By Harris-Okon Emmanuel
THE students, staff and management of University of Uyo, UNIUYO, in Akwa Ibom State are in high spirits and they have many reasons to be excited. The acute water shortage being experienced in Uyo, the state capital, would not affect the institution, as the mini-water project which commenced in 2014, has come on stream.
Niger-Delta Voice learned that the project consists of 12-inch borehole, 135 cubic metre overhead tank and 150 horse power stand by generator to power it.
Federal Govt intervention
The project was undertaken by the Cross River Basin Development Authority, a subsidiary of the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, Abuja to serve the university community.
Speaking during the inauguration of the project in Uyo, Senior Special Assistant to the President on Legislative Matters, Senator Ita Enang, explained that the project was not sponsored by him, but embarked upon by the Federal Government’s agency under the Federal Ministry of Water Resources.
Ita, who represented President Muhammadu Buhari said: “I want to state it clearly that I do not take glory for what that does not belong to me. The project was not executed from my personal funds. I only facilitated the provision of the facility from the budget of the Federal Government through the Cross River Basin Development Authority, CRBDA under the Ministry of Water Resources.
Scheme to serve university
“And the President has asked me to come and commission the facility, see the extent of its completion, see where it could reach and what more could be done for the institution. He has mandated us to ensure that the presence of his administration is felt in all the nooks and crannies of the country, of which UNIUYO will not be an exception.
“The vision of the Buhari administration in its support and assistance to the University of Uyo and any other institution in the country, is to ensure that when the doors of education are open to the teeming youths, the prison doors are shut.
“For the reticulation of the water, we will work with Cross River Basin Development Authority to extend the facility beyond the estimated two kilometres.”
More projects underway
Senator Enang, however, promised that he would take up the uncompleted hostel at the main campus with the authorities of the interventionist agency, Niger-Delta Development Commission, NDDC; assuring funds were now available for the completion of the Law Library he facilitated in the university.
Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Enefiok Essien in his remark, thanked the Federal Government for the completion of the project which started in 2014, describing water as a source of life to all living things, adding that the university requires about N3 million to reticulate the water within the university environment.
Water is life
“For the university community, water is key as it is the bedrock of sanitation and other usage. The commissioning of the facility is timely and it would not have come at a better time than now. We promise that the facility will be put to good use and properly maintained,” he said.
Prof, Essien, however, called on well-meaning Nigerians and corporate bodies to toe the line of the President’s aide who facilitated the project to assist the institution in providing basic amenities and pledged that the project would be put to good use.
Chairman of the Governing Council, Prof. Austin Ajuwo also expressed joy at the commissioning of the project, saying that it would go a long way to address the water needs of the university at the permanent site even as he thanked the President’s aide for the gesture.
A representative of the Managing Director, CRBDA, Ukpong Umoren, said the water scheme would go a long way to solve the water problem in the institution, adding that the reticulation would be extended from the initial two kilometres to five kilometres so that it could cover the entire university.