<<< By Tahav Agerzua >>>
The Benue State Government has concluded arrangements to invest N7.6 billion into primary school education in the state.
State Governor, Samuel Ortom, made the disclosure today at the thanksgiving mass and launching for the building of St. John’s Catholic, Church, Mbazemba, near Adaka, a suburb of Makurdi.
The event was organized by the Majority Leader of the Benue State House of Assembly, Chief Benjamin Adanyi.
Governor Ortom disclosed that the state would pay a counterpart funding of N3.8 billion from the N5.5 billion loan it accessed last week to secure an equal amount from the Universal Basic Education Board, UBEC, adding that with the investment the primary schools in the state would change for the better.
He promised to construct an earth dam in Adaka and several communities in the state where boreholes have failed saying the dams would also enhance all year round farming even as he would liaise with Makurdi local government for the establishment of a clinic in the area.
The Governor urged the people of the state to serve God genuinely so that they could obtain help from him in these challenging times instead of incurring his wrath for sinful conduct.
He said the drop in the federal allocation to the state to an average of N2 billion a month for each of the two tiers has made it impossible to pay the current monthly wage bill of N4.2 billion at the state and N3.5 billion at the local government level.
According to him, an agreement has been reached with labour unions to merge allocations of two months to be able to pay one until the situation improved as efforts are also being made to boost internally generated revenue.
Chairman of the occasion, Senator George Akume, represented by his wife, Chief Mrs Regina Akume, appealed to Christians to make thanksgiving a daily affair adding that she and her husband have forgiven those circulating the rumours that he was dead.
Organizer of the occasion, Chief Adanyi stated that he organized the thanksgiving in obedience to scripture which enjoined Christians to always give thanks to God.
He also listed what he described as God’s mercy which he said enabled him to acquire education, the tenacity to hold on when he lost election several times, as well as his subsequent victories at the polls and eventual elevation to the position of Majority Leader.
Guest speaker at the occasion and Secretary to the State Government, Mr. Targema Takema, described Chief Adanyi as a brilliant, courageous and persistent leader of his people.
In his homily, Very Reverend Father Theophilus Hwande, enjoined Christians not to wait for God to compel them to give Him thanks through tragic situations.
He requested the provision of educational and health facilities as well as water to the Adaka community.