Prof. Aloysius-Michaels Okolie, the Vice Chancellor (VC), Enugu State University of Science and Technology (ESUT), says his administration is committed to the digitalisation of the institution.
Okolie said this at a news conference on Thursday in Agbani campus of the institution, to mark his 365 days (one year) in office.
He noted that digitisation of the institution would help to improve the welfare of students and members of staff.
“We are making efforts to digitalise our records and migrate to a new platform for handling of transcripts, but this is currently at the teething period.
“MTN has almost finished laying fibre cables within and around the campus and we are hopeful that full 4G network will be launched before the end of the month.
“This is to provide free WiFi for students in designated areas,” the VC said.
Okolie said a debt of over N1billion was inherited on his assumption of office, out of which he had spent N124,143,696.64 in 2022 on repayment of debt.
He said the management was doing everything possible to better the working condition of the staff and create a better learning environment for students in spite of paucity of funds.
The VC said the institution receives a total of N204,000,000 as subvention, adding that N136,000,000comes from the state government while each Local Government Area (LGA) contributes N4million.
“At present, some LGAs have reneged on payments by specified months and the total indebtedness arising from the non-payments amounts to N184,000,000.
“Even when the total subvention is paid in full, the management must augment to the tune of nearly N200 million to pay the monthly salaries of workers.
“It is heart warming to note that through prudent management of the available resources, we have succeeded in reducing the institution wage bill to N40 million currently,” he said.
Okolie noted that the management has been able to pay the staff their monthly salaries regularly, in spite of the numerous challenges they met on ground.
He said on resumption of office, the management was confronted by a number of clashing, splashing challenges, interest and inadequate funds to provide the needed infrastructure and welfare to workers.
“A debt of over N1billion, accumulation of convocation since 2016, unpaid two months staff salaries, other arrears, poor network and other humanitarians needs were inherited,” he said.
According to Okolie, some of these challenges we have managed to address while working on some others.
“There are other activities taken up by the management to improve the standard of service delivery and that includes migration from statement of result to certificates.
“There are also prompt processing of certificates, promotion of fundamental principles of management by inclusive participation, use of committee-system approach and others,” Okolie said.
He noted that the institution was interfacing with the security institution to ensure adequate security and making efforts to fence the institution.
Okolie said they are working seriously to make the Faculty of Agriculture a centre for excellence whereby what their produce would feed the institution and the society at large.
The News Agency of (NAN) reports that Okolie was appointed VC on April 4, 2022, and assumed office on April 12. (NAN)