Posted by News Express | 7 March 2015 | 2,407 times
President Goodluck Jonathan on Friday laid the foundation stone for the rebuilding of Government Secondary School Chibok, which was destroyed by Boko Haram.
The President, who was represented by the Coordinating Minister for the Economy and Minister of Finance, Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, said his administration is determined to root out insurgency in the North-East region to enable residents of the area return to normal life.
“We sympathise with the Chibok community. We know what you are going through. But I want to assure you that we are working day and night to make sure that life returns to normal both in your community and all others affected by terrorism.
“This administration promised to rebuild the Government Secondary School in Chibok which was destroyed by terrorists. Today, I am laying the foundation for the remodelling and reconstruction of this school.
“We want our students to go back to school. We want them to get the education they need to live a decent life. We will support them and we will do everything we can to support their parents and the entire community.
“We will also not forget the Chibok girls. We are working hard to ensure that they return home. As a father, I can feel the pain of the parents. What happened was tragic. But I want you to know that this administration cares. We will not abandon our children. We are with you.”
The reconstructed school, according to her, is expected to have a state-of-the-art library, laboratory, computer, ICT Centre, a sports arena and a clinic. For security, it will have a gate house and observation post to be manned by well-equipped security agents.
Given the fact that most of the staff quarters, including that of the Principal were destroyed during the attack, she said, a new staff accommodation and a principal house would be constructed, adding that the school would run on solar power, while a water reservoir would be built for the new dormitories as well as a brand new administration block.
Over 3000 students in Chibok have been unable to return to school since the deadly attack by Boko Haram in the community.
The President noted that while serious efforts are still being made to rescue the kidnapped girls, the students that are currently at home should be supported to return to school.
Most importantly, he stated, the kidnapped girls should return to a community that has seen some improvement in their absence.
The principal of the school, Hajiya Asabe Ali Kwambula stated that “this is the happiest day of my life.”
She thanked the government and welcomed the President to the community.
The Minister was accompanied by DG MEMA, Alhaji Sani Sidi, Air Commodore Charles Otegbede and other dignitaries.
•Photo shows Jonathan
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