Achievements in leadership are a leader’s claim for success. It is upon one’s achievement/s that legacy can be built. As a government, just as in private life, the amount of achievements an administration is able to record to its name is what gives moral justification to seek re-election.
Politicians always love to be perceived as working. Such a fine perception is a political capital that a typical politician would rather have. And in fairness to the political class, every single one of us desires to be seen and regarded in good light. This natural craving is what makes it imperative that we all look beyond the surface when adjudging an individual or a government. And a citizen has a moral obligation to query the claims of their government to ascertain the genuineness of their every claim.
For the purposes of fairness and good faith, this piece will present a corroboration of the scorecard of the Governor Abubakar led administration in Bauchi in the area of Scholarships
The scholarship needs of a state is virtually unlimited. And for a state like ours, Bauchi, with a Governor who has immense sense of duty toward entrenching a culture of knowledge, the burden is a no mean task.
Governor Muhammad Abubakar is a man who loves his people dearly. Of a particular interest is the attention he has consistently put on easing the cost of acquiring education by the young people of Bauchi state.
Within his first few months in office, Governor Mohammed Abubakar approved the immediate release of the sum of three hundred and thirty-five million, nine hundred and twenty thousand, one hundred and four naira [335,920,104NGN] to the Bauchi State Scholarship Board for the update and maintenance of its ICT portal.
As one who understands the need for our youngsters as leaders in training to become socially responsible, funds were made available for the 2015 and 2016 NUBASS national conventions and elections.
The sum of four million, five hundred and thirty-five thousand, seven hundred and fifty naira [4,535,750:00] was approved and released as the State governments support towards the successful conduct of the 2015 and 2016 NUBASS national convention.
During this time, the Bauchi state overseas scholarships, BEA, NCE, and JCC, local scholarships, law students allowances received their disbursements.
No doubt, the Governor is a man of great innovation. This is seen by his directive on the Adoption of electronic application and payment of scholarships. To his credits, the policy came to a great success as it eliminates the prevalence of diversion of funds unintended beneficiaries and the inevitable human errors associated with tedious paperwork. Also, this brilliance has eliminated the costs and risk involved in travelling to all institutions.
It must be noted that even though the idea of an e-scholarship had been on, it was not until the innovativeness of a digitally minded Governor Abubakar ‘happened’ to it that it finally came alive. The Board therefore initiated and received the blessings of the state government which approved the adoption of E-scholarship payment system.
E-scholarship payment will resume in the 2017/2018 academic session.
Great times are here for Bauchi state students – specifically for the law students of Bauchi origin. The administration of Governor Abubakar, through the Board paid a whopping sum of four hundred and fifteen thousand naira (415,000:00) to each student of the Nigerian Law School of Bauchi state origin.
As a leader who will never shy away from his responsibilities, Governor Mohammed Abubakar released the sum of thirty-one million, eight hundred and five thousand naira out of the outstanding thirty-eight million, eight hundred and fifteen thousand naira [39,815,001:00] to offset the backlogs inherited from the past administration in respect of the 2013/2014 and initial payment for 2014/2015 academic sessions.
One of the outstanding leadership traits of Mr Abubakar’s is his sincerity and openness. When the financial straits of 2016 became too biting, the Governor made a wide consultation with the stakeholders on the sustainability of foreign scholarship. Sadly, it was agreed that the scheme be suspended in 2016. This left the man Governor very devastated.
Thankfully, by 2017 when the economic outlook became promising, the Governor insisted that the scheme be resumed immediately. The pay off is that Bauchi is closing the gap in the supply of manpower in critical sectors where there had been short supply.
As expected, the resumption of the scheme leaves a hard consequence of one hundred and fifteen million, eight hundred and forty-nine thousand, six hundred and seventy-eight naira, forty-two kobo [115,849,678:40] on the state’s treasury. The foreign students had their phones beeping with alerts in their respective countries of study.
Similarly, Bauchi state is fulfilling its in the Joint Consultative Committee on Education, JCCE. The JCCE is an avenue created by the federal ministry of Education to compile documents preparatory to the meeting of National Council on Education. Again, the education loving Governor has directed the release of the required sum of three hundred and thirty-four thousand, two hundred and forty-three naira [343,250:00]
Added to the Governor Abubakar Mohammed giant stride in Education and scholarship is the good use he has made of the Bilateral Education Agreement between Nigeria and member countries. Some of the participating countries include Algeria, Egypt, Brazil, China, Russia, Cyprus etc. As an annual scholarship program for both the undergraduate and postgraduate studies, opportunity is given to successful Bauchi students to study in the participating countries on full scholarship.
Now that the the Bauchi state has shown due commitment to the cause of scholarships, there can be not surprises about his popularity among the Bauchi students. Households in their majority now have direct beneficiaries of Governor Abubakar’s purposeful leadership.
What then does this hold for the Governor’s well deserved re-election bid? This is not for me to answer. I do know, however, that one good turn deserves another.
Bala wrote in from Bauchi