BY ADEBIYI ADEDAPO
The House of Representatives committee on Federal Capital Territory (FCT) yesterday approved a Bill for an Act, seeking to establish a university of science and technology for the FCT, located in Abaji.
The committee had last week approved a Bill to establish the FCT College of Agriculture which will be located in Yaba.
Chairman of the committee, Hon. Herman Hembe noted that the two institutions would focus on the purpose for their establishment in line with their acts of establishment..
Hembe said the committee would ensure it worked with its senate counterpart for the two chambers to pass the two bills and forward them to President Muhammadu Buhari for his assent before the next academic session.
“One of the problems that contributed to this long delay is probably one of the Chambers complete works on the bill and the other could not. It could also be that the two Houses were able to finish work on the bills and send it to the President for assent but for a reason or another he could not.
“This time, the House is going to ensure that the Senate expedite action on it and send to the President for assent. The school is ready, the infrastructures are in place and ready to take in 200 students.
“So, we are mindful of the benefits this would impact on our education system and FCT in particular and that is why we are determined this time, to make this a reality because it is unthinkable that the FCT does not have its own tertiary institution,” Hembe said
Speaking at the public hearing, the director of drafting and legal services, FCT administration, Isa Bin Abdullahi, suggested that the name be changed to Abuja University of Science and Technology.
“The name should be all encompassing, so that it will show that the institution is owned by the FCT and not by the city, which is part of the FCT,” Hembe said.
On his part, a member of the committee, Jonathan Gaza Gbefwi (PDP, Nasarawa) said: “In as much as we’re looking at nomenclature, we must look at the yearning of the people and the environment. We need to go with a name that connotes ownership.”
Also speaking, the director of department of private universities at the National Universities Commission (NUC), Abdullahi Hamza, said the name suggested for the university should be retained.
The committee therefore adopted the original name as contained in the draft bill.