May 20, 2024

… NCAM’s autonomy will boost FG’s agricultural revival, food security

Borno State Governor, Babagana Umara Zulum, has pleaded with President Bola Ahmed Tinubu to reconsider the decision of merging the Army University, Biu, with the Nigerian Defence Academy (NDA), Kaduna.

President Tinubu approved the implementation of the Oronsaye report, which was made public after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting held on Monday, 26 February 2024.

The Oronsaye report recommended, among other things, the merger of several government agencies and parastatals, including the Nigerian Army University, Biu which is to be merged with the NDA Kaduna.

Governor Zulum was reacting to a question by journalists in Maiduguri on Thursday.

He said, “Let me begin by commending the Federal Government for this great initiative because this effort is geared towards reducing our spending; it is an excellent initiative. However, I want to appeal to the President on two things. One, on the merger of the Army University, Biu, with the Nigerian Defence Academy. Borno State has been facing a serious crisis for the last 15 years and as a result of this, many of our children could not have access to education. Therefore, this University is crucial to the people of Borno State and the entire Northeast.

“I am appealing to Mr. President to look into this issue so that the Army University, Biu, will remain autonomous. If this cannot be possible, we still want to appeal to the President to allow the Federal Ministry of Education to take it over to become a conventional university.

“If possible, the Federal Government should allow it to function as an Army University, considering the importance of education in this part of the country. We are all aware that Boko Haram’s primary mission is to truncate western education. So, collapsing the Army University as a Faculty within the NDA is like helping the insurgents to achieve their objectives.”

“But in all fairness to the Federal Government, this decision is long overdue and timely, especially now that the government is working to reposition the economy and block leakages.

“That notwithstanding, we the people of Borno and the Northeast, are appealing to the Federal Government to reconsider the decision to merge the Army University with the NDA.”

“In Borno, we need education more than ever, and the Army University is vital in achieving that. If you look at Biu, for example, it produces many applicants seeking university admission,” Zulum added.

…NCAM’s autonomy will boost FG’s agricultural revival, food security

Governor Zulum also observed that with the Federal Government’s effort to revive agriculture and boost food security, the National Centre for Agricultural Mechanisation (NCAM), will play a vital role in achieving the President’s mandate.

The Governor stated that, “I also want to comment on NCAM. I was in Ilorin a few months ago and visited NCAM. I have seen them fabricating a lot of agricultural machinery, which I think is very important now.

“When the Federal Government is looking to promote food security through sustainable agriculture, NCAM is the only government mechanisation outfit in Nigeria saddled with the responsibility of fabricating agricultural tools. For this, I urge the Federal Government to look in and reconsider its decisions critically, including situating NCAM under the supervision of the Federal Ministry of Science.”

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