Aloysius Attah, Onitsha
The Management of Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University (COOU) and a Chinese based firm, HZCEC Engineering, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the building of an international standard hostel for the teeming number of students residing off campus.
Performing the symbolic signing of the MoU in the Council Chamber of the University, the representatives of the Chinese company, Moses Okonkwo, handed over the prototype and structural design with specifications to the University management promising that the project will not only take off but completed at the record time.
Acting Vice Chancellor of COOU, Prof. Greg Nwakoby, who decried the abysmal shortage of student hostels in the Igbariam Campus of the University, expressed optimism that with the building of the proposed three hostels for a start, students will be spared the agony of commuting from outside campuses for their hostels and undue exploitation of their shylock landlords.
He said the project would be executed under a Build, Operate and Transfer arrangement with an amortization period of 25 years.
Governor Willie Obiano, represented by the Commissioner for Tertiary and Science Education, Prof. Obiekezie Theresa, assured of the state government’s commitment to the education sector and of particular attention to the state university named after the great Igbo leader, Emeka Odumegwu Ojukwu.
Giving further breakdown of the project, Okonkwo representing the developer and main contractor for the project disclosed that the one block of the hostel will contain 520 rooms that is expected to contain maximum of four students in suite with additional conveniences with the idea of building a comfortable environment where the students can live and study at the same time.
He said security, electricity, laundry services, water with a 500-seater refectory on the ground floor with other support services will be provided in the hostel including standard library while close circuit cameras will be installed all geared towards ensuring comfort and better learning environment for the students.
A Catholic Priest who was part of the delegation, Rev. Prof. Chukwuemeka Agbonome, expressed hope that with both parties carrying out their roles effectively in the project, tomorrow will turn out better than today in the university.