Worried by the waning culture of reading and research in the school system, ex-students of the University of Uyo (UNIUYO), Akwa Ibom State, have concluded plans to plough back into their alma-mata.
Towards this end, the former students under the aegis of the University of Uyo Alumni Association have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with development partners to set up a standard library for the institution.
The project initiated by the current Executive of the association led by Prof. Gabriel Umoh, is expected to cost N40m.
Under the terms of agreement, the project contractor, Wallnet Business Services Limited (WBS), would undertake the cost of erecting the facility and operate for 20 years before transferring it to the UNIUYO Alumni.
The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Enefiok Essien, who laid the foundation of the project, hailed the initiative, noting that it would go a long towards entrenching the culture of reading and research in the institution.
“This a very eventful event and it is quite commendable because reading makes a better man”, the professor of Commercial Law, noted.
Also, the President of UNIUYO Alumni, Umoh, a professor of Agricultural and Development Economics, said the idea followed series of consultations with members and friends of the association, adding that the project, when completed, would serve as a lasting legacy of the current Executive.
He thanked the University management, Board of Trustee (BoT) members of the association and other stakeholders for supporting the project.
The Chairman and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Wallnet Business Services, Engr. Obinna Emeribe, who undertook to construct the project under the Build Operate and Transfer (BOT) arrangement, said the facility would be completed in the next couple of months.
According to him, the facility that would be complete with printing and other business components, has the tendency of complementing teaching, learning and research modules in the University and called for synergy of purpose to ensure the delivery of the project in record time.
In the same, the BoT Chairman of the Alumni, Prof. Nkereuwem Udoakah, who was represented by the BoT Secretary, Hon. Usenobong Akpabio and other principal officers of the institution commended the association for the drive towards improving teaching and learning in their alma-mata.
According Akpabio, a former member of the State House of Assembly, the project was the fulfillment of the unity of purpose engendered by the coming together of the members.
“This is the fulfillment of our main purpose of coming together for the University to also experience development from former students of the institution”, he said, noting that the private\public partnership remains the major driver of growth and social development.
“The University will benefit maximally from what we are doing today”, he added.