By Ogar Monday; House of Assembly Correspondent Follow @ogar_monday
First term Assembly man, Mr. Hillary Bisong (PDP, Boki 1) has slammed the Cross River Ministry of Education over the state of the Library complex in Calabar, the state capital.
Mr. Bisong said the ministry’s approach towards fixing the complex was against the tenets of the state’s tourism drive and wondered why despite being blessed with two professors at the helm, the library was in tatters.
“The state has never had it well in terms of governance, as the State Governor and his Deputy are both professors but the current state of the Library is nothing to write home about. It’s not conducive and proper for our children to go and read,” Mr. Bisong said during the defense of the NGN29 billion budget proposed by the ministry on Monday.
He queried the rationale behind the proposal to build 3 new schools; the British Institute, the Canadian Institute and the construction academy while the state library is in tatters and the Institute of Technology and Management, Ugep is being underutilized.
He averred that: “We cannot be budgeting 1 billion to build new schools while (an) edifice like the state library is gradually rotting away and the Ministry turns a blind eye.
“Cross River is a tourism state and the library is an eyesore to any visitor to the state. Honorable Commissioner, I think you should prioritize what is achievable and focusing on achieving them instead of planning on establishing new schools.”
And, the Commissioner for Education, Mr. Goddy Ettah affirmed Mr. Bisong’s statement that the library is a big building and a historical edifice considering its history.
He said the ministry will ensure the place gets a facelift as soon as possible.
The defense of the 2018 budget of the Cross River State government has been ongoing with the education ministry budgeting NGN530 million for ‘Expatriate Staff Upkeep‘ while NGN2.5 million was budgeted for teachers training.
The Governor, Senator Ben Ayade had on November 30, 2017 presented a NGN1.3 trillion budget of Kinetic Crystallization for the 2018 fiscal year.
Mixed reactions trailed the budget with Mr. Ayade explaining the rationale behind the budget weeks later while civil societies and pressure groups continuously criticize the non availability of the 2016 and 2017 budgets.
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