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Minister of Humanitarian Affairs Pledges Collaboration with NAOWA

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Grace Egila

The Minister of Humanitarian Affairs, Disaster Management and Social Development, Sadiya Umar Farouq has hinted that a partnership with the Nigerian Army Officers’ Wives Association NAOWA will assist in the empowerment of young widows of slain soldiers as well as youths and vulnerable Groups in the barracks.

The Minister made this known during the weekend when the wife of the Chief of Army Staff and National President of NAOWA Mrs Salamatu Farouk Yahaya led the association to pay her a courtesy visit in Abuja. 

 In a statement signed, Sunday, by the Special Adviser on Media Nneka Ikem Anibeze said the Minister urged NAOWA to take advantage of the Government Enterprise Empowerment Program to acquire interest-free loans for young widows to start small businesses and also register youths in the barracks for N-Power and N-Skills programs.

The Minister also stated that if NAOWA Children’s Schools qualified for the National Home Grown School Feeding Program, their pupils may also be enrolled to benefit from the feeding program.

According to the statement, Farouq promised a collaboration with the Nigerian Army Officers’ Wives Association in other areas of humanitarian support.

“As a result of our vast mandates in humanitarian and development, the Ministry will continue to collaborate with relevant bodies like NAOWA to enable us to attain our mandates.

“Given the fact that NAOWA has a wide coverage across the country and the fact that your activities are mostly humanitarian, l wish to assure you that NAOWA is a very relevant body the Ministry will be willing to collaborate with”.

Earlier, the leader of the delegation and President of the Association Mrs. Salamatu F. Yahaya MCIPM stated possible areas of cooperation with the ministry which included assisting the poor in the barracks especially widows, youth, and children through empowerment programs, sponsorships, donations, and training.

“NAOWA humanitarian activities include providing relief items to the needy, providing medical equipment to health care centers, paying medical bills of patients, empowerment programs for women and youths, through NAOWA skills acquisition centers, sponsorship for training, entrepreneurship training for youths, and provision of start-up grants for women in collaboration with SMEDAN.

“Due to the current natural and man-made disasters confronting the country, NAOWA target beneficiaries have increased rapidly creating difficulty for the Association in carrying out her humanitarian pursuits. This necessitated the need for collaboration with other institutions with similar mandates.

“NAOWA target beneficiaries are mostly widows, orphans, youths, IDPs and victims of natural disasters. Nevertheless, NAOWA has extended its target base to include sick persons who could not afford their medical bills, internally displaced persons, and religious/traditional institutions that have less privileged persons under their care”.

Mrs Yahaya also expressed interest in sharing initiatives, conducting joint humanitarian programs in areas of training and empowerment of vulnerable persons, donating required items to health care facilities, and distributing of relief items.

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