Relocation of Science Faculties: Group condemns protest against Gov Oborevwori

***Says institutions are own by govt, not ethnic group, blames masterminds

Philip Onome

The Urhobo Media Practitioners Advocacy Group (UMPAG), yesterday, condemned in its entirety a protest masterminded by some persons in Isoko nation following allegations that the state governor, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori planning to relocate faculties of Science and Technology to Orerokpe, headquarters of Okpe local government area of Delta state.

The women and youths from Ozoro, Isoko nation yesterday in their hundreds blocked the Ughelli/Asaba road protesting against the governor of Delta state, Rt. Hon. Sheriff Oborevwori on alleged plans to relocate faculties of Science and Technology to his home town, Orerokpe, headquarters of Okpe local government area of Delta state.

The group has said that institutions are owned and controlled by state government and not ethnic nationalities, stating that institutions are fixtures of development, and as such it is the prerogative of any state government to establish a University and also decides where its campus could be sited if need be.

In a press statement issued by the Chief Omafume Amurun and the Secretary, Mr. Onojeghen Okpare Theophilus on behalf of the group, expressed displeasure over the manner the women and the youths had gone about the protest with the intent to paint the state governor in bad light.

The statement had earlier emphasized that all institutions owned by government are run by government and not ethnic group wherever such institutions are sited, saying that no community had ever stood against Isoko nation when the state government relocated faculty of law and engineering to Oleh in Isoko nation.

The statement which reads in parts, “When faculties of law and engineering were moved from Delta State University, Abraka to Oleh in Isoko, how many protest was organised against the then governor, Chief James Ibori, when the then governor Ifeanyi Okowa relocated some faculties to Asaba, Anwai campus, now Osadebe University, did Abraka community protested, why now it is an issues that Isoko nation is protesting against Oborevwori.

“There is nobody who does not know how Ozoro or Oleh was before the institutions were brought to the area and today development has covered the entire Ozoro and Oleh and both have become economic centres of both local government, yet no protest of any sort from other local government against relocating faculties to Isoko nation..

“So what is the problem of Isoko nation protesting against the state government, if actually government has decided to move any of the faculty to any other part of the state to attract development and also to create jobs for the people of the area, or no area should develop apart from Isoko nation.

“In some parts of the country, particularly Enugu, institutions are their major source of revenue because it opens new areas for indigenes and strangers to develop and venture into other businesses in the area which today Oleh and Ozoro are enjoying, and yet Isoko nation don’t want other local government area to experience same development.

“We the Urhobo Media Practitioners and Advocay Group (UMPAG), after serious scrutiny, has seen the agitations of the Isoko nation as misnomer, inconsequential and personal interest over the proposed relocation of the two two science faculties and the decision of the Delta state government no doubt is in the right direction.”

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