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NEW REALITY FOR EDUCATION IN RIVERS STATE 

BY SIMEON NWAKAUDU
One of the sectors completely destroyed by the immediate past failed Amaechi administration in Rivers State is the education sector.  The former governor embarked on cosmetic projects that left the sector devastated.
As a result, the restoration of this sector was one of Governor Wike’s pledge to Rivers people.
Fundamentally, the Rivers State Governor pledged during the electioneering campaign  to establish a College of Medical Sciences at the Rivers State University to help train qualified health professionals to uplift the state’s health sector.
With less than one year in office, Governor Wike took very concrete steps to actualise his vision to train medical doctors and other health professionals at the Rivers State University.
On 9th April, 2016, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike laid the foundation for the construction of the College of Medical Sciences at the Rivers State University. This ground-breaking event was part of the 28th Convocation of the university.
That singular act of vision set in motion the process of taking the Rivers State University to the next level.
The investments of the Wike administration in this sector have yielded positive fruits. The College of Medical Sciences is up and running. The National Universities Commission approved its existence while a Provost has been appointed for the college.
Pioneer students have been admitted into the College and other processes are fully on course. The Rivers State Government is re-equipping and upgrading the Braithwaite Memorial Specialist Hospital to serve as the Teaching Hospital of the College of Medical Sciences.
The College of Medical Sciences building has been delivered.  It is about the best in the entire country.  It has lecture theatres, exquisite classrooms, laboratories and tastefully furnished offices for the academic and non academic staff.
The Wike administration has also completed and commissioned the Faculty of Law Building and the Faculties   of   Management   and   Environmental   Sciences buildings.
Also delivered by the Wike administration at the Rivers State University is the Faculty of Science and Technical Education Building.
Provost of the College of Medical Sciences, Prof Raphael Oruamgbo said the Faculty will produce the needed manpower to drive the growth of the health sector in the coming years.
 Chairman NMA Rivers State, Dr. Dantonye Alasia commended Governor Wike for     his Committment to the  advancement of Medicine and Healthcare through improved access for Medical Education with the Establishment of the  Rivers State University College Medical Sciences, the Commissioning of the College Building and the Award for Scholarship’s for Medical Students.
He added that this is the golden era of healthcare delivery, following the upgrade of the Braithwaite Memorial Specialist Hospital to serve as the Teaching Hospital of the College of Medical Sciences.
Rivers State Health Commissioner, Professor Princewill Chike said that the medical world is excited on what Governor Wike is doing in the health sector.
Vice Chancellor of the Rivers State University, Professor Blessing Didia for over four decades successive governments in Rivers State struggled to establish a medical school without success. He said that God empowered Governor Wike to succeed where his predecessors failed.
Pro-Chancellor of the Rivers State University, Justice Iche Ndu (rtd) commended Governor Wike for his commitment to deliver key projects in the Rivers State University.
Aside the massive infrastructural regeneration of the Rivers State University, Governor Wike has intervened massively in the secondary education sub-sector .
The Third Year Anniversary Celebration of the Wike administration witnessed the completion and reintroduction of boarding education across the state.
The pilot schools for the reintroduction of boarding education are spread across the three senatorial districts of the state.
Government Girls Secondary School, Rumuokwuta was rebuilt from the scratch.  New structures added and new hostels built.  The school was fenced anew, modern laboratories, offices and electronic library developed.
 The school which was established in 1972 was allowed to decay beyond measures by previous administrations.
All the structures in the school were dilapidated, before  the Wike administration demolished them and built new structures
Paul Awkright, High Commissioner of Britain to Nigeria , who commissioned the project, commended  Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike for investing in girl-child education, noting that no country can develop if it fails to educate her girls.
He said: “There is no reason why we should neglect half of our population who can help ensure the prosperity of the country. That is why education is important.  That is why girl child-education is important.  Without girl-child education, this country cannot thrive”.
While thanking the people of Rivers State for their warm reception, he said he is genuinely pleased to be in the state which is the heart of the Niger Delta Region.
Birabi Memorial Grammar School, Bori is one of the schools revived by Governor Wike in Rivers South-East Senatorial District.  The school now has new hostels, modern classrooms, auditorium, laboratories, libraries and information and communication technology facilities.
At the time Governor Wike inherited the institution, it was at an time low, with no seats for students , while majority of the classrooms had collapsed.
Son of Paul Birabi, the founder of the school, Senator Bennett Birabi commended Governor Wike for transforming the school. He  said though he didn’t  support the Rivers State Governor during the 2015 election , Governor Wike fulfilled his promise to the Ogoni people.
Sokoto State Governor, Aminu Tambuwal who commissioned the project lauded Governor Wike for reviving the institution.
Sports  Prefect of Birabi Memorial Grammar School in 1973, Chief Godwin Nwiko said all old students of the school are happy with the Rivers State Governor for transforming their school .
Speaking during the commissioning ceremony of Birabi Memorial Grammar School , Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike stated that his administration resolved to intervene  in the remodelling and reconstruction of Birabi Memorial Grammar School, Bori because it is a flagship school in Ogoniland.
He said: “Most people forget easily where we are coming from. This school was completely  damaged and all the facilities degraded. I pledged to the Ogoni people during our campaigns that I will reconstruct this school and make it a boarding facility.  Today, we have achieved that goal. “.
He said that the Amaechi administration in the spirit of demolition, demolished several schools without rebuilding them. He said that the failed Amaechi  administration planned to demolish Birabi Memorial Grammar School, Bori, but was resisted  by Ogoni leaders.
“We have rebuilt several of the schools demolished and abandoned by the Amaechi administration.  Who will not want to study in a beautiful environment like this?   We keep our promises and we don’t give excuses “, he said.
Nyemoni Grammar School, Abonnema was revived in Rivers West Senatorial District.  The school was closed down by the Amaechi administration for eight years.  Governor Wike constructed two new hostels , while laboratories and libraries were built and equipped.
Former Acting National Chairman of PDP, Senator Ahmed Makarfi said everything is being done to distract Governor Wike, but he has remained focused, delivering key projects across the state.
“The most targeted politician in Nigeria today is Governor Wike. Everything is being done to distract you, but you must keep on working “, Senator Makarfi said.
He said Governor Wike has raised the bar in the delivery of projects and programmes, noting  that others will need a rocket to reach Governor Wike’s level .
At Abonnema, Governor Wike said that the revival and total re-equipping of the school was in line with his promise to the Abonnema people during the electioneering campaign.
“Communities that support Government will get more projects. Abonnema is one of the first towns where the people came out to support us wholeheartedly “, he said.
He announced the take over of the school from the mission and directed the Rivers State Senior Secondary School Board to commence the process for the posting of principal and teachers to the school.
Government Secondary School, Onne in Rivers East Senatorial District received the golden touch of the  Rivers State Governor.  Governor Wike transformed the school from its dilapidated form to a school with international facilities.
Prior to the intervention of Governor Wike, most parents withdrew  their children from the decayed school, leaving only 120 students.  He said after the reconstruction, the school now has a population of 820 students.
Former Jigawa State Governor, Dr Sule Lamido who commissioned the school stated that the investments of Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike in the educational sector are divine as they empower   future generations.
Alhaji Sule Lamido said the investments in the  Education Sector  will sustain the growth of the state.
“Education is divine as it helps  to build future generations.  It is on this score that I commend the Rivers State Governor for investing in  the reconstruction of this mega school”, he said.
Speaking on the reconstructed Government Secondary School, Onne, Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike said that his administration is committed to the provision of the right teaching and learning environment across the state.
He directed the immediate construction of boys and girls hostels in the school as part of the state government’s introduction of boarding education across the state.
The new reality of education in Rivers State is that of development, revival and  empowerment of the people.  This reality is premised on profound improvements which have replaced the cosmetic actions of the immediate past failed Amaechi administration . In all senatorial districts, the people are living witnesses that the Wike administration has advanced the education.

AmarSim Associations Development Consultants

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