Appeals to Government for partnership to reach out to more people in the state
By Binebai Princewill
As today marks the third day of the additional 14 days extension of lockdown in the state to avert the spread of coronavirus, Deltans have continued to groan in pains and hunger as they struggle to survive, the story is entirely a sad episode in Okpito estate in Udu, a slum in Odu Local Government Area of Delta State.
Barely few days of reaching out to over 100 Households In Ekete community, Udu Local Government Area by the Ernest Bebenimibo Foundation with breakfast packs presented to the elderly and vulnerable in the community, late yesterday the foundation received a distress call from the slum.
In responding to the distress call, the Ernest Bebenimibo Foundation quickly mobilised for a rescue mission to Okpito estate in Udu with provision of 70 breakfast packs to the people living in the estate.
Narrating what he saw at Okpito, founder/chairman of the Ernest Bebenimibo Foundation, Mr. Ernest Bebenimibo hinted The Liberator Newspaper that life is hellish to the people living in Okpito estate.
In his interaction with them, they told him that they managed to survive the first 14 days lockdown as it was a miracle and thanked God for their survival, adding that with these additional days, without any rescue from anywhere, they may not survive it as hunger is striking them so hard as they are gradually starving to death if nothing is done about their situation.
However, Ernest Bebenimibo, boss of the foundation had opined that he was able to reach 70 households with breakfast packs, stating that there are over 150 houses in the slump.
He explained that the people are really passing through terrible living conditions in the area, Ernest particularly maintained that residents of the slum comprises of Christians and Muslims.
Speaking further, Bebenimibo said even when there is no lockdown in the state, the people in Okpito estate in Udu are suffering, maintaining that it becomes worse with the lockdown and its extension.
While providing the breakfast packs to the households, the Ernest Bebenimibo Foundation had preached the message of safety to the people, hammering on the importance of social distancing, good hygiene, watching of hands frequently with liquid soaps as well as the use of hand sanitizers.
In speaking on the deadly nature of coronavirus, Ernest told the people of Okpito estate that it is better to go hungry for few weeks than to be killed by the deadly virus.
Mr. Ernest Bebenimibo particularly urged the people to continue to obey the directives of the governor, adding that it was for the best interest of Deltans.
He therefore appealed to those in charge of the Delta State Government food bank to take special note of these group of people in Okpito estate in Udu Local Government Area of Delta State.
Meanwhile, Chairman of the Ernest Bebenimibo Foundation, Mr. Ernest has called on the Delta State Government for sponsorship to enable the foundation reach out to more households in the estate and others facing varying terrible conditions in the state as the NGO is getting more of such calls on a daily basis.
He also called on other well meaning individuals to assist the needy in this trying time, adding that people are really suffering.
In their separate messages, residents of the slum appreciated the Ernest Bebenimibo Foundation for coming to their rescue, praying that the foundation and its boss shall never lack anything in life as they would experience unprecedented increase from all ramifications with long life and prosperity.