By Chioma Onuegbu
MBIABONG—THE people of Mbiabong, Ikot Akpan community, Uyo Local Government Area, Akwa Ibom State, teachers and pupils of the Special Education Centre in the town, are thrilled by the six classroom blocks with conveniences and library built for the Centre by the Nigerian Breweries/Felix Ohiwerei Education Trust Fund for the Centre.
Community leaders, who spoke at the inauguration of the project, weekend, said the new edifice would be a great relief to the school considering that a lack of accommodation has remained its major challenge since inception.
General Secretary of Mbiabong, Edet Edem, said: ‘This new building is going to be a very big relief to this school because it lacked classroom blocks. The facilities even became over stretched since few years ago when normal students started to attend the school. We were told that Nigerian Breweries decided to construct the classroom blocks and library because a teacher in the school emerged overall winner in a school competition the company organized for school teachers called Maltina Teacher of the Year.
“We in this community thank God in a very special way for passing through that young teacher, Imoh Essien, to bless children with special needs in this school. We thank Nigerian Breweries for this gesture and also appeal to them not to forget this school in their education programmes.”
The youth leader, Henry Asuquo disclosed to NDV that for the 18 years that the centre was located in their community, government only built dormitories and additional classrooms which were still inadequate, adding, “So I am very excited about what is happening here today. We always appreciate every good development that comes here and this is one of them.”
Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Nigerian Breweries Plc. Mr. Johan Doyer who was represented by the Corporate Affairs Adviser, Mr. Kufre Ekanem, said the initiative was born out of the company’s desire to play a more active role in the development of the education sector of the country.
He disclosed that through the initiative, the company has built about 300 classrooms and 30 libraries, equipped with furniture and books in primary and secondary schools at various communities in the country.
Governor Udom Emmanuel represented by the Commissioner for Education, Pastor Paul Udofia, commended Nigerian Breweries for complementing government efforts in providing physical infrastructure for schools and called on other corporate organizations to emulate the gestures.
“Government alone cannot fund education. And we urge the village head and youth leader of this community to make sure that these facilities are not destroyed. We have in recent times received reports of vandalism and theft of facilities in this premises,” he said.