In fulfillment of his promise to extend free education to the State owned tertiary institutions, the Imo State governor has distributed scholarship forms to students of Imo State origin.
Speaking during the official launching of the scholarship forms at Heroes square, Owerri yesterday, Governor Rochas Okorocha directed the students to pick the forms from their respective Traditional Rulers.
Other places where the students can obtain the scholarship forms as recommended by the governor include the office of the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), the State Ministry of Education and from the schools� authorities.
The Governor reiterated that the free education programme will commence in September, adding that the State government will grant the sum of one hundred thousand naira (N100,000) to each student of Imo State origin studying in the State university and eighty-thousand naira ( N80,000) to all students in the State-owned Polytechnic who are indigenes of the State.
The said money according to the governor is to enable the students pay their school fees and use the balance as loan payable when they secure employment after their graduation from school.
For those at OND level in the State Polytechnics said the governor, the students will get sixty-thousand naira( N60,000), broken down into N40,000 for school fees and N20,000 as loan while those at HND level will get eighty thousand naira ( N80,000), broken down into N60,000 for school fees and N20,000 as loan. Similarly, the primary and secondary schools are to receive grants of 25,000 naira and 40,000 naira respectively to enable the pay their school fees.
Speaking further at the occasion, the governor said that the free education programme will be extended to indigenes of Imo State schooling in other tertiary institutions during the second phase of the programme, adding that indigent students of the State owned schools that are non-indigenes will be given scholarships as well.
He disclosed plans by the State government to sponsor 21 students for degree courses in Medicine, Agricultural sciences and Engineering in the Republic of Kosovo.
Governor Okorocha used the opportunity to advise students to shun prostitution, cultism and examination malpractice by taking their studies seriously especially now that government has taken off the burden of paying school fees from them, adding that government has accepted to settle salaries and emoluments of the academic and non-academic staff owed by the schools before the commencement of the programme.
In their separate speeches, the Vice Chancellor of Imo State University, Professor Bertrand Nwoke and the Rector of Imo State Polytechnic, Rev. Fr. Wence Madu, pointed out that the event has solved the problem of funding in their schools.
They both stated that they have agreed to all the agreements between the Imo State Government and their schools as contained in the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), pledging that they will support the programmes rolled out by the State government which are aimed at making the schools self-sustaining.
Dignitaries present at the occasion include, the Speaker of Imo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Ben Uwajumogu, the Chairman of Imo State Council of Traditional Rulers, Eze Samuel Agunwa Ohiri and a host of others.
Related: Imo State Government Scholarships for Imo State Students