Vice Presidential Candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Mr. Peter Obi, has assured that education would be accorded the priority it deserves if he and the party’s Presidential Candidate, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, are voted into office in the forthcoming presidential election. Obi, who gave the assurance on Tuesday during a meeting with PDP support groups in Anambra State at Onitsha, said it was based on his numerous discussions with Atiku and Atiku’s Action Plan, which gives education a place of pride.
Obi frowned on the continued strike in the country’s universities, which he described as an “aberration”. He said that the inability of meeting of minds on the issue was either the sign that the government was not sincere or that government did not understand the import of education to national development.
Recalling what he did in Anambra State Obi said: “As the Governor of Anambra State, we accorded education the priority it deserves. When I assumed office, Anambra State was number 26th in national Examination. Because I considered it unacceptable, we set out to work such that progressively, until I left, we became No. 1.”
Obi said that his support cut across primary, secondary and tertiary educational intuitions. “For Example,” he continued, “we started the development of the Chukwuemeka Odumegwu-Ojukwu University at Igbariam. We fenced it, tarred the complex, and provided over 10 solid buildings. The College of Agriculture at Mgbakwu had one building when I became Governor; by the time I left, I provided them with over 15. Shortly before I left, I provided N5 billion cash to the State University for continued infrastructure development. We also assisted other privately and Federal Government owned institutions of higher learning on the philosophy that they serve Nigerians and not foreigners.”
On how he did it in Anambra State, Obi said that it was through massive support to the improvement of education infrastructure in the state. He said that his administration provided generators to schools in the state, because of the poor state of power – which he assured the Atiku Government would tackle with the urgency it deserved. He also said that his administration provided two buses to each of the schools in the state, including public and private schools, provided internet connectivity, computers, boreholes, sporting equipment and sick bays to the schools in the state.