By Amuda Dan Sulaiman Fab
It was a great relief for parents and guardians of some students of tertiary institutions in Kogi State recently, when a philanthropist and the governorship candidate of the Action Alliance (AA) in the November 11 polls, Mr. Olayinka Braimoh paid the school fees of 150 students.
While receiving the cheques in Lokoja for the school fees on behalf of others, Comrade Saliu Abdulsalam said the kind gesture of Braimoh to the students was novel as there has never been any politician in the state who deemed it fit to pay school fees of students in tertiary institutions.
Abdulsalam who described the school fees payment as timely, said some indigent students had already lost hope of joining their colleagues to write the examination for the current semester and that God had used the governorship hopeful to wipe away their tears.
Also, the president of the National Association of Kogi State Students (NAKOSS), who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Comrade Akande Ezekiel, described Braimoh as a Godly and reliable man adding that unlike other politicians who are fond of making bogus and empty promises, Braimoh has proved that if given power he will not fail the youths and the poor masses.
Also speaking at the Cheque presentation ceremony, one of the students’ leaders, Comrade Lydia Stephen said: “As you have wiped off tears and put smiles on the faces of orphans and hapless students, God Almighty will continue to bless you and bless your generation and you will not know any shame in life”. The students thereafter collectively promised to support the aspiration of the Action Alliance (AA) governorship candidate
One of the parents of the beneficiaries, Mrs. Magdalene Ojoneme who lost her husband last year in an auto crash said life became miserable for her and her five children after the death of the husband and she was contemplating withdrawing her son, Atuluku, a 200- level student of Kogi State University, Ayingba when help suddenly came from Braimoh
With tears welling up in her eyes, the widow narrated the huge debts she had incurred in her bid to feed and train her children and prayed profusely for Braimoh for providing succour to her family members.
Responding, Mr. Braimoh urged the students to face their studies and shun anything capable of truncating their future as he said the present and future of Nigeria belongs to the youths and that they must work very hard now to become great in life.
Braimoh who frowned at some politicians who are unnecessarily taking advantage of the youths urged the students not to allow anybody to use them for thuggery in the forthcoming election in the state.
He disclosed that he has been paying the school fees of hundreds of students both within and outside the state for the past 10 years without making any noise about it.
He said, if elected as Governor, he would create a conducive environment for everyone in the state, including students, to make legitimate money as Kogi has no business with poverty.
“I will rather teach you how to make money and make you employers of labour. Please, don’t vote for me because I paid your school fees but vote for me based on my capacity and competence because the next election is not about me but about your future and the future of the state”, he added.