All is set for the construction of a befitting model Basic Education school in Ata Obio Akpa community, Oruk Anam Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State, sponsored by the Universal Basic Education Commission with the support of Akwa Ibom State Government.
The Commissioner of Education, Prof Nse Essien made the disclosure during the handing and taking over formalities held at the site.
Prof Essien who charged the community to receive the project as a gift and ensure a peaceful atmosphere throughout the course of the work, stressed that the best thing someone can offer is education.
In his words, the commissioner noted “I am here to receive the land on behalf of the State Government and handover to the Universal Basic Education Commission (UBEC) for the construction of a model school, with the assurances of the entire community that they will cooperation with UBEC till the completion of the project”.
While describing Ata Obio Akpa as a fortunate community in Akwa Ibom with all levels of education, where people will come from far and near to acquire knowledge, he advanced that the State is expecting a large turnout of qualified professionals, ready to man the available industries.
Earlier, setting the tone of the event, Chairman of the State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Prof Maria Ikorok, maintained that quality basic education can only be achieved with the cooperation of the community.
Prof Ikorok recalled that the current UBEC Secretary, Dr. Hamid Bobboyi, who came on board with the plan of transforming basic education in the country through the model school concept, had assured and fulfilled his promise that Akwa Ibom would enjoy such facility.
She lauded the personnel of UBEC for an effective collaboration with the State Government to provide basic education in the community, which comprises early childhood education, primary and junior secondary school.
The University Don, particularly extolled Governor, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, for positioning education on the front burner of his administration, as exemplified in the provision of science equipment, instructional materials, welfare of teachers, renovation and construction of infrastructure in the basic schools.
Prof Ikorok noted that considering the contributions of the people of Obio Akpa, Governor Udom magnanimously approved the location of the model school in the community. She therefore, urged the community not to disrupt the process, by making undue demands from the contractors, adding that sponsors of the project have mandated the relocation of the school in event of any hostility by the community.
The SUBEB Boss who applauded the Royal Fathers, Local Government Chairman and the entire community for their cooperation, advised that disciplined, indigenous and competent professionals be made to assist in the construction process.
In his speech, UBEC Official, Arc. Fidelis Michael, hinted that the team is in the State to kick start the project which is expected to last for one-year. He admonished the community to shun youth restiveness to ensure the success of the project.
The host Local Government Council Chairman, Atuekong Ubong Idiong, in his address, counselled the community to make good use of the opportunity provided by the government. He also solicited that the contractors should engage youths of the community in the construction work, as a way of empowering them.
Speeches by the Clan Head, Chief Christian Essien, Village Head, Okuku Samuel Essien and others also bordered on appreciation to the sponsors and commitment to cooperate with the contractors of the project.
High point of the event, was the taking over of the land from the community by the Commissioner of Education, Prof Nse Essien, on behalf of the State Government and handing over same to UBEC for the construction of a model school, and the presentation of a prototype of the model schools to the community.
Dignitaries who graced the occasion were Board Member 1, Hon. Bernard Duncan; Board Member 2, Bishop Ime Ekpe; Board Member 3, Hon Inibehe Etukudo; Permanent Secretary, SUBEB, Ezekiel Umoh; Directors, Mrs. Eme Etim and education stakeholders in the area.
Credit: Anietie Ammah