The Delta State Governor and the Chairman of the Advisory Committee of the Niger Delta Development Commission, NDDC, Emmanuel Uduaghan, has commissioned a 696-bed state-of-the art hostel built by the Commission and handed it over to the authorities of the University of Benin, UNIBEN.
The UNIBEN hostel project is one out of the 19 hostels built across the Niger Delta Region.
At the commissioning ceremony, Uduaghan said he was impressed with the efforts of the new board and management and assured them of the continued support of the governors of the nine Niger Delta states. The structure, he said, would improve the living condition of students in the university and take UNIBEN back to its days of glory.
He also counseled the students to shun cultism and other vices on campus and advised them to stay focused on doing well in academics to equip themselves for the challenges of life outside the university campus.
Access To Decent Accommodation
On his part, the NDDC Managing Director, Mr Bassey Dan-Abia, promised that the Commission would, in line with President Jonathan’s directive, consistently complete and deliver more projects for the benefit of the people of the Niger Delta region in the coming months and years
“Many more hostels will be handed over for the benefit of students in universities across the region,” Mr Dan-Abia said.
He told the crowd that NDDC was determined to complement the infrastructural development efforts of other organs of the Federal Government and the organised private sector in the nation’s education sub-sector, so as to ease the over-crowding of students and increase access to decent accommodation, as he gave a comprehensive account of the commissions projects in the education sector.
The Pro-Chancellor of UNIBEN, Senator Effiong Wilson Bob, said that the NDDC had succeeded in fulfilling its mandate in intervening in the education sector.
The new hostel built by the commission is a world class facility that has helped in lifting the image of UNIBEN. He appealed to the commission to assist the university to renovate its old hostels to bring them somewhere close to the standard of the new hostel.
The prototype hostel, one out of the 19 university hostel projects embarked upon across the nine states of the Niger Delta, is the third to be commissioned by the NDDC and the second by this present board. The first being the NDDC prototype hostel at the Federal University of Technology (FUTO), Owerri, which was commissioned on February 5, 2014.
The NDDC has so provided 7 hostels about 10% of the 8,283 rooms already existing. The commission had contributed immensely to easing the over-crowding of hostels witnessed by students of the university and increased their access to decent accommodation within the campuses across the Niger Delta Region.
He said that in addition to infrastructural development, the NDDC had in recent times provided science equipment to numerous secondary schools; retrained 500 science teachers and 225 principals and vice principals, for capacity enhancement in schools’ management and administration. “The NDDC also provided 3,600 sets of computers to all the polytechnics in the region; awarded 610 overseas scholarships for Masters Degrees and PHD programmes in engineering and sciences, including medicine, in the best universities across the world. This is to enable them to participate effectively in the oil and gas sub-sector of the Nigerian economy,” the MD said.