Worried by the dearth of manpower in the construction and fabrication industry in the country, Cross River State Government, in partnership with a United Kingdom-based firm, Schools Company, has concluded plans to set up a construction and fabrication academy.

Known as Royal Academy for Construction and Fabrication, the institution will be the first of its kind in Africa that will focus mainly on hi-tech and heavy industrial fabrications and constructions.

Speaking shortly after sealing the deal with the UK firm in Calabar, the state governor, Prof. Ben Ayade said: “The Royal Academy will be the first of its kind in Africa that will focus mainly on hi-tech and heavy industrial fabrications and constructions.”

He disclosed that apart from the academy, the state was also setting up a British-Canadian International School in Obudu as well as a teachers’ training institute to be sited in Obubra to compliment the upcoming schools.

“This is the major thing Cross Riverians have been waiting for because it is going to develop a new set of workforce that is skilful and intellectually equipped for the 21st century construction and fabrication.”

“By setting up this great institution, Cross River State is preparing a background that will create a new story and a new narrative for the new Africa that all will be proud of. In the next few years, the state shall be the leading light in construction.

“The Academy will be responsible for the design and construction of bridges and houses. Its first task is to open up a training centre in our proposed brand new city, Calasvegas, in Calabar and take in our recruits for the academy to begin to begin training exercise.

“It is sad that we have to continuously depend on foreign inputs to be able to have a modular refinery and that is why we feel that the setting up of this academy will deal with the issues of heavy industrial innovations and manufacturing to make Cross River the epicentre for manufacturing and construction in Africa.”

Earlier, leader of the team and Chief Executive Officer, CEO, Schools Company UK, Mr. Elias Achilleos, said that the concept and design of the proposed schools are fashioned after the United Kingdom’s schools standard bearing in mind the climatic condition of Nigeria and promised to put up the best training facilities in the state.

According to him, “this is a great project to the people of Nigeria and Calabar in particular and I sue for support from all the stakeholders for the successful implementation of these projects that will turn out the very best in construction and fabrication works for this country.

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