The Gombe State Executive Council has approved the sum of one hundred and twelve million for the payment of outstanding scholarship for students of Gombe State origin for 2016, 2017 and 2018 academic sessions.
The State Executive Council meeting which was presided over by Governor Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya also considered and approved the sum of 204 million for the payment of WAEC, NBAIS and NABTEB examination fees for over thirteen thousand final year students of the State.
Briefing Journalists on the outcomes of the 8th edition of the meeting, the Commissioner for Information and Culture, Hon. Ibrahim Alhassan Kwami, alongside his counterparts in Works, Engineer Abubakar Bappah; Education, Dr. Habu Dahiru; Water Resources, Alhaji Mijinyawa Yahaya; and Housing and Urban Development, Alhaji Dishi Kupto, said the issues discussed at the Council were geared towards uplifting the socio-economic and educational standards of the people of the state.
The information commissioner said, “you may recall that the last administration paid only 50 percent of the scholarship for students in 2016/2017, 2017/18 sessions so council now approved the payment of the balance of the 50 percent, and going forward we will continue to pay our students their scholarship entitlements”.
Still on education, he said Council also approved the upgrading of five public schools to model institutions with one in each of the three senatorial districts and two in the state capital owing to its cosmopolitan nature.
This, he said, was in line with Governor Inuwa Yahaya’s desire to reposition the education sector for optimal performance.
On the agricultural sector, the Commissioner of Information said the State Executive Council in its meeting approved the leasing of the Gombe fertilizer blending plant to Tag Agro factory for N7 million per annum for a period of 10 years, disclosing that the State Government has already received 50 percent upfront payment which translates into N35 million.
He said the decision to lease the State fertilizer blending plant was to inject efficiency and promote accountability in the production and timely distribution of fertiliser to farmers across the State.
He said the State Executive Council also approved the sum of two hundred and fifty million naira as counterpart fund for the Partnership for Expanded Water Supply, Sanitation and Hygiene (PEWASH) which is a national collaboration for the improvement of access to water supply and sanitation in Nigeria, through a structured multi-sector partnership.
Expantiating further, the Commissioner of Water Resources, Alhaji Mijinyawa Yahaya said the PEWASH project was designed to build on previous efforts and complement existing water supply and sanitation strategies by instituting a coordination and prioritization framework.
He said it entails the resuscitation of boreholes and construction of new ones in Dukku, Kwami, Furnakaye and Balanga Local Government Areas of the State as first of the State wide project.
On the abandoned ultra modern mega motor park, the Commissioner of information said Council had approved the upward review of the initial contract sum from N6.028 billion to N7.6 billion.
But speaking in specific terms, the Commissioner of Works, Engr Abubakar Bappah said the project was initially awarded to a construction firm that lacked the requisite expertise in similar work, adding that considering the enormity of the civil Engineering work at the project site, Council now awarded the contract to Triacta construction company which has vast experience in the field of engineering design and execution.
“Initially at the packaging stage of the contract bulk of the work was civil engineering but unfortunately when the contract was being awarded, it was given to an unknown civil engineering construction firm and as a result, the firm failed to itemise the civil engineering aspect of the job”.