Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has expressed government’s preparedness to offer scholarship to students of the University of Africa, Toru Orua, when it becomes functional by next year.
Governor Dickson announced this, when he received a high-powered delegation of educational experts led by Professor Steve Azaiki, one time Secretary to the State Government, in Government House, Yenagoa.
The Governor, who stressed the need to establish a preliminary school, said the gesture was to prepare scholars run degree programmes at the new University of Africa.
According to Governor Dickson, the University of Africa will be self-funding, while the government provides the basic infrastructures and it is expected to be run, in line with international standards.
Expressing the government’s intention to provide grant for the institution to run its programmes, he said students would be selected through a transparent and competitive process, with an equal number of boys and girls, who would be expected to pay fees such as accommodation.
Governor Dickson, who disabused the minds of Bayelsans over the issue of ownership of the University of Africa, said the educational facility is state government-owned and would create avenues for entrepreneurship to strive.
Canvassing for partnership in running critical faculties in the University of Africa, such as medicine and engineering, he said the government was reaching out to all the top-notch universities, across the globe for collaboration to produce excellent graduates.
Also speaking, a one-time Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Steve Azaiki, lauded the state government for setting up what he described, as a world-class university, noting that Governor Dickson’s zeal to revamping the educational sector was unprecedented.
In his contribution, one of the educational consultants, Prof. James Ogunleye, said part of the responsibility of the independent college of experts was to scrutinise grant applications from the European Union countries and make appropriate recommendations for the approval of such applications.
Commending the state government on the establishment of the University of Africa, Prof. Ogunleye, said self-sustainability was the trend in tertiary education with minimal government support, in terms of provision of facilities.
In his remarks, Prof. Gertrude Shotte underscored the need to establish a solid educational foundation and commended the state government for building a university that would reflect excellence.
On his part, Prof. Luc Dubois, said most students fail in their examinations, as they are deficient in studying techniques, adding that, they have the expertise to address the challenge.
•Photo shows Governor Dickson.