Every era has remarkable events that characterize and distinguish it from the other. In each case, the events that characterize an era are either good or bad. If they are good, they create memories that the people and posterity can hardly forget. Where they are considered bad, the consequences are always regrettable. In every age and time, the desire of the people has always been that of the good and not of the bad.
When the good people of Enugu State voted massively for Dr. Lawrence Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, their desire was that of the good. In return, the people are having it all good. Gov. Ugwanyi in his wisdom decided to hand Enugu State into the hands of God. All through his first tenure and now that he is about to be sworn in for the second tenure, he has never failed to recall that Enugu State is in the hands of God. That has remained the basis for the good things the good people are enjoying.
The Institute of Management and Technology (IMT) Enugu has witnessed tremendous development under the leadership of Ugwuanyi. Prior to 2015, IMT, Enugu was in a total state of decay. The infrastructural state of the Institute was nothing to write home about. Staff salaries, promotions and arrears were not paid and attended to as and when due. Accreditations of so many departments were in arrears.
To ensure that his desire and purpose for IMT is achieved, Ugwuanyi appointed two thorough bred Accountants and Fellows of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) Deaconess Mrs.Ifeoma Nwobodo and Prof. Austin Uchechukwu Nweze as the Chairman, IMT Governing Council and the Rector respectively. The duo, are accomplished professionals who have made invaluable contributions inthe private and public sector.
It is on record that since 2016, IMT has witnessed massive investment and funding courtesy of Ugwuanyi’s administration. The governor has been so magnanimous to IMT that payment of salary to staff as far as he is concerned is something which Enugu state workers are entitled to as of right. To this end, he has ensured that monthly subventions to IMT is released without much ado.
Ugwuanyi has ensured that the issue of accreditation of courses by the National Board for Technical Education ((NBTE) is of primary concern to his government. Prompt release of fund for accreditations had always be sought and secured by the managers of the Institution without delay. The latest being the approval of₦252,456,917.62 (two hundred and fifty-two million, four hundred and fifty-six thousand, nine hundred and seventeen naira, sixty-two kobo)for the re-accreditation of 48 programmes that their previous accreditation has expired.
Before the current administration came on board, most administrative and classroom blocks were in horrible state. With the diligence of Council and Management and courtesy of the Governor’s benevolence, these blocks of classrooms and offices were renovated with the state of art infrastructure.
Today, more than ever before, IMT, Enugu has become a hub of construction site. Between 2016 – 2018, the Governor had cumulatively released over 1.1billion for the upgrade of infrastructures in the whole Institute. With this release has come, the on-going construction of convenience for both staff and students, two-storey building block of classrooms,office complexes, lecture theaters etc. Further to this, is the construction of internal networks of roads within the Institute up to Rector’s village.
During the Fourth Distinguished Academic Lecture series, delivered by the Governor, scholarships were given to three hundred and forty (340)indigents students of Enugu State origin in the School of Engineering. In addition, the Governor also further approved the sum of thirty-six million naira (₦36, 000,000.00) for the refurbishment of the Radio Studio in the Department of Mass Communication. This when completed will enable the department be at par with their contemporaries in terms of being live on air and providing a good training ground for future broadcasters.
It may interest the general public to note further, that during its meeting of 31st August, 2018, the National University Commission (NUC)considered and approved the affiliation arrangement and the establishment of full-time mode of the under listed programme(s) to be ran in the campus of the Institute effective from the 2018/2019 academic session. They are;Marketing, Accountancy, Banking and Finance, Statistics, Public Administration and Business Administration.
The first batch of students who secured admissions into these programmes have since resumed lectures to the glory of God.The affiliation could not have been a success without the full support of Ugwuanyi and that of the very dogged and diligent Council and Management led by Deaconess Mrs. Ifeoma Nwobodo and Prof. Austin Uchechukwu Nweze.
From available records, no other government since the history of this state has been so benevolent to IMT, Enugu like Ugwuanyi. It is therefore, not exaggeration to say that IMT, Enugu has never had it so good like this. These are not emotional conclusions but rather plain facts which are verifiable.
It is on this note, that the recent publications on national dailies and some online media platforms by some estranged staff of the Institute who were sacked for reasons bordering on gross misconduct, insubordinations and acts capable of crippling the Institute were found despicable, unfortunate and a joke taken too far.
For those who want to pursue their selfish interests in the guise of unionism, should look at the facts on ground. These issues are beyond routine politics, mutual poking or emotions. We should not be in a haste to forget our past and or where we are coming from. The story has not been so good the way it is now under the watch of Ugwuanyi. Like the proverbial Oliver Twist, we may ask for more but to claim ignorance of the quantum of investment by the State Government in IMT, Enugu is to say the least, the most wicked thing anybody can do.
Eze writes from Institute of Management and Technology (IMT) Independence Layout, Enugu.