Uduaghan’s Silent Revolution In Education, Health
Dr. Emmanuel Uduaghan, the Governor of Delta State, is an achiever who would prefer his works to speak for him rather than flaunt them on the pages of Newspapers. True to his nature, Dr. Uduaghan devoted the most part of his first term (2007 – 2011) to creating a peaceful environment for genuine enterprise to thrive. His three point agenda of Peace and Security, Human Capital Development and Infrastructure Development became the centre point of his developmental programmes. His Delta beyond oil mantra signaled the end of an era and the beginning of a new one.
Every developmental imperative must be anchored on a future Delta that is less dependent on oil resource. It is therefore not surprising that he first tackled the challenges of insecurity that beset his administration such as kidnapping, armed robbery and communal unrests. Having secured a safe state for investors to come in, he began to improve on critical infrastructure especially in the areas of education and health.
In education, Dr. Uduaghan commenced an ambitious upgrading of some primary and secondary schools as well as building new ones. Some of the Primary and Secondary Schools he upgraded are GRA Model Primary School, Asaba, St. Patricks College, Asaba, Abu-Ator Primary School, Agbeje Primary School, Ugbuwangue, A.G.G.S Ozoro, Asagba Primary School, Asaba, Atuwase II Model School, Warri, Cavegina Primary School, Warri and Emede Grammar School, Emede. Others are Etako Primary School, Oghara, Government College, Ughelli, Igbudu Primary School, Warri and a host of others too numerous to mention here. In order to assist students of Delta State origin in secondary and tertiary institutions to excel Dr. Uduaghan’s government pays WAEC and NECO exam fees for them to take the burden of such fees from parents and guardians. Uduaghan also offers bursary and scholarship to deserving Delta State students in higher institutions. Most outstanding, however, is the grant he gives to 1st class university graduates to pursue degrees in any university of their choice in the world.
In Health, Dr. Uduaghan has built a first class primary health care system that is second to none. Apart from massive renovations and upgrading of medical facilities all over the state, Uduaghan has also build a 100 bed integrated mother and child care complex in the precincts of the Central Hospital, Warri as well as the General Hospital, Ekpan to complement his free maternal and under-five free health care programme. The Eku Government Baptist Hospital, a 200 bed facility has been taken over from its former owners by the Delta State Government and re-equipped with state of the art medical facilities. Also a 23 bed mobile field hospital with 10 fully equipped ambulances has been commissioned to boost the state’s health care delivery. To Uduaghan’s credit is the medical feat achieved by the Delta State University Teaching Hospital, Oghara which recently recorded a successful kidney transplant.
As Dr. Uduaghan prepares to vacate office by May 29, 2015, it is expected that his successor will not only maintain the level of health care delivery in Delta State but also strive to improve upon it. Dr. Uduaghan’s legacies in the areas of education and health should not be allowed to deteriorate, for to do so is to render a disservice to a visionary leader who restored hope in some critical areas of our social and economic life.
Prince Obaro Unuafe is the National Coordinator of Campaign for Good Governance.