By Aniema Akpan
All is set for the construction of a benefitting model Basic Education school in Ata Obio Akpa community, Oruk Anam LGA, Akwa Ibom State, sponsored by the Universal Basic Education Commission with the support of Akwa Ibom State Government.
Honourable Commissioner of Education, Prof Nse Essien made the disclosure recently during the handing and taking over formalities held at the site.
Prof Essien who charged the community to receive the project as 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 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, Executive Chairman State Universal Basic Education Board, Prof Maria Ikorok maintained that quality basic education can only be achieved with the cooperation of the community.
Prof Ikorok recalled that the current Executive Secretary, UBEC, Dr. Hamid Bobboyi who came on board with the plan to transform basic education in the country through model school concept, assured Akwa Ibom would enjoy such facility and the promised has been fulfilled by the event.
She lauded the personnel of UBEC for 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. Therefore, she 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 assuring cooperation and peace to accomplish the project on mandate, advised for the choice of disciplined indigenous competent professionals to assist in the construction process.
In his speech, UBEC Official, Arc. Fidelis Michael, who hinted that the team is in the State to kick start the project which is expected to last for one-year interval, admonished the community to shun youth restiveness to ensure the success of the project.
Arc. Michael, expressed appreciation to the community for the impressive turnout to the event, saying “this indicate that you are friendly and are willing to cooperate for the overall success of the project. I urge you to maintain this peaceful disposition.
In his speech, Host Local Government Council Chairman, Atuekong Ubong Idiong, counselled the community to make good use of the opportunity provided by the government.
Atuekong Idiong who appealed to the youths for maximum cooperation, solicited that the contractors should engage youths of the community in the construction site, as a way of empowering them.
Speeches by the Clan Head, Chief Christian Essien, Village Head, Okuku Samuel Essien and others bordered on appreciation to the sponsors and commitment to cooperate with the contractors of the project.
The 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 Universal Basic Education Commission for the construction of a model school, and the presentation of a prototype model of the 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. Also, in attendance was Mrs. Eme Etim and other education stakeholders in the area.