By Jimitota Onoyume
PORT HARCOURTâ€”FOR the University of Petroleum, Effurun, Delta State, to rise to contemporary challenges in the educational sector, the Federal Government has been urged to effectively fund the institution.
Making the appeal in Port Harcourt, Chairman of the South-South Parliamentary Caucus in the Federal House of Representatives, Andrew Uchendu, said it was sad that no provision was made for the institution in this yearâ€™s budget, while N14. 6 billion was earmarked in the budget for the Petroleum College, Kaduna.
Continuing, he said the caucus visited the institution recently and wasÂ dissatisfied with the level of government attention on the school.
â€œI led my members to PTI and the University of PetroleumÂ in Delta State.Â While the Petroleum College, Kaduna, has N14.6 billion in 2009 budget, the university has no allocation at all in 2009 budget.
â€œAlso, the university was established in 2007 and by 2008, the Education Trust Fund and the PTDF were supposed to release N500 million take-off grant for it to start.
â€œAs I speak with you, ETF has released its own part but the PTDF is yet to release its part of the take off grant to the university.
â€œWhat I advocate is that if the relevant authorities have decided that the university should play the role of educating our people, then they should fund it like they are doing to other institutions. We are not against the Petroleum Institute, Kaduna, all we are saying is fund the universityâ€
Uchendu, who also lamented the deplorable state of the East-West road which at the moment is causing motorists and travellers unbearable pain, wondered why the Federal Road Maintenance Agency left the road to degenerate to that extent.
The Lawmaker blamed neglects of this magnitude for the agitation and restiveness in the region.
He called on those in charge of road maintenance to try to ease the burden of travelers on that road by making sure repair work began immediately.