The provost, Akwa Ibom State College of Education, Afaha Nsit, Prof Mathew Ekpo has expressed an impending danger of the institution losing its accreditation, as the citadel of learning is yet to access her 2019 approved budgeted provisions.
Prof. Ekpo made the worrisome disclosure when he appeared before House Committee on Appropriation and Finance Chaired by Rt. Hon. Uduak Ududoh during the ongoing 2nd quarter Budget Evaluation and Implementation exercise at the Assembly Complex.
“Mr. Chairman, you said the people that just left had 1% implementation, that was very good for them, what is happening to us is a more pathetic issue”. The Provost remarked!
He further stated that accessing budgeted funds for a fiscal year is a major prerequisite for implementing the institution’s Master-Plan, a criteria for earning and retaining accreditation.
The Provost while giving the breakdown of the institution’s activities within the period under review, said the institution had a budget size of N812m for 2019 fiscal year.
“The first thing we hard on our 2019 budget was Master-Plan of Akwa Ibom State College of Education which is needed at the accreditation as we are expecting another accreditation next year.
“We needed to plead with the supervising Ministry to allow us during last year’s accreditation exercise with the promise by the time they revisit, we will show the Master-Plan of the college, that was the First thing on the budget for 2019, We have not access 10k this year, and the fear is when they come in for another accreditation, we may lose our accreditation”. Says the Provost!
The provost went further to intimate the committee that since 1999, Akwa Ibom State College of Education has been in existence without a Master-Plan with other things.
Save the Only-Teachers-Training-Institution in A’Ibom State
He pleaded with the committee to use its good offices and ameliorate the pending danger threatening the existence of the Institution as the only Teachers-Training-Institution in Akwa Ibom State.
The Chairman of the Committee, Rt. Hon. Uduak Ududoh described the situation as being pathetic, bleeding for urgent intervention for securing accreditation for Akwa Ibom State teachers training Institute.
“If funds are not released and we lose accreditation, its will be a pathetic situation for the State”. Rt. Hon. Ududoh remarked!
The Chairman who is also representing Ikot Abasi/Eastern Obolo in the State House of Assembly Suggested putting the new Education Commissioner in the know for urgent intervention as a matter of necessity and the Provost obliged.
Ministry of Health
The State’s Commissioner for Health, Dr. Dominic Ukpong while presenting the Ministry’s 2nd quarter budget implementation progress decried meeting unqualified health care service givers, dilapidated health care and other unbecoming issues that surrounded the health care system in the State.
He hinted that health of the state is the life of the State and without it the State, it cannot work to the optimum expectations.
We met the State of Hospitals in the State in a very dilapidated State
The Commissioner disclosed that when he assumed office, Primary Health care system in the State was almost nil in existence as most of the facilities had no perimeter fences across the State and workers exposed to risks, without light and water, workers were deterred from night duties to avert the havoc of being raped and other vices.
He added that there has been a slight improvements in the regards.
Ibom Specialist Hospital was no way near completion
Dr Ukpong made it known to the Committee that the Ibom Specialist Hospital was not near its completion, “I wish to put the records straight that the Ibom Specialist Hospital was never completed”, The Commissioner hinted.
He disclosed before the Committee that the total sum of N14b is needed to complete the edifice, equip to standard and recruitment of qualified medical personnel to put to adequate use.
However, members of the Committee took turns and frowned at billions of public funds that have gone down the drain with regards to a referral hospital in the State by the immediate past administration and question its functionality if a whooping sum of N14b is further invested into the project.
On behalf of the Committee, the chairman described the state of health care system in the State as being worrisome and pathetic in the past years and commended Governor Udom Emmanuel for paying premium to social services in the State with health care services ranking top in his agenda for the common good of the State.
He called on the Health Commissioner to bring his wealth of experience in the sector to bare for an improved healthcare service delivery to Akwa Ibom people and their sojourners in the State.
Ministry of Science and Technology
Dr. Iniobong Essien, Commissioner for Science and Technology while briefing the committee on the progress of the Ministry in the 2nd quarter of the year, said that the sum of N25m has been released to the Ministry between the period of January to June 2019.
Presenting detail of how the released funds was spent, the commissioner said the Ministry has implemented the following projects: procurement of Computers (science Laboratories) for ten federal Constituencies across the State, Human resource capital development for science and technology among other projects.
The Chairman of the Committee categorically stated that the purpose of the evaluation exercise is to ascertain the level of budgetary implementation regarding Ministries, Departments and Agencies for an informed decision to be taken as 2020 budget is underway, avert proposing a Burgos budget size with minimal or no releases.
Members of the Committee present during the third day of the exercise were: Vice Chairman of the Committee, Rt. Hon. Effiong Bassey-member Oron/udung Uko, Hon. Asuquo Udo, member Ikono, Hon. Barr. Otobong Bob, member Nsit Ubium , parliamentary staff among others.