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Elumelu launches N2.75bn post conflict support fund

The Elumelu Nigeria Empowerment Fund N2.5 billion was on Thursday in Abuja formally launched for victims of conflicts in Nigeria. The fund was launched by…

The Elumelu Nigeria Empowerment Fund N2.5 billion was on Thursday in Abuja formally launched for victims of conflicts in Nigeria.

The fund was launched by President Goodluck Jonathan where he also made a commitment of N250 million to the fund.

In July, Mr Elumelu who is the founder of the Tony Elumelu Foundation made a pledge of N2.5 billion to support President Jonathan’s Victims Support Fund with the purpose of revitalizing the economies of post conflict and disaster communities across Nigeria.

Speaking at a separate event in Abuja yesterday after Jonathan had launched the fund at the Aso Rock villa, Elumelu said N1 billion was immediately disbursed to the Victims Support Fund in July while the remaining N1.5 billion now serves as the initial seeding for The Elumelu Nigeria Empowerment Fund.

He said the Fund will focus on communities like those in the Niger Delta and Jos.

“Rehabilitating distressed communities will require interventions not just from the government, but also from the private sector. Therefore, I am pleased to see that Tony Elumelu, one of our private sector leaders, stepped up in a big way – by making a major contribution to the Victim Support Fund and that his effort did not end there as he has now created the Elumelu Nigeria Empowerment Fund,” said Nigerian President Jonathan.

The Elumelu Fund aims to transform communities that have been ravaged by natural disasters, hazards and conflicts “into thriving and economically sustainable communities,” said Mr Elumelu. “The Fund will create opportunities and empower people in affected communities across Nigeria enabling them to rebuild their lives and businesses whilst instilling a sense of economic empowerment for the long-term.”

Chief Executive of the fund Dr Wieber Boer said two to three communities would be selected annually by the fund and assisted accordingly if they meet the criteria of a conflict ravaged economy.

He said the seed money would be shored up by donations from other individuals and organisations.

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