ADF fetes war veterans.

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ADF officials making presentation to some of the Biafra war veterans at Oji River,Enugu state,on Thursday,M/ay 30.

The Alaigbo Development Foundation(ADF),an Igbo pressure group with interest on the development of Igbo nation yesterday brightened hopes of living of some ex-soldiers who fought on the side of Biafra during the Nigeria civil wars,but currently abandoned at Oji River ,Enugu state rehabilitation home of civil war veterans.

The ADF President,Prof.Uzodinma Nwala,who was represented by Mr Osita Chukwuagbanarinam said the gesture was part of the organizations efforts in caring for the needy in the society, es most of them sacrificed their times and life to have fought for the peace and unity of Nigeia.

ADF President stated,”We have every reason to be here today to appreciate the fact that most of you paid the supreme price for our survival and the peace and unity of the country.But it pains us that you are in anguish after making those sacrifices for the nation. Therefore,We are here to appreciate you,to note your problems so we can reach out to both the government and other concsrned citizens especially of the Igbo race to come to your aid”.

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ADF during the visit donated some bags of rice and an undisclosed amount of money to each of the surviving families still living at Ojii River camp of the war veterans.

Appreciating ADF,Mr Gideon Njoku,78 years of age,who said that he hails from Umuonyeukwu village Ikeduru in Imo state,lanented that over 75 of them who fought on the side of Biafra during the wars,were relocated to Oji River War veterans camp from Government Technical College(GTC) Enugu premises since 1975 and gradually abandoned to survive on their own.

He lamented,”At the end of the Civil wars,we were quartered at GTC premises. We were treated to free meals and free medicare but those free meals and free medicare gradually seized after our relocation to Oji River war veterans home in 1975″:.

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According to him,it is only Seven of them out of over 70 Nigeria war veterans who were relocated to Oji River camp are still surviving.

He said most of them have died out of frustration, helplessness and abandonment both by ths arms of government and related families.

An 81 years old war veteran,Mr Sylvester Egbuna,who corroborated Mr Njoku’s statement said it is only by the grace of God that they are still surviving.

He disclosed that they currently survive at the mercies of God-fearing philantropist who often breeze in to donate both in cash and materials for their survival.

The veterans pleaded for support from humane organizations and people in the society in training and offering job opportunitues to their children.

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This writer was told the World Igbo Congress,USA chapter some years ago donated a Tissue paper manufacturing machine to the camp so they can utilise it to help thenselves.But the.most elder, Gideon Njoku disclosed that the machine never worked up to the date it was brought to Enugu.

In addition to food itens and cash donation,ADF came along with a qualifified medical nurse,who conducted medical texts on the people ,assuring them of free drugs coutesy of ADF thereafter.

The ADF women leader,Mrs Pauline Awuja,who was part of the entourage advised both the wives and children of the war veterans living at Oji River war veterans camp to continue to be of good behaviour ,promising that ADF is soliciting for help to come their way from Igbos living in diaspora.

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