Students’ solidarity rally and APC’s lonesome cry
On Thursday, January 10 2019, Akwa Ibom students went out enmasse to show solidarity, celebrate and endorse Governor Udom Emmanuel for his re-election as governor in appreciation for the huge investments he has made in the education sector.
Consequently, the APC in the state has been much troubled and unable to keep their calm and has in the last few days been demonstrating utter desperation, akin to a snake whose head has been cut off.
In one of her shameful antics, the de facto publicity secretary and titular state Chairman of the APC, signed a release wherein he stated that Governor Udom Emmanuel desecrated the office of the Governor by giving money to the students who paid him a visit at government house and further stated that education has suffered in the state under the Udom Emmanuel led adminstration. Obviously, the above claims by the APC are ludicrous and farcical, a clear revelation of the logical bankruptcy of the author and his organization.
Whereas, we must remind the APC, albeit regrettably, that issues of students quarreling over money is not new to our clime and political space, as condemnable as it may be. A stroll down memory lane will reveal that In 2011 just before the elections, people claiming to be students of Akwa Ibom state Polytechnic, Uyo City Polytechnic and college of Education, visited the former Governor (Godswill Akpabio)and his running mate(Nsima Ekere) at Government House. During that visit, the Duo gave 10 million Naira to the students and it ended in a free for all, resulting in the death of some students and the injury of others, not a few in numbers. In fact, vehicles belonging to Obong Nsima Ekere were pelted with stones, while the then Governor retreated to the lodge for cover. Sadly, at that time, the current Governorship Candidate of the APC who was then running as the deputy Governorship candidate to Governor Godswill Akpabio did not see giving money to students as desecration of the office. The current cry and description of Thursday’s scene as a desecration by the APC in the state is at best, the fairest example of hypocrisy.
On the claim that education at all levels has suffered under the Udom-led administration, This statement is not just fallacious but deeply mischievous and completely at variance with the obvious realities. Before 2015, The state polytechnic at Ikot Osurua could hardly boast of a department with full accreditation, but under the current administration, the institution has 32 courses with full accreditation status in addition to the personnel beef up and infrastructure development in the campus.
Akwa Ibom state university has had a huge facelift in terms of infrastructure, with the construction of state of the art lecture theaters,mass communication complex, complete with Radio, television and print facilities, management science building among others. As at 2015, only 11 courses had accreditation, but today, 38 courses spanning 7 faculties have been fully accredited. The Governor has increased the monthly subvention to Akwa Ibom state University by at least 25%, from what the last administration did.
The college of Education is not just having an infrastructure facelift, but engaging in apt personnel consolidation and academic enhancement.
The Governor Udom Emmanuel-led administration places a huge premium on education and these efforts are yielding amazing fruits. Students enrollment into our state owned tertiary institutions are doubling and the ranking of the schools are climbing the ladder with speed.
While we know that it is politically suicidal for the opposition APC to acknowledge the strides of Governor Udom Emmanuel, it is also morally reprehensible to deny the obvious. At best, silence is an option.
Comrade Ini Ememobong
State Publicity Secretary
People’s Democratic Party
Akwa Ibom state