By Chibueze Nwagadu
It is confirmed now that a brand new unique and specialised University has berthed in Enugu state, courtesy of Governor Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi’s administration.
The University which seems to be first of it’s kind in the country and to be owned by a state government is called State University Of Medical And Applied Science (SUMAS) Igbo- Eno, Enugu State.
The National Universities Commission (NUC) recently approved the license for take off of the State University Of Medical And Applied Science (SUMAS) Igbo- Eno, Enugu making it the second state-owned university, after Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT)
The license recognising SUMAS as the 2nd Enugu State owned university was issued to Enugu State Governor, His Excellency Rt. Hon. Dr. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi by the National Universities Commission (NUC) at its office in Abuja.
It would be recalled that
following the enactment of the State University of Medical and Applied Sciences (SUMAS), Law, Igbo-Eno, Enugu State on April 13, 2022, Enugu State Government presented at the National Universities Commission the Law establishing SUMAS along with the Academic brief and Master Plan of the new University.
With the granting of licence to SUMAS, Igbo-Eno, Enugu State, the state now has a brand new, full fledged state -owned, State University of Medical and Applied Sciences (SUMAS)
With this, SUMAS has become the 59th State university in Nigeria and the 219th in Nigeria.
Enugu State with two state universities has now joined the league of states with more than one state university such as Delta State (with four state universities), Lagos (with three state universities) Imo (with three state universities), Edo State (with two state universities), Sokoto (with two state universities).
Others include Ebonyi State with two, Ogun State with two, Bayelsa State with two, Kogi State with two, Ekiti State with two Gombe State with two and others.
Speaking on the development, renowned academic and deputy Chief of Staff, Government House, Enugu, Prof. Malachy Okwueze said: “We can’t thank Enugu State Governor, His Excellency Rt. Hon. Dr. Ugwuanyi, enough for achieving this goal of providing the platform for increased access to quality university education for our teaming youths who struggle year after year to gain admission into the university without fulfilling their desires and dreams for university education.
“This is especially for professional course such as Medicine. The existing Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT) gets over 2, 000 applications from our youths to study medicine yearly, but only a paltry 50 applicants are offered admission to study medicine at the end.
Even the Uiversity of Nigeria Nsukka, the Federal University in Enugu State offers only about 180 applicants admission into medicine leaving the dreams of thousands of youths to study medicine dashed year after year.
“This is despite the deficit in the number medical doctors and nurses required to optimize medical and health care for Enugu people.
“Enugu people are therefore overjoyed and are already celebrating our dear Governor Ugwuanyi on this feat.
Enugu State government has made provision for sustainable funding of the new University.”
Already on ground and nearing completion at the new University are two sections of a teaching hospital sitting on two floors the outpatient department of seven sections and inpatient department with 200 bed ward. Hostels, offices and internal road networks and others.
It has been confirmed that the management of the new University will be constituted very soon as the University will take off in September this year.
Meanwhile, the actualisation of the brand new University by Ugwuanyi’s administration will make it two higher institutions the administration has built and attracted to the state in the last two years.
It would be recalled that in 2021 and against all odds, Gov. Ugwuanyi attracted the Federal Polytechnic, Ohodo, Igbo-Etiti LGA.
Before the attraction of the Polytechnic which is about to take off at its temporal site at Community Secondary School, Ohodo with the appointment of management staff and recruitment of academic and non academic staff, many were highly skeptical of its possibility or actualisation. They were of the parochial and fixated views that the All Progressives Congress (APC) led-Federal Government will not easily grant such approval or concede such a monumental and enduring legacy project like Federal Polytechnic to Enugu State under Ugwuanyi’s watch for reasons which include that Ugwuanyi is not of APC stock and he has not overtly made move to attract such gigantic and development project from the Federal Government before now.
They taunted Ugwuanyi’s administration and labelled it a failure. For sense of entitlement mentality, they were critical and antagonistic of Ugwuanyi and his government. They maliciously and emotionally compared Ugwuanyi’s administration with that of his predecessors, without factually and statistically placing critical issues like state of the economy, state wage bill, political awareness, cost of running government, political situations, an other key indices of governance then and since Ugwuanyi assumed office.
But today, all these are balderdash and beer parlour talks for Ugwuanyi proved them wrong with the approval letter with N2b take-off grant addressed to him and signed by Permanent Secretary Federal Ministry of Education, Arch. Sonny S. T. Echono on behalf of Minister of Education, Mallam Adamu Adamu, for the immediate establishment and take-off of the Federal Polytecthnic Ohodo in Igbo-Etiti LGA of Enugu.
What a masterstroke by a leader who knows his way, where and how to get what he wants without being noisy.
What an unprecedented feat of actualisation two higher institutions in Enugu in less than two years.
No doubt, the two higher institutions will leapfrog the economic, human and developmental capital, and status of entire state, particularly Enugu North Senatorial zone. They will complement and co- exist side by side with the University of Nigeria Nsukka and Enugu State Polytechnic, Iwolo.
Nwagadu writes from University market road, Nsukka