By Dave Okpogadie, Asaba
Delta State commissioner for Basic and Secondary Education, Chief Patrick Ukah, has commended Total Upstream Company and its partners for their collaboration with the state government towards driving infrastructural development in the education sector in the state.
Chief Ukah, made the commendation in Onicha-Ugbo, Aniocha North Local Government Area, during the official commissioning of a science laboratory and equipment built by Total and its partners.
The commissioner, who was represented by the permanent secretary in the ministry, Comrade Samuel Diateke, said it was heart-warming and a thing of encouragement to receive corporate social responsibility support from Total Upstream Company and its partners.
The commissioner said one of the major challenges confronting the education sector in the state was the issue of vandalization of school facilities and called for all hands to be on deck in the protection of the infrastructure, just as he advised the people of the community to own the facilities.
Earlier in his keynote address, managing director of Total Upstream Company in Nigeria, Mr. Mike Sangster, who spoke on behalf of their partners, said the construction and equipping of the science laboratory was in furtherance of the corporate social responsibility initiatives of its deep-water operations which has adopted the entire country as its host community.
Mr Sangster stated that a total of 33 projects in critical sectors, including education, health, capacity building and water provision, among others, were initiated in 2017 in its first phase.
According to him, a total of 51 additional projects were carried out in the second and third phases of the corporate social responsibility initiative in 2018 and 2019 respectively.
In his remarks, the principal of St. Pius Grammar School, Onicha-Ugbo, Rev. Fr. Dr. Anthony Banye, thanked the donor for finding the school worthy to benefit from the initiative, saying the science laboratory would be optimally utilized for the benefits of the students.
While calling on the leaders and other stakeholders in the community, as well as the state government, to assist the school in protecting the facilities, Rev. FrBanye appealed to the state government to urgently intervene in the crisis between Igbodo in Ika North East Local Government Area and Onicha-Ugbo in Aniocha North Local Government Area in order to ensure peaceful coexistence.