SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OF UNIVERSITY OF CROSS RIVER STATE AND POOR FUNDING: OTU WILL MAKE A DIFFERENCE. 

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By Barr (Dr.) UGOJI NWABUEZE (ODENIGBO), Former Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Non-Indigene Affairs.

 

 

 

 

In 2002, the then, Governor, Mr Donald Duke thought it wise to prioritise critical areas of education with the view of addressing the rot, decay, collapse, and death of the sector.

 

Against this backdrop, an Education Summit was convoked by the State Government as a Think Tank to locate a viable and sustainable road map with more windows for rapid development. It was the thinking at the Summit to establish the Cross River University of Technology* which through appropriate legislation came into existence on the 1st of September, 2002.

 

The philosophy of the new University states that it will produce First Class World Graduates in core areas of social and pure sciences equipped with a limitless capacity to compete favourably with peers in a technology-driven age. In addition, it will breed core technocrats and quality intelligentsia that will fill the manpower needs of the Federal, State, and other government agencies.

 

More than 20 years after its establishment, the University has continued to blaze the trail in so many areas, moving from a specialised technology-based institution to a conventional university justifying the wisdom of the establishment.

 

Today, the University is listed in the Joint Admission and Matriculation Board ( JAMB ) as a State University offering core degree Courses in Social, Pure and Applied Sciences.

 

The University has commenced Post Graduate Programmes in vital core areas of need from Post Graduate Diplomas to Masters Degrees and Ph.D. In addition, through its Part-Time Programmes, it is offering opportunities for

workers and citizens at all levels to earn a degree that will change their status in life.

 

Today, the University is estimated to have produced over 150 Professors including First Class Graduates competent enough to stand shoulder to shoulder with their peers in the global academic community through their uncommon streaks and brilliance. Today, the University graduates are mobilised for National Youths Service Corps (NYSC) and are saturating the competitive Labor Market with a determination to make a difference in all spheres of endeavours.

 

So far it has been a bouquet of flowers and cheering successes for the university and the yearning need to sustain this loud able achievements and dreams of Founding Fathers and the need for the Proprietor to increase and sustain the funding of the University justify the vision of this article.

 

Over 20 years, the perennial problems of the University have been funding and appropriate payment of salaries for its academic and non-academic staff.

 

The State Government could not find justification to allow the University to run on a low subvention of One Hundred and Sixty Nine Million Naira (N169, 000,000,000) from inception for over 14 years before moving it a few years ago to a paltry sum of Two Hundred and Fifteen Million Naira (N215, 000,000,000).

 

The State Government is aware that staff enjoys financial increments, promotions, training, (Local and Abroad) and even offer more employments to meet with the growing students intakes across the four campuses.

 

This is against the back ground that sister Universities such as Akwa Ibom State since 8 years ago parades monthly subvention of over N500M, Ebonyi State N450M, Imo State N500M, Benue State N450M, Osun State N420M, just to mention a few. Ours is at the low peak of N215M.

 

The allegation is that since 2002 when the University commenced till date it has not built and completed one single project on any of the campus. But, it has over 20 projects bleeding and seeking attention for completion.

 

This is where the time changing action and performing Governor, Senator Prince Bassey Edet Otu will make the difference. Better days are here for the university and Otu will surely address all the debilitating problems.

 

As a Senator, he attracted the construction of the best Administrative block to the University and comparatively in the South-South adjudged the best. He will do more. We invite him to do a historic visit to the Calabar campus and as the Visitor to the university have a fair knowledge of the University.

 

Amawu Cletus Albert Amawu

I'm a Journalist, Host/Producer of The Verdict, your voice of conscience on FAD FM 93.1, Calabar, Public Affairs Commentator, Social Change Agent.

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