGA of Enugu State, where he handed over school uniforms to 150 pupils of the school. The old school is now divided into School I and School II, though sharing the same premises.
Chief Okwuibe (aka Obinxe), the chief executive officer of Royal Regina Ind. Nig. Ltd, a civil engineering and construction company, who recently turned 50 years, said how on one occasion while on a visit to his village, he observed with dismay the pupils wearing what could better be described as rags to school. He said he was moved to offer some assistance to the pupils, an idea that gained immediate urgency when he realized that his 50th birthday was a few weeks away.
He therefore decided to use the gesture as a mark of thanksgiving to God for his mercies as he attained the golden age.
He told The Easterner: “My original intention was to make 50 school uniforms for 50 pupils, but when we approached the school authorities to identify the likely beneficiaries, we realised that a lot more pupils needed their worn-out uniforms replaced. From the initial 85, the number was increased to 120 and eventually to 150 as more and more pupils showed up with shabby uniforms and we had to accommodate everyone. We also contracted a small tailoring outfit around the school to produce the uniforms as a way of promoting indigenous enterprise, and it took them 6 weeks to deliver, and happily to our desired quality”.
The Easterner learnt that when the schools were contacted for the handover of the uniforms for distribution to the pupils, they expressed immense delight and gratitude but however pleaded that that the donor makes a personal appearance to meet with the pupils who were eager to meet him and also offer their prayers in appreciation.
Chief Okwuibe eventually honoured the invitation where he made the presentation to the overjoyed pupils. He also showed appreciation to all the teachers present at the event with the sum of N5,000 each and other gift items.
The donor addressed the pupils with light stories of his days as a pupil of the school from primary 1 to 19 between 1979 and 1985, admonishing them to be good pupils and pursue excellence in their studies and other school activities. He also urged them to live by good examples, obey their parents and teachers and aspire to contribute in making the society a better place for all, saying there was no goal they could not achieve if they made diligence and honesty their guiding principles.
The excited school children entertained the donor and his company staff with band displays, songs and dancing as well as prayers in expression of their joy and gratitude.