The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, has handed over three rehabilitated internal roads in the Federal University of Technology Owerri (FUTO) to the authorities of the institution.
While handing over the projects, Fashola expressed delight that the nation’s infrastructure gap was being gradually bridged.
According to a statement signed by the Director (press) of the ministry, Attari Monday Hope, the minister, who was represented by the Federal Controller of Works, Imo State, Engr. Anthony Animaku, during the handing over ceremony, expressed joy that the roads were now completed and ready for formal handover to the institution.
He said the purpose was to enhance the quality of education in the tertiary institutions in Nigeria.
Buttressing the importance of infrastructural development in educational institutions, the minister declared: “The gap of our infrastructure needs is steadily being bridged by a gradual process of repair, renewal and construction on major highways and it has reached schools”, adding that the quality of education would be impacted by the quality of infrastructure and the learning environments.
Underscoring the positive impact of the projects, the minister said anyone in doubt should simply “listen to some of the feedbacks from students where this type of infrastructure has taken place”, adding, “The interventions in the various tertiary institutions will have a critical contribution to support education in the country.
“Currently, there are a number of internal road interventions across tertiary institutions in Nigeria, and the students are saying that their reluctance to attend classes because of the bad roads, has been replaced by an enthusiasm to do so, now that the roads are better”, he said.
Pointing out that the project was an investment in education although a civil Works project, Fashola declared that during the construction, people were employed in the process, contributing to the job creation initiatives of the government.
“It is hoped that the school will now ensure that this asset is used properly and not abused”, he said
The minister, who promised that government would continue to intervene in education, explained further that the intervention by Federal Government would improve the ambience and environment of Federal Tertiary institutions to enhance academic activities.
The roads, which are among the 18 completed out of Federal Government’s 43 road intervention projects in tertiary institutions across the country, include the Health Centre, Hostel and Smat Roads. Awarded in 2018 and completed the same year, work done on the roads includes construction and asphalting of Health Centre and Hostel Roads and rehabilitation of Smat Road.
Responding, the Vice Chancellor of the institution, Professor Francis Chukwuemeka Eze, commended the Federal Government for choosing Federal University of Technology, Owerri as one of the beneficiaries of its laudable intervention.