New Akwa Poly Rector resumes office, Takes over from Israel Affia
The new acting rector of Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Dr. Moses Umobong has resumed office following the expiration tenure of the immediate past rector, Dr. Israel Affia.
At the taking over ceremony which took place at the council chambers of the institution, Ikot Osurua, Ikot Ekpene Local Government Area on Friday, saw the outgone rector handing over all the school documents at his disposal to the newly appointed acting rector.
Presenting the documents, the outgone rector, Dr. Israel Affia thanked God for taking from the beginning to the end of his tenure. Dr. Affia, who served for two terms of six years said he was happy to have finished his tenure in good health and still strong.
He noted that his position as rector of the institution was a race which he had passed through difficulties in the course of discharging his duties, adding that through the support of the Governing Council members, management staff and students he recorded successes in the institution.
According to him, “I want to thank God for the race I have just finished. I passed through a lot of blackmails, criticisms and frustrations, but God saw me through. My prayer is that God that saw me through will see my successor through.”
The two-term rector said he was leaving the institution better than the way he met it six years ago, and that he was fulfilled with his achievements. He used the ceremony to congratulate his successor, Dr. Moses Umobong on his appointment, praying God to help him succeed in his tenure even as he described him as his close friend whom he has been working together.
In his words, “I call on everyone to rally around my successor in office. I am available for any kind of advice he may need from me. Do not make those mistakes that I made knowingly or unknowingly.” Affia however, openly opologized to people he might have steeped on toes in the course of discharging his duties and pleaded for forgiveness.
In his acceptance speech, the new acting rector, Dr. Moses Umobong said he was honoured to have been appointed by Governor Udom Emmanuel and subsequently taking over the mantle leadership position of the institution.
He commended his predecessor, Dr. Israel Affia for successfully discharging his functions measurably in the past six years and congratulated him for his stewardship in the institution and prayed God to give him good hope in his subsequent and future endeavours.
The acting rector assured all members of the polytechnic community that a new dawn has come and that his administration is not only going to adopt a new and different approach to achieving the objectives for which the institution was established, but is also poised to encourage and promote an all-inclusive governance in tandem with global practices.
Dr. Umobong emphasised that the overall aim of the approach is to relaunch the institution back into the comity of renowned and preferred polyphonics nationally and internationally.
He maintained that the leadership of the institution under his watch shall strive to priorities the welfare and security of all staff and students of the polytechnic, adding that modern and critical infrastructure and resources necessary for effective learning shall be provided through collaboration with the government and relevant organisations within and outside the State.
Earlier in his opening remarks, the acting chairman of the Governing Council, Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic, Dr. Samuel Edet described the day as a history making day in the institution. He congratulated the acting rector on his appointment and called on everyone to give the same support his predecessor enjoyed while in office.
The Governing Council chairman warned everyone to allow the new rector function in his capacity for the benefit of the institution, saying that if the rector his given a free hand to operate, the polytechnic will grow. He urged the people of the polytechnic to pray for the new rector to succeed, noting that the future of Akwa Ibom children is at stake if the rector fails.
The handing over ceremony was witnessed by Governing Council members, management staff, head of departments, labour leaders as well as students of Akwa Ibom State Polytechnic.
(c) EMMANUEL AKPAN
Udom Emmanuel : Building The Future Through Education
Udom Emmanuel : Building The Future Through Education
By Uwemedimoh Umanah
It was Victor Hugo, a novelist and philosopher that said that , “he who opens a school door, closes a prison”. A school is where formal learning/ education is inculcated for the overall personality development.
Education is synonymous with development. Some the world’s most ravaging problems were solved through research findings. Research and scientific discoveries orchestrated the Industrial Revolution in England in 18th in the Century. The East -Asian Economic Miracle of the 1960s and the Meiji Restoration in Japan were fueled and reinforced by sound educational policies.
In Japan, for instance, the Meiji regime initiated a free, compulsory and qualitative education for Japanese. They were offered scholarship by the state to study science and technology courses in universities in the West. The Meiji regime made it an offense to deny a Japanese child education.
Interestingly, by the mid 20th century, Japanese graduates were competing favorably with their western counterparts and contemporaries in the area of science and technology. Interestingly it has one of the highest literacy rates in the world.
In Akwa Ibom, Governor Emmanuel’s educational policy aligns with the ‘Sustainable Development Goals’, which underpins that education should respond to the changing needs of society. He believes that ‘schools should become environments that develop individual capabilities and further the idea of democracy and sensitivity to social and ecological responsibilities’.
The Governor’s intervention in education is premised on his unruffled commitment to lay a solid foundation for the future. He also envisages a sophisticated workforce and optimum population for the state. In this regard, the Free and Compulsory Education has been strengthened through effective monitoring, training and retraining of teachers. To ensure that the Free & Compulsory Education Policy performs optimally, government provides a subvention of N100 and N300 to the schools for each pupils and student in public primary and secondary schools respectively.
The success of the Free and Compulsory Education depends on the quality of teachers in public schools. Governor Udom Emmanuel regularly approves the training and re- training of teachers to sharpen their skills and teaching capabilities. This program includes those at the Principal and Inspector ranks, for an efficient service- delivery.
Through the Inter -Ministerial Direct Labour Committee, over 364 dilapidated classrooms blocks in state- owned schools have been refurbished/ constructed to create a conducive environment for learning. Also, desks and office accommodation for teachers which were in gory states are being provided and rehabilitated respectively.
Worthy of note is the fact that Akwa Ibom is among the top 5 states with the highest number of public schools in Nigeria, totaling 1,402. Agreeably, it’s no mean feat to efficiently maintain infrastructure in these whopping number of schools. However, the administration of Governor Emmanuel has not reneged on its determination, zeal and commitment to the provision of a better environment for learning, in line with the Sustainable Development Goals.
To encourage more enrollment in universities, the Akwa Ibom State Government invests N600 Million Naira annually as West African Examination fees for indigenes of the state. The Governor sees this huge investment as a worthy gesture capable of growing the Optimum / Productive Population for the state.
My research reveals that Udom Emmanuel belongs to Neo- Liberal Economic persuasion. This School is the main proponent of globalization. Neoliberalism considers infrastructure as being catalytic to globalization.
Perhaps, this ideological thought has led to Governor Emmanuel’s unflinching penchant for quality infrastructure. For instance, the pace and quality of work on internal roads and lecture halls in state- owned tertiary institutions is unprecedented. Both campuses Akwa Ibom State University, Akwa Ibom State State Polytechnic, Ikot Osurua and College of Education, Afaha Nsit wear an impressive look in terms of road network, landscape and many other facilities. Interestingly, these institutions now have full accreditation, courtesy of the Governor’s dogged commitment to education.
Governor Emmanuel’s partnership with the Federal Government in educational has resulted in the siting and construction of Military Schools in the state. The state government has built and donated schools to the Nigerian Navy for a Naval College in Ikot Ntuen, Oruk Anam and the Nigerian Army in Efa, Etinan Local Government Area.
Another Federal Government educational project in the state which has experienced a leap through Mr Emmanuel ‘s strategic touch is the Girls Model Secondary School, Ikot Ekang, Abak from a near -abandoned project.
The Governor’s magic wand turned the facility into one of the most equipped schools in the country with a state -of -the -arts laboratory and library, modern classrooms, residential quarters for teachers, dormitories and teaching aid, dining hall, among others.
There are also qualified teaching staff that have made the school an enviable one. What makes it the more so, is the regular training and Re- training programs/ courses for teachers in state, courtesy of the Governor’s magnanimity and undiluted passion for education.
Critics may understandably question the Governor unwavering interest in intervening in some of federal projects. The Governor sees these project as being of greater benefit to the state, hence opportunities should be maximized for an enhanced capability.
Education is the greatest investment any Government can make for the citizenry and Governor Udom Emmanuel, through an unconventional business strategy, is a top -flier in this regard.
Uwemedimoh Umanah is a Public Affairs Analyst
CHECK YOUR WASSCE RESULTS, DISREGARD RUMOUR PEDDLERS
CHECK YOUR WASSCE RESULTS, DISREGARD RUMOUR PEDDLERS- A’IBOM GOV’S AIDE
All candidates who sat for the just concluded 2018 West African Senior School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) in the state have been urged to check their results at the respective available channels and pay deaf ears to idle gossips by sponsored media hirelings who are all out to mislead the public.
The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Education Monitoring, Mrs Idongesit Etiebet who confirmed this to our reporter in her office dismissed the widespread rumours making the rounds in some quarters that result of candidate of Akwa Ibom State who wrote the recent WASSCE would not be released due to the State’s outstanding debt to West African Examinations Council.
Mrs Etiebet who corroborated an earlier statement by the Commissioner for Education, Prof. Victor Inoka and that of Information and Strategy, Mr Charles Udoh, called on the general public to ignore such rumours as all Governor Emmanuel, being a responsive and responsible leader had fulfilled his part of obligation to the examinations council.
Maintaining that Mr Emmanuel considers all funds expended on education as major investments, she charged all detractors to join hands with the Governor in building a better Akwa Ibom State.
The SSA on Education monitoring also disclosed that civil servants in Akwa Ibom state have been paid June 2018 salaries, even when federal government Allocation -FAAC has not been released to States by the federal government.
She applauded the commitment of Governor Emmanuel in the payment of staff’s remuneration, pensions and gratuities.
Mrs Etiebet used the opportunity to intimate the general public that Governor Emmanuel’s Administration since 2015, has spent over 3billion naira in the payment of termly examination’s fees, placement examination(Common Entrance) fees, Basic Education Certicate fees, WASCE fees, NABTEB fees, etc., for all government owned primary and secondary Schools across the State.
She also commended the State government for the massive construction/rehabilitation of School blocks and other infrastructural developments recorded in other sectors.
Recall that last two weeks, the State Government under the able leadership of Governor Emmanuel had released almost 200million naira subvention, to various heads of public primary and secondary Schools in the State to take care of logistics and other expenses in running the school, to avoid hidden charges on pupils and students in public schools.
AKWA IBOM STATE NOT OWING WAEC FEES – GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL
AKWA IBOM NOT OWING WAEC FEES – GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL
Akwa Ibom State Government has dismissed reports in the media that payment due the West African Examination Council for indigenous candidates who sat for the May/June 2018 examinations has not been made.
Speaking on the matter, the Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Charles Udoh, explained that “the practice over the years has been that a down-payment of 40% of estimated total cost of WAEC fees is made before the commencement of the annual examination. The balance, according to him, “is usually paid after a reconciliation position is forwarded to the government by the body on conclusion of the examination.”
With the conclusion of the examination and a reconciliation position forwarded to the government, the commissioner said the balance payment had been remitted to WAEC. He therefore wondered why reports in the media tend to portray the state government in bad light over the matter.
He emphasised that “the administration of Governor Udom Emmanuel is committed to ensuring the success of the free and compulsory education programme in the state.”
This he said is underscored by the annual payment of WAEC fees for all candidates of Akwa Ibom State origin in public schools; massive construction and rehabilitation of school blocks and other facilities; regular payment of teachers’ salaries and entitlements; and release of subventions to heads of public secondary and primary schools, among other initiatives to strengthen the education sector.
Consequently, Mr. Udoh advised candidates who took the May/June 2018 WAEC and their parents not to be apprehensive, as he was sure the examination body will waste no time releasing the results since the balance payment had been made.
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