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Bursary Verification: Delta Saves N400 Million....

By Kenneth Orusi, Asaba
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Delta State government has saved a whooping sum of N400 million from the last verification exercise embarked upon by the Delta State Bursary and Scholarship Board, the Executive Secretary of the Board, Comrade Elijah Ologe has said.

According to Comrade Ologe, over 41, 000 students of the state origin applied for the scheme but after the Board subjected them to a rigorous screening, the number came down to 21, 000 students.

The Executive Secretary stated this Thursday when the leadership and members of the Indigenous Newspaper/Magazine Chapel, (INMC), an arm of the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), paid him and some members of the Board a courtesy visit in his office in Asaba.

He said the Board met a lot challenges when they came on board but they took pragmatic move to surmount the challenges, “we discovered that some students who are not Deltans are finding their way into our bursary and scholarship scheme. So, we decided to partner with the National Identification Management Commission (NIMC), to tackle the challenge of infiltration”.

“Some persons have criticized some of my stance on certain issues but that is the way I have always seen it. I believe in up right principles guided by the law”, he asserted.

He stressed that before a student was registered, he/she must have been registered with NIMC and must also have gotten his/her Bank Verification Number (BVN), “if you register as a Deltan for the sake of bursary, it will have effect on you for life”, the Executive Secretary warned defiant.

“Though, we have challenges in this Board due to the recession, the governor has approved the payment of the 2013/2014 bursary. We are now moving into the 2015/2016 scheme”, assuring that the Board would do all within its powers to ensure that students of Delta origin get registered.

He disclosed that states like Sokoto, Bayelsa and Rivers were unable to run the programme and have had cause to bring back their students abroad and deregistered the programme but Delta have continued strongly by blocking all leakages.

He took the avenue to call on Deltans to throw their weights behind the Senator (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa-led administration, “despite the economic recession, the governor is trying his best to do projects in the state”, noting that his country home of Uduophori community in Patani Local Government Area whose road has been abandoned since Bendel has been constructed by Okowa.

Though, he lamented that journalists in the country have not gotten their place of pride in the scheme of things despite their dogged fight in seeing that the country gets her independence and democracy, he assured them that God would reward them.

“Though, you are not in the right place that you are supposed to be, it is unfortunate. Even when the military try to suppress you, you fought to see that we enjoy the democracy that we enjoy today”.

He expressed hope that journalists would get there some day as God would reward their efforts even as he commended the Chapel for deeming him worthy for the visit.