The reported ongoing recruitment of staff by the management of Eastern Palm University despite the orchestrated media hype by the Imo State government that the University which, from all indications, was built with the resources of Imo State has been recovered from the strangle hold of former governor, Rochas Okorocha has sent shivers down the spines of many, who expressed disappointment at the development.
Our reporter who visited the Ogboko, Ideato South LGA Campus of the University, said, aside cleaning the inscriptions on the main entrance of the institution, nothing much has been done by the Hope Uzodinma led government to fully take possession of the University, as publicly announced in the print and electronic media amidst overwhelming applause by excited Imo people at home and in the Diaspora.
Some students of the institution who were interviewed by our reporter said they were told to ignore the directive of the state government as regards the closure and recovery of institution because “nobody has such powers, as our mentor and Daddy Rochas Okorocha is still in charge of affairs”.
They also disclosed that they as students on scholarship pay
N100,000 per session while private students pay N500,000 per session.
It was also gathered that, sequel to the mass exodus of staff from the University, as a result of it’s controversial ownership status, the attendant uncertainty, and lack of job security, the Registrar of the institution, Mr Ernest Onuoha who is said to be related to the wife of the former governor, is presently supervising a recruitment exercise aimed at employing qualified personnel to fill the vacancies occasioned by the mass exodus.
A source in the University who spoke on condition of anonymity said, “the situation here is still very confusing. The Vice Chancellor appointed by former governor Okorocha, Prof. Tola Badejo is still at the helm of affairs with all the structures intact. This has not only negated the position of the state government but has also elicited suspicion, insinuations and misgivings among Imolites at home and in the Diaspora who initially commended the courage and determination of the shared prosperity government towards recovering the institution and changing its name to Kingsley Mbadiwe University in line with the wish of the people”.
Nigeria Watchdog reporter who visited the institution disclosed that an armed police man at the school’s main entrance refused to speak or respond to enquires.
It would be recalled that shortly after the state government sealed and officially recovered the Royal Palm Hotel allegedly owned by Mrs Nkechi Okorocha, the state government announced in the print, electronic and social media, that the EPU has also been officially recovered and renamed Kingsley Mbadiwe University. The announcement was trailed by resounding ovation by Imo people who commended the state government for the bold and courageous people-oriented move, which they described as a step in the right direction.