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The Enugu government starts examining smart school and healthcare initiatives

Apr 22, 2024 | Health | 0 comments

Governor of Enugu State, Dr. Peter Mbah, has urged contractors and site engineers overseeing the construction of 260 smart schools and 260 Type-2 Primary Health facilities in the state’s 260 wards to deliver world-class projects that will stand the test of time.

Mbah urged them to utilize quality materials and adhere to specifications, cautioning that any sharp practices would incur severe sanctions and rejection by the government.

He also emphasized the need for contractors to complete their projects on schedule as stipulated in their contract terms.

The governor made these statements through the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Chidiebere Onyia, during an inspection tour of ongoing projects in Ezeagu Local Government Area on Wednesday.

He explained that the purpose of the inspection by the projects monitoring team, which includes the Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engr. Gerald Otiji; Commissioner for Education, Prof. Nwabueze Mbah; Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Hon. Chris Robert Ozongwu; Chairman of the Enugu State Universal Basic Education Board (ENSUBEB), Dr. Gabriel Ajah; Special Adviser to the Governor on Projects Development and Implementation, Uche Nwatu, among others, was to ensure the quality and integrity of the projects, from start to finish.

“We met with the contractors and their site engineers at all the sites we visited. This is to ensure that there is no deviation from the work specifications and that the quality of the materials they are using, from the foundation to completion, could guarantee the integrity and structural durability of these projects.

“What His Excellency aims to achieve here is to ensure that we do not encounter the three risks that are typical in every construction—considering that there will be a time in Enugu State when we will have almost five hundred live projects – smart schools, primary healthcare facilities – in all the 260 wards, in addition to the road constructions that are ongoing across the board. So, we are building a very strong monitoring team to address the quality aspect of it.

“We are also taking into consideration the cost risk that arises when the time risk begins to materialize because, once we miss the timeline, the next step is that we start to discuss variations. So, this team is here to ensure that all risks are assessed and compliance is strictly adhered to.

“We are also working on engaging with local stakeholders to ensure the security of the process here. That will help us address issues related to the theft of materials brought to the site. But more importantly, at the end of each project, there will be sustainability, and these stakeholders will take ownership of these schools and other projects in their communities.

“So, it is not just about monitoring but also about building on all the key facets that will ensure that these projects achieve the objectives to have smart children and smart teachers coming out of our local governments and a smart workforce for the state,” Prof. Onyia stated.

“That’s why we have accommodation for them, and we are also going to ensure that Enugu generally has a smart workforce. That’s why we are here.”

He allayed fears over the culture of abandoned projects by various government strata, saying that the allocation of 33 percent of the entire 2024 budget to education has guaranteed the start, completion, and handover of the smart school projects on schedule.

Dr. Ajah, the Chairman of ENSUBEB, expressed satisfaction with the quality of work so far, adding that contractors were complying with specifications and immediately correcting gaps.

Admonishing communities to take ownership of the projects, he urged them to see the facilities as their own by ensuring their security.

“Security is everybody’s business. The people are happy. The government has never reached the people at the ward level like this before. So, I am calling on our people to protect these projects from vandals by taking charge and ownership of them,” he concluded.

Governor of Enugu State, Dr. Peter Mbah, has urged contractors and site engineers overseeing the construction of 260 smart schools and 260 Type-2 Primary Health facilities in the state’s 260 wards to deliver world-class projects that will stand the test of time.

Mbah urged them to utilize quality materials and adhere to specifications, cautioning that any sharp practices would incur severe sanctions and rejection by the government.

He also emphasized the need for contractors to complete their projects on schedule as stipulated in their contract terms.

The governor made these statements through the Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Chidiebere Onyia, during an inspection tour of ongoing projects in Ezeagu Local Government Area on Wednesday.

He explained that the purpose of the inspection by the projects monitoring team, which includes the Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engr. Gerald Otiji; Commissioner for Education, Prof. Nwabueze Mbah; Commissioner for Budget and Planning, Hon. Chris Robert Ozongwu; Chairman of the Enugu State Universal Basic Education Board (ENSUBEB), Dr. Gabriel Ajah; Special Adviser to the Governor on Projects Development and Implementation, Uche Nwatu, among others, was to ensure the quality and integrity of the projects, from start to finish.

“We met with the contractors and their site engineers at all the sites we visited. This is to ensure that there is no deviation from the work specifications and that the quality of the materials they are using, from the foundation to completion, could guarantee the integrity and structural durability of these projects.

“What His Excellency aims to achieve here is to ensure that we do not encounter the three risks that are typical in every construction—considering that there will be a time in Enugu State when we will have almost five hundred live projects – smart schools, primary healthcare facilities – in all the 260 wards, in addition to the road constructions that are ongoing across the board. So, we are building a very strong monitoring team to address the quality aspect of it.

“We are also taking into consideration the cost risk that arises when the time risk begins to materialize because, once we miss the timeline, the next step is that we start to discuss variations. So, this team is here to ensure that all risks are assessed and compliance is strictly adhered to.

“We are also working on engaging with local stakeholders to ensure the security of the process here. That will help us address issues related to the theft of materials brought to the site. But more importantly, at the end of each project, there will be sustainability, and these stakeholders will take ownership of these schools and other projects in their communities.

“So, it is not just about monitoring but also about building on all the key facets that will ensure that these projects achieve the objectives to have smart children and smart teachers coming out of our local governments and a smart workforce for the state,” Prof. Onyia stated.

“That’s why we have accommodation for them, and we are also going to ensure that Enugu generally has a smart workforce. That’s why we are here.”

He allayed fears over the culture of abandoned projects by various government strata, saying that the allocation of 33 percent of the entire 2024 budget to education has guaranteed the start, completion, and handover of the smart school projects on schedule.

Dr. Ajah, the Chairman of ENSUBEB, expressed satisfaction with the quality of work so far, adding that contractors were complying with specifications and immediately correcting gaps.

Admonishing communities to take ownership of the projects, he urged them to see the facilities as their own by ensuring their security.

“Security is everybody’s business. The people are happy. The government has never reached the people at the ward level like this before. So, I am calling on our people to protect these projects from vandals by taking charge and ownership of them,” he concluded.

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