In fulfilment of the promise of Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Ezenwo Wike to continue to upgrade and expand educational infrastructures in the State, the Rivers State Government has announced the release of N16.6 billion for the upgrade of faculties at the Rivers State University.
The Rivers State Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulnus Nsirim who made this known at a joint media briefing on Wednesday (10/02/2021), in Port Harcourt disclosed that out of the amount, N9 billion will be take-off grant for the three new campuses of the Rivers State University at Ahoada, Emohua and Etche Local Government areas of the State.
Flanked by the State Commissioners for Health and Education, Professors Princewill Chike and Kaniye Ebeku respectively, Pastor Nsirim explained that each of the three campuses has N3 billion to cater for faculty building, hostels, offices, libraries, Auditorium, lecture halls and other relevant requirements that will make the campuses function effectively.
He also disclosed that the government has released N7.6 billion for University’s College of Medical Sciences to establish the Faculties of Basic Medical Sciences, Clinical Sciences and Pathology building.
“This approval will properly position the College to fully commence the programme for Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery (MBBS). It will also give the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital (RSUTH) the required facilities to strengthen accredited departments and departments that are due for accreditation,” he said.
Nsirim further disclosed that the State Government has also established a Scholarship scheme for indigenes of the State studying at the Pamo University of Medical Sciences because the school is also providing Rivers children and other Nigerians access to medical education.
He noted that approval was indeed a landmark development in the history of the institution which has maintained one campus since its establishment in October 1980, adding that with the establishment of the three new campuses, the communities where they are sited will be opened up for consequential development and economic activities. “This is in addition to creating employment that will reduce the rate of unemployment in the State,” he said.
He recalled Nigeria’s distance from the recommendations of the World Health Organisation (WHO) on the required number of medical personnel to cater efficiently for its teeming population as the ratio of doctor to patient ratio is 1:2753 which translate to 36.6 medical doctor per 100,000 persons, affirming that the State Government under the visionary leadership of Governor Wike as a responsive government is determined to contribute to reducing the gap, thus the massive investment in the training of doctors.
Giving further details, the state Commissioner for Health, Professor Princewill Chike explained that the College of Medicine has been housing the basic medical Sciences with departments of physiology, anatomy, biochemistry and other basic courses.
He said the release of the fund will make accreditation of certain departments easy while those already accredited will be strengthened as personnel have been recruited, adding that the vision of Governor Wike to have a full-flegded medical school will come alive and the benefit to Rivers people and Nigerians at large will be seen clearly.
Also speaking, the State Commissioner for Education, Professor Kaniye Ebeku who described the event as a glorious one in the history of the State education sector, recounted the huge benefits the investment will attract to the State saying that the release of the fund is a confirmation that Governor Wike was not playing politics when he announced the establishment of the three campuses in outside the state capital.