The People’s Democratic Party (PDP), Cross River State Chapter Forum have presented an award of service to the Executive Chairman, State Universal Basic Education Board (SUBEB), Dr Stephen Odey for his laudable achievements in the Basic education sector and his sterling leadership qualities.
The award was presented during a courtesy call paid to the Executive Chairman at the conference room, SUBEB, Calabar.
While presenting the award, the Chairman of the forum, Hon. Kingsley Ntui said the visit was to congratulate the SUBEB Boss on his reappointment and to also award him for his contribution towards the development of the State.
According to him “our visit here is not in error, it was well planned and anticipated and like you know the dynamics of party politics, the party doesn’t move indiscriminately. The party does not go on courtesy calls to appointees, but the party will be forced to move when those appointees have shown exemplary leadership and have made the party proud, just like you have done. You have done creditable well, it is on that basis that we are here to identify with you, congratulate you and to thank you for accepting the mandate to serve in your capacity as Executive Chairman of this able Board for a second time.”
“You are not the only one who was given an appointment by the leader of our party, His Excellency, Prof. Ben Ayade. Several others were given, but today you are the only one we choose to visit. We have watched your activities over time during the previous dispensation, we followed your implementation of projects. We are rural dwellers, we stay in the local government, we interact with our electorates and we know our respective terrains. There are sometimes when projects are executed on radios and news papers but on ground you find out that those projects may not be seen anywhere. However, that has not been the case with SUBEB,” he stated.
Responding, the Executive Chairman SUBEB, Dr Stephen Odey thanked the forum for their kind gesture, his stated that the recognition will spur the Board to greater heights. He further thanked Governor Ben Ayade for once again finding him worthy to serve in the capacity of Executive Chairman.
“I appreciate all of you for the time, love and interest you have demonstrated on-behalf of the People’s Democratic Party. I must thank his Excellency, a man that I have served for close to nine years for finding me worthy to serve here and at the same time for appointing me to head this Board, it is a rare privilege. For you to single me out today, i think it is very historical, and I must say thank you for this honour.”
Odey said the rescue mission agenda which the Board started in his first dispensation yielded several results from the personnel auditing of staff to recruitment of teaching and non teaching staff, amongst others.
According to him “ During my first term, I made a promise on assumption of office that I was on a rescue mission to ensure that Cross River becomes a leading state in terms of basic education and 6 months after my appointment here, I was given an award as the best SUBEB Chairman South – South by the presidency. When I came on board I met a lot of decay, I came to SUBEB and discovered that education which is supposed to be the centre of excellence became a center for fraud, where people forged certificates to try to defraud the government and some others not having the requisite qualifications to deliver the goods.”
“So we embarked on the personnel audit exercise, because no matter the number of fantastic structures we build across the state if we do not have qualified teachers we will not yield any results. The exercise helped to reduce forging of certificates to the barest minimum. We also embarked on recruitment of teachers and security men,” he explained.
Odey further stated that SUBEB is currently running three UBEC model Secondary schools in Akpabuyo, Abi and Yala Local Government Areas
“We came on board and met three UBEC built Junior Secondary Schools that the previous administrations were unable to use. One in Yala, Abi and Akpabuyo LGAs those are the first junior secondary schools that are run directly by SUBEB. Cross River State did not disarticulate completely that is why the Secondary Education Board is controlling junior secondary schools which are supposed to be under the supervision of SUBEB according to the UBE Act.”
Director of Operations, PDP Chairmen Forum, Thomas Odam urged the Board not to relent in their efforts.
He said “what gives us vitality in all we do is that we have key agents of the party who are making the party visible through what they do in the field. We congratulate you and your management team and urge you not to rest on your laurels. This very dispensation is also critical to us as a party because it is a transition period for us and we must be able to sufficiently point to very concrete things we have done as a party to get the support of our people in the coming dispensation. That is why for us this visit is not only historical but also very critical.”
In his vote of thanks, PDP State Chairman, Calabar Municipality, Hon. Otop Oqua , thanked SUBEB Boss and Management Staff, he said the personnel audit exercise and other achievements of the Board geared towards the advancement of basic education in the State has led to Stephen Odey’s reappointment.
Hon. Oqua also stated that the re-appointment is in recognition of his managerial abilities to move basic education in the State to greater heights.