Free Transportation: Gov Ugwuanyi’s Unbroken Gesture At Yuletide Sparks Celebrations
Christmas, as we all know, is a special occasion when Christians commemorate the birth of Jesus Christ. It is a significant global festival for Christians, which marks the day that God established His kingdom on earth with the birth of Christ Jesus, the Saviour.
According to Luke 2:11, “For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour which is Christ the Lord.”
The charm of Christmas can hardly ever be resisted. It is a season characterised by spiritual and sectarian activities – from masquerade displays to exchange of cards, gifts and sports contests. It is the period when cities wear new colours and rural communities host privileged men and women of honour.
In truth, the city offers its dwellers rare opportunities for prosperity just as the countryside revels in its tranquility spiced with that inimitable sense of community and humanity. But notwithstanding those city treasures, the village remains the compelling destination for parents, children and their other relatives at Christmas.
In years gone by, the true value of Christmas found vivid expression in the rural communities. This was when natives reconnected with their roots with so much glitz and glamour.
While parents held family meetings or entertained guests who had visited to welcome them back to the village, the excited child, in the company of his peers, would scoop mud from the backyard with which he moulded different sizes and types of imaginary creations.
On the flip ide, today’s child has his fingers on the computer keyboard or on the telephone, almost oblivious of the world around him.
The narrative has also changed for the adults. These days, the Yuletide obsession by families to return to their places of birth has been largely lost to liquidity crisis affecting families and/or the inability of parents to muster the resources needed to cater for the transportation of their loved ones to their places of birth.
For indigenes of Enugu State who live in these far-flung Nigerian cities, their story is different. As the 2019 Christmas season draws nearer, their distinct hometowns await their mass return with open arms. It is all thanks to the magnanimity of the governor of Enugu State, Rt. Hon. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi (Gburugburu), who, once again, is offering free transportation for the indigenes of the state who live in cities that are far from the Coal City.
The governor is only keeping faith with his unbroken gesture of ensuring that willing Enugu State indigenes who reside in other states are brought back home to celebrate Christmas with their kith and kin.
By this singular act of deploying government resources to convey those willing to celebrate the Yuletide in their communities, Governor Ugwuanyi was only sustaining his avowed commitment to philanthropy that is authentic and strategic. It is on record that he has continued to offer this yearly Enugu State Free Christmas Transportation package since he ascended the throne at the Lion Building.
This year’s package has been further enhanced to cover no less than 20 states and the Federal Capital Territory. The gesture also underlines Governor Ugwuanyi’s enduring commitment to ameliorate the suffering of his people as well as give them a sense of belonging because, as he always says, “Our people are the heroes of democracy and we must do whatever is possible and reasonable to enhance their wellbeing.”
From civil servants to traders, teachers, artisans, religious groups and other professional bodies, Ugwuanyi has not wavered in the numerous welfare schemes that cut across different classes and persuasions.
As Mr. Bob Itanyi, the managing director of ENTRACO rolls out the finer details of the free Christmas transportation package in earnest, it is gratifying to note that it has aroused wild celebrations across the states where Enugu indigenes reside.
Governor Ugwuanyi is, uarguably, a source of inspiration and emulation as he sets the standard on giving back to the society. It is, therefore, not surprising that even as some of his colleagues now strive so hard to emulate his legacy of generosity and putting money into good causes, the governor never ceases to empower his people in different ways.
Remarkably, more and more of the population of Enugu State indigenes who reside in other states that were not covered by the previous exercises had been clamouring for their inclusion in this year’s free Christmas transportation programme. And that is, precisely, what the governor has done by extending the offer to many other states within the Nigerian federation.
From these states and cities, numerous emotional tributes and words of gratitude that describe Rt. Hon. Ugwuanyi as “the most charitable governor in Nigeria” continue to pour in. Some of the cities earmarked include Abuja, Lagos, Ibadan, Makurdi, Port Harcourt, Jos, Kaduna, Kano, Minna, Ilorin, Gombe, Kebbi, Sokoto and Akure. Others are Zamfara, Jalingo, Lafia, Maiduguri, Bauchi and Damaturu, among others.
Today, as this humble servant to the poor moves to bring together members of the various families to celebrate the birthday of Jesus Christ with their loved ones, it rekindles the memories of old and affords the young and the elderly the dream opportunity to reunite with their childhood friends and folks.
It requires no power of divination to know that when these Enugu State indigenes besiege the various parks or garages to board the vehicles on their homeward journey, the frenetic noise, the riotous scenes and the big scramble shall serve to highlight the well-known fact that Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi is one ruler who has a soft heart for his people.