An acclaimed academic, philosopher and former deputy governorship candidate in the State, Prof. Protus Nathan Uzorma, has taken a swipe at Governor Rochas Okorocha for conspiring with the Acho Ihim led Imo State Legislature to appropriate the Eastern Palm University that was from all indications built with Imo state funds, in the guise of Private Public Partnership (PPP).
The erudite scholar and public affairs commentator disclosed this, in a release he issued, in reaction to a front page story in the Community Watchdog Newspaper edition of Friday 25th May, 2018, captioned “Eastern Palm University: At last; Imo Assembly cedes majority share to Okorocha, state gets 10%”.
According to him, there is nothing like private, public, partnership in the ownership of universities in Nigeria because the National University Commission (NUC), recognizes and makes provision for only three categories of universities, namely, private, state and federal. “It is on record that, by the act that established? Universities in Nigeria, there is no provision for public, private, partnership in the ownership of universities. The act is very clear and was designed to ensure that universities are not primarily established for money making, but as centers for excellence”.
He wondered why members of the state legislature and Governor Rochas Okorocha would continually delight in taking actions and implementing programmes and policies, that impact negatively on Imolites, aggravate their already pitiable plight by subjecting them to lack and penury.
He challenged the Governor to let Imo people know the so-called partners, “how much they invested and the mode and terms of investment of the majority shareholder, with bank statements, stating the source of funding”.
The erudite scholar, known for his incisive columnists in national and local newspapers, commended Imo people for remaining calm, peaceful and patriotic despite provocative actions and utterances of the state governor and his agents and urged them not to misconstrue the people’s patriotism for weakness or cowardice. “I advise Governor Okorocha to stop compounding issues by thinking that Imolites lack the capacity to ask questions about how their collective resources were looted, leading to non-payment of pensions, salary, construction of substandard projects etc, as any attempt to further run the state aground will certainly be regretted by the Governor and his praise singers”.
It will be recalled that the Imo state House of Assembly, last week ceded majority share of Eastern Palm University to governor Okorocha and while the state was left with just 10% in a controversial PPP arrangement.