The Bayelsa State Government has said that it has made remarkable progress in its efforts to uplift the standard of education in the state but that so much still needs to be done to make the sector more viable.
The State Commissioner for Education, Hon. Gentle Emelah stated this in an interview with Nigerdeltaconnect in his office in Yenagoa, the state capital.
He said one of the proof to its efforts is the fact that courses in the state higher institutions which hitherto were not accredited has gotten their accreditation, which has now made certificates obtained from the higher institutions to be valid and recognized in the state and beyond.
Emelah stated that education remains a key thrust of the Prosperity Administration, which it inherited from the immediate past administration, adding that Governor Douye Diri is fully committed to leave his footprints in the sector.
The Commissioner explained that the state government has decided to build one technical college across each of the eight local government areas which will enable the youths to learn different kinds of skills, that will in turn reduce the rate of crime, unemployment and the over-dependence on white collar jobs.
He further explained that another aim of the technical colleges is to equip the youths to be in a position to compete technically, which will make the government look inwards when seeking technical support in the state, adding that there is presently a technical college in Okaka and Swali and others will soon be opened in Opume, Nembe, Kolokuma and Ekeremor.
He said: “The technical college in Okaka has close to two thousand students in attendance, which shows that it is accepted by Bayelsans. These technical colleges will ensure that youths in Bayelsa State do not depend solely on the government but on the skills they have acquired from these technical colleges and they will in turn be employers of labour in the state”.
Reacting to the deplorable condition of the state library, Emelah said he felt sad when he visited the place but disclosed that the government has concluded plans to develop the library into a standard library town which will include indoor and outdoor games and will in turn increase the reading culture of the state.
On the issue of the federal government school feeding programme Emelah said; “state government is in the process of getting cooks for the programme to begin and these cooks have to be natives of the communities and live in the community where the schools are located. The programme covers only primary school children in primary 1 to 3”, he added.