By Bukar Bolori
Borno State Governor, Prof. Babagana Zulum on Tuesday suspended the entire management of his alma mater, Ramat Polytechnic Maiduguri after seeing the school in alarming condition.
The governor, who obtained a National Diploma from the institution in 1988 before returning to direct its affair as a rector between 2011 and 2015, was shocked to see its workshops and laboratories were no longer functioning, during a surprise visit.
Zulum, who could not contain his anger, ordered the suspension of the management of the state-owned school for a period of six months.
The Governor visited the Polytechnic around 9:00am and found most of the laboratories out of use, with some covered by cobwebs and rodents roaming around due to neglect.
Zulum had gone to the school to assess all infrastructures and learning conditions, which he was dissatisfied with making him to thereafter, direct the State’s Commissioner of Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation, Dr. Babagana Mallumbe to take over the affairs of the school with immediate effect.
He said: “As far as I am concerned, this Polytechnic is dead. Nothing is working. The workshops are not in existence, the mechanical workshop is not working, the agricultural workshop is not working, likewise the entrepreneurship centre is not working. The School is facing myriads of problems, ranging from lack of funding and commitment. As former student of this polytechnic, a former rector, I have moral stakes in this polytechnic.
“Insha’Allah, I will not allow this polytechnic to rot during my era as Governor of Borno State. I will do everything possible within my reach to ensure functionality of this institution insha Allah.
“I have directed the Commissioner of Higher Education, Science, Technology and Innovation to take over the affairs for the next six months. The ministry is to ensure that all the workshops and the laboratories are put back to use as soon as possible. The entrepreneurship centre should immediately be put back to use as well.”
He narrated that: “When I was at the Polytechnic as rector, the entrepreneurship centre was producing nothing less than 10,000 to 20,000 school desks and chairs every month. We produced hospital beddings.”
Zulum subsequently held closed door meeting with top management of the Polytechnic, and directed the ministry of water resources to drill two deep aquifers borehole and carry out a complete water channel network within the polytechnic, which is coming after prior interventions he approved for Polytechnic in 2019, to reduce problems of water supply.
Meanwhile, while addressing thousands of students at the premises of the polytechnic, he gave assurance that payment of scholarships will commence soon.
He said: “The verification exercise have just been completed, I want to assure you that as soon as the detailed report is forwarded to me, we will pay your scholarship immediately.”
The Governor was also on Tuesday at the federal secretariat, where enrollment exercise of Batch C N-Power volunteers are been conducted.
On arrival, he addressed thousands of applicants gathered for the biometric enrollment that will enable them get monthly federal government stipends. He assured them of state government’s support despite N-Power been federal government programme.