FG: Flight fares for prospective corps members should be subsidized

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Families of prospective National Youths Service Corps members who died in a tragic accident en route to Katsina State for the mandatory one-year program have urged the Federal Government to subsidize flight fares for all NYSC members in order to prevent similar tragedies in the future.

They also demanded that the government organize transportation for NYSC members and work with reputable registered companies to transport them to their primary assignments.

On Wednesday, the bodies of the five members killed in the accident arrived at the Victor Attah International Airport in a C–30 Nigerian Air Force plane marked NAF 917, where they were met by their relatives in tears and grief.

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Innocent Upere and Victor Akpan, both graduates of Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic’s Mass Communication program; Miracle Asuquo, a psychology graduate; Stella Ekikoh, a sociology and anthropology graduate; and Coleman Ezuruike, a history and international studies graduate, were among them.

Nsikak Akpan, a member of one of the bereaved families, spoke to our Uyo correspondent on the phone on Thursday, pleading with the state government to look after her other siblings at home.

“For me and my family, this is not the best time. Consider this: my brother had never traveled by air while alive, but his body was flown back home in a plane. “I wish the state government could look after my other siblings,” she expressed her wish.

Revd Isaiah Ekanem, an uncle of one of the deceased, also spoke, identifying the challenges of the NYSC, which included road accidents, and requesting that the federal government post corps members within their geographical zones to avoid such occurrences.

“To avoid future incidents, the FG should subsidise flight fares for corps members deployed to long distances for their primary assignment,” he said.

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