Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State has promised to give necessary support and provide an enabling environment for South African returnees of Ondo origin to start new lives.
Akeredolu, who received the returnees in his office at the weekend, represented by his deputy, Agboola Ajayi, also presented cash gifts of N100,000 to each of the 20 returnees for resettlement activities in their various communities.He described the attacks as unwarranted, barbaric and condemnable.
The governor, who charged the returnees not to be discouraged by what had happened to them but be ready to start a new life, assured them of his administration’s readiness to assist them in settling down in their various communities and ameliorate their present conditions.Akeredolu, who informed them that his administration had provided various windows of opportunities, including youths and women empowerment in agriculture, entrepreneurship, among several others, advised them to avail themselves with any of them to better their lives.
He also charged them not to be hostile with any foreigner around them. The governor appreciated the spirited efforts of the management of Air Peace Airline for its kind gesture by conveying the returnees to the country free of charge.
He also lauded the Senior Special Assistant on Diaspora Affairs, Fola Olasehinde-Vincente, on the success of the programme.
Meanwhile, Olasehinde-Vincente had earlier commended the state governor for his kind gesture and support given to the returnees to ensure they settle down peacefully and happily.
She equally admonished them to strive to integrate properly back to the society and eschew all forms of crimes and criminalities.
Some of the returnees, including Jenty Edisemi and Sholanke Omolara, who appreciated the state government for the support, said that their experience in South Africa was unbearable and very stressful.