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Actualising The Bodo-Bonny Road

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Managing Director of the Nigeria Liq
uefied Natural Gas (NLNG), Babs
Omotowa raised an uncommon hope on the Bodo-Bonny Road recently when he said his company was prepared to contribute N60bn for the construction of the road.
According to Omotowa, if the Federal Government was willing to complete the road, NLNG will provide N60 billion which represents half of the contract sum. The Bodo-Bonny Road is a major Federal Road in Rivers State that successive governments lacked the political will to complete.
The Managing Director said at a hearing of the Senate Committee on Niger Delta Affairs in Abuja that the project, when completed, would help improve infrastructure in the Niger Delta. The road links five Local Government Areas; including Khana (Ogoni), Okrika, Eleme, Andoni and Bonny.
Omotowa said, “we said we are willing to offer 50 per cent on the road between Bodo to Bonny which has been outstanding since the 1970’s, and that contribution is N60 billion and we think that these are the kind of projects the NDDC can work with us.”
Omotowa, however, stated that the NLNG’s offer to provide 50 percent of the funding for the road would be activated, provided the partnership is accepted and matched by the Federal Government’s counterpart funding.
The Tide welcomes the offer, particularly against the backdrop that the Bodo-Bonny Road project has been one of the failed projects that underscore the long standing neglect of Rivers State in particular and the Niger Delta in general by successive Nigerian governments. Indeed, the importance of the road cannot be over-emphasised.
Apart from its importance to the enhancement of the economic base of the nation, the road will also connect the mainland Rivers State to a sizeable section of the riverine part of the State, in fact, one of the most difficult terrains in the Niger Delta. Here, the influence of the Atlantic Ocean is real.
It is, indeed, disturbing to note that, added to the perennial cries of the communities in that axis, is the accessibility burden on the foremost gas company in West Africa, NLNG, and its ancillary firms. This should have placed on the conscience of the nation an avoidable guilt.
While we commend the NLNG for the offer, we expect that the Federal Government will quickly accept it and work in concert with the company to finally actualise the construction of this all important road. This ancient city of Bonny and its environs need to be fully accessible. The Federal Government should accept this challenge and build the remaining 50 percent of the funding into the 2016 budget.
The Tide believes that the inclusion of the Federal Government’s quota of N60 billion in the budget and the exercise of the needed political will to ensure availability of fund for prompt execution of the project, can guarantee the realisation of the project during the life of the present administration.
If the present government at the federal level wants to break the jinx and actualise the promise for change, it must also start dealing with all other issues that can stand in the way of the realisation of the project.
In that wise, the Federal Government must ensure that initial land and compensation matters are perfected. Indeed, affected communities should be taken along, while the security needs of the project should be facilitated to avoid interferences of any kind.
It should be noted that the NLNG did not make the offer for fun, like the communities, the NLNG has its own share of stories on the near impossible condition of the route to their business site. NLNG must have come to terms with the fact that ‘if the road was not done, not only would the life of its staff and contractors continue to be threatened, their interest may also be at stake.
It is a fact that provision of the road will go a long way to avert the frequent loss of lives on the high sea, eliminate piracy and promote business in the area. Even huge is the tourist potential of the area that this can harness, while alleviating the sufferings of the Ibanis.
As earnings from gas become significant, it is only imperative that the Federal Government will rise to the occasion. Indeed, the government that is able to provide this road will go down in history as the one that conquered the odds and made the difference that mattered most.

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Education

JAMB Releases Cut-Off Marks For Universities, Polytechnics, Others

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The Joint Admissions and Matriculation Board (JAMB) has released the cut-off marks for universities, polytechnics and other institutions for the recently concluded 2022 University, Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME) Below are the cut-off marks.
Federal Universities
Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University, Bauchi (ATBU) 180
Ahmadu Bello University, (ABU) Zaria 180
Bayero University, Kano (BUK)- 180
Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun (FUPRE) 180
Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA) 180
Federal University of Technology, Minna (FUTMinna) 180
Federal University of Technology, Owerri (FUTO) 180
Federal University, Dutse, Jigawa State (FUD) 180
Federal University, Dutsin-Ma, Katsina (FUDutsinma) 180
Federal University, Kashere, Gombe State (FUKashere) 180
Federal University, Lafia, Nasarawa State (FULafia)- 180
Federal University, Lokoja, Kogi State (FULokoja) 180
Federal University, Ndufu-Alike, Ebonyi State (FUNAI)- 180
Federal University, Otuoke, Bayelsa (FUOtuoke) 180
Federal University, Oye-Ekiti, Ekiti State (FUOYE)- 180
Federal University, Wukari, Taraba State (FUWukari)- 180
Michael Okpara Uni. of Agric., Umudike (MOUAU)- 180
Modibbo Adama University of Technology, Yola (MAUTECH, formerly FUTYOLA) 180
National Open University of Nigeria, Lagos (NOUN) N/A 180
Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Kaduna 180 Nnamdi Azikiwe University, Awka (UNIZIK) 180
Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife 200
Police Academy Wudil 180
University of Abuja (UNIABUJA), Gwagwalada 180
Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (FUNAAB) 200
Federal University of Agriculture, Makurdi (FUAM) 180
University of Benin (UNIBEN) 200
University of Calabar (UNICAL) 180
University of Ibadan (UI) 200
University of Ilorin (UNILORIN) 180
University of Jos (UNIJOS) 180
University of Lagos (UNILAG) 200
University of Maiduguri (UNIMAID) 180
University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) 180
University of Port-Harcourt (UNIPORT) 180
University of Uyo (UNIUYO) 180
Usumanu Danfodiyo University Sokoto (UDUSOK) 180
State Universities
Abia State University, Uturu (ABSU) 180
Adamawa State University Mubi (ADSU) 180
Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba (AAUA) 180
Akwa Ibom State University of Technology, Uyo (AKUTECH) 180
Ambrose Alli University (AAU), Ekpoma 180
Anambra State University of Science & Technology, Uli 180
Bauchi State University, Gadau (BASUG) 180
Benue State University, Makurdi (BSUM) 180,
Medicine 200 Cross River State University of Science & Technology, Calabar (CRUTECH)- 180.
Federal Polytechnic, Bida 150.
Federal Polytechnic, Damaturu N/A.

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Education

Groups Educate Students On Human Trafficking, Child Labour

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To curtail increased cases of trafficking, child labour, prostitution, forced marriages, and drug peddling in the society, a non-governmental organisation, Children Emergency Relief Foundation (CERF) recently held sensitisation programme for secondary school students.
Executive Director, CERF and convener, Mrs. Abosede Oyeleye, said the foundation gives hope and transform lives of vulnerable and indigent youths in the society.
Oyeleye, at the event themed: “Human Trafficking and Child Abuse,” held at Ikorodu council secretariat Hall Lagos, said the foundation has supported more than 10,000 children with various projects over the years, promoting healthier and safer communities through regular community awareness programmes.
Some of the schools present include Christ Army Academy Ikorodu, Living Legacy Schools, Jehovah Jireh Schools, Homat College and Edfan College, Ikorodu.
Zonal commander, National Agency for the Prohibition of Trafficking in Persons (NAPTIP), Mrs. Agboko Modupe, said NAPTIP is fully committed to the prevention of all forms of human degradation and exploitation through coordinated use of crime prevention and law enforcement resources to stamp out human trafficking, liberate and uplift the vulnerable, especially women and children.
Modupe, who is NAPTIP’s Assistant Director of Intelligence [NADI], said they ensure rehabilitation and effective reintegration of the vulnerable ones into the society.
She appealed to students, teachers and stakeholders to be mindful of people who speak ill of the country, to lure them abroad.

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Varsity Students Lament As ASUU Strike Continues

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Some students of Nigerian public universities have expressed frustration over the lingering strike by the Academic Staff Union of Universities (ASUU).
In an interview with newsmen in Port Harcourt last Friday, these students are appealing to Federal Government (FG) to at least meet 50 per cent of ASUU demands so as to put an end to the incessant strikes.
Greatness Nnamdi-Ikpo, a third year student of the University of Port Harcourt, who is studying gas engineering, said that the ongoing strike was impacting negatively on the future plans of Nigerian students.
He said although he enrolled for a five-year programme in 2017, he was still in the first semester of the third year because of ASUU constant strike and the outbreak of COVID-19 pandemic in the country.
“My mates who left Nigeria to study abroad have graduated, some are in their final year and it seems those of us in Nigeria are forgotten.
“You don’t expect students who spent most of their time on strike and who also studied without properly equipped laboratories to come out with good grades or become experts in their fields.
“I am appealing to the Federal Government to bring back hope to Nigerian youths by putting in some efforts to meet some of the demands of ASUU, at least 50 per cent and this will also make the lecturers not to depend on students for their upkeep.
“I also plead with the government to employ young graduates to teach new technologies and innovations in our universities,” Nnamdi-Ikpo said.
Similarly, Ms Gift Nwafor, a student of the University of Calabar, who is studying education psychology, stated that the ongoing strike had caused students lots of harm than good as such she feels frustrated, adding that the strike action was leading some students into crime.
“Honestly, I am very sad and frustrated. My two siblings and I have been at home since February 14, 2022 and our rent for this year would soon expire without being in school.
“My greatest fear is that some of us have gone into crimes. They are into theft, raping and consumption of hard drugs, among others.
“I am appealing to the Federal Government and ASUU to consider our future and call off the strike so that we can go back to school,” Nwafor said.
Enugu Govt License To Establish University Of Medical Sciences
The National Universities Commission, NUC, has granted license to Enugu State Government, recognising the establishment of the State University of Medical and Applied Sciences, SUMAS, Igbo-Eno, Enugu State.
The license, issued to Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State, at NUC headquarters, Abuja, yesterday, was sequel to the enactment of the State University of Medical and Applied Sciences, SUMAS, Law, Igbo-Eno, Enugu State, on April 13, 2022.
Presenting the license, the Executive Secretary, NUC, Prof. Abubakar Adamu Rasheed, congratulated Gov. Ugwuanyi and the people of the state “on the establishment of the State University of Medical and Applied Sciences to be located in Igbo-Eno of Enugu State”.
The Law establishing SUMAS was presented to NUC by Enugu State government alongside the Academic brief and Master Plan of the new university.
The License recognized SUMAS as the second Enugu State owned University.
With the final stage of granting the license, Enugu State will now have a brand new, full-fledged, State-owned University of Medical and Applied Sciences (SUMAS), Igbo-Eno, Enugu State.
SUMAS, Igbo-Eno has become the 59th State University in Nigeria. Enugu State with two state-owned universities has now joined the league of states with more than one state university.
Reacting, the Deputy Chief of Staff, Government House, Enugu, Prof. Malachy Okwueze, who witnessed the presentation of the license to Gov. Ugwuanyi at the NUC headquarters, Abuja, said that “We can’t thank Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi of Enugu State enough for achieving this goal of providing the platform for increased access to quality university education for our teeming youths who struggle year after year to gain admission into the university without fulfilling their desires and  dreams for university education”.
According to him “This is especially so for professional courses such as medicine.”
U.S Pledges To Boost Cultural Preservation, Promote Learning Among Nigerian Students
The United States government has pledged to support initiatives that promote learning and provide students with opportunity to share ideas in an engaging environment and promote cultural preservation efforts.
Acting U.S. Consul General, James Suor, said modern educational space would stimulate curiosity in the minds of children, support learning, facilitate reflection and promote common ideals between United States and Nigeria.

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