Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State has signed two new bills into law, aimed at consolidating on the achievements of his administration has made in the education sector in the last five years.
At the signing ceremony inside the Government House Yenagoa, the governor said the two bills; The Bayelsa State Higher Education Student Loan Bill 2017 and the Bayelsa Education Development Trust Fund bill 2017 are very critical in providing sustainable development for the state’s education.
According to him the bills became necessary because of the urgent need to develop human capacity in the state which he said is a compelling need in order to secure the future of children and youths.
” Whereas we have been making critical investment in the last five years in education but it is from today that we will be building on the foundation of sustainability. How all the schools we have built and are building will be sustained, how the legacy of investment in human capacity will be maintained in the years to come” he said.
While thanking members of the House of Assembly for considering the bills expedient, Dickson announced that his government has spent almost fifty billion naira in the development of educational infrastructure and decried the previous decay in the sector as a result of the long years of neglect.
He stressed that any serious government must take issues of security and education very serious for rapid development and called on all those who earn salaries in the state to avail themselves the opportunity of contributing to the education trust fund which is now compulsory by reason of the new law.
” By the provisions of this law, everyone who is working and earning salary, doing business or involved in contracts in the state is liable to pay the education development levy”.
The governor who announced the appointment of renowned educationist and former Minister of Science and Technology, Prof. Turner Isoun to head the trust fund pleaded with the organized labour in the state not to allow themselves to be used to unduly politicize the new law as it affects in one way or the other everyone desrious of quality education for their chilldren or wards.
Governor Dickson added that with the new model schools, the ongoing constituency secondary schools and the delightful Ijaw National Academy as well as other educational interventions, Bayelsa State is blazing the trail in the nation’s education sector and is poise to maintain a pole position.
Earlier before formally presenting the bills for the governor’s assent, the Speaker of the Assembly, Konbowei Benson emphasized that the higher education student loan bill will help indigent students desirous of getting quality education but cannot afford it to do so with ease.
He appreciated the governor for keeping to his words of not playing politics with education and for declaring a state of emergency in the sector and stated that the assembly had no problems passing both bills because of their huge importance.