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IMSG retakes Eastern Palm Varsity, designates it one of IMSU Campuses

…As Ihedioha awards scholarship to two indigenes with best WAEC results in 2019

In continuation of his recovery drive of all public assets surreptitiously cornered by former administration of Rochas Okorocha, the Rt. Hon. Emeka Ihedioha led Imo State Government has taken over the Eastern Palm University, Ogboko and converted it to a campus of the Imo State University, Owerri.

The government move is coming barely 48 hours after Business Hilights had published a report querying the sensibility in allotting 90 per cent share to a private venture in an enterprise wholly registered and funded by the Imo State Government (https://businesshilights.com.ng/can-imo-state-own-only-10-in-a-school-recognized-as-state-varsity-by-nuc/).

Business Hilights recalls that the 8th Imo Assembly, under the intimidating shadows of former governor had passed a law allotting a humongous 90 per cent equity shares to trustees of Rochas Foundation leaving paltry 10 per cent to Imo state government even securing approval of the university based on state government application.

Still on education which had remained the key industry of the state, the elated Imo State governor; Emeka Ihedioha on Wednesday, announced the award of full academic scholarship to study in any Nigerian university to the two best Nigerian students from the state in the 2019 West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).

The students are Stephany Chizobam Ugboaja and Favor Alozie. They both scored ‘A1’ in all subjects of their nine registered subjects in the 2019 WASSCE results.

They took the exams in different schools.

A senior aide to the governor, Izuchukwu Akwarandu, made the disclosure on Wednesday, saying “The plan of the Ihedioha’s government is to ensure that we give the best to our state and reward excellence and hard work.”

Chairman of the Committee on the Review of the newly-established Tertiary Institutions in Imo State, Prof. Jude Njoku, said at a press briefing in Owerri on Wednesday that the committee established a prima facie that the institution was established with state funds.

The committee further recommended that the Imo State University of Agriculture and Environmental Sciences, Aboh/Okpala and the University of Science and Technology, Umuna should remain campuses of Imo State University while Aboh/Okpala will be the campus for agriculture and veterinary medicine, and Umuna will be for engineering as earlier conceived. He added that a judicial commission of inquiry would be set up to determine the sources of funding and ownership structure of the university. He said that from the findings of the committee at the National Universities Commission (NUC), it was established that approval was given to EPU as the second University in Imo, 47th State University and 143 Nigerian universities.

In addition, Njoku revealed that it was discovered that the land was purchased and paid for by the state government. The committee also scrapped all polytechnics established towards the end of the Rochas Okorocha administration.

Though efforts to get an official response from Okorocha’s Rochas Foundation failed at press time, a source close to the Foundation, averred that “We are currently compiling and documenting every action of the current administration against the Foundation with a view of taking the needed action at the right time.”

According to him, the governor’s recognition will serve as a morale booster to Imo students to attain higher heights of achievements.