The quest to promote local content and stop the unwholesome outsourcing
of jobs to foreigners led to the establishment of the Federal University
of Petroleum Resources, Effurun.

The Minister of
Education, Mallam Ibrahim Shekarau made this known on Wednesday, July
16, 2014 in Abuja during the University’s endowment fund
launch.

He noted that the desire of the Federal
Government was to develop manpower in the oil/gas sector to ensure
indigenous control and enhance the economic prosperity of the people and
the nation.

Mallam Shekarau who was represented by
the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Dr. MacJhon Nwaobiala
said the endowment was to build a world-class University in the oil-rich
Niger Delta region, stressing that there was the need for stakeholders
and well-meaning Nigerians to donate generously either in cash or
infrastructure to realise the dream of the
University.

In an opening address, the Chairman of
the occasion, Chief Edwin K. Clark, had reflected on the history of the
University and urged the guests to donate towards making the University
an international standard like the University of Aberdeen and MIT in
America.

While noting the efforts of President
Jonathan’s administration in establishing more Universities, he pleaded
with Nigerians to contribute to the noble cause of building FUPRE into a
world-class University.

Earlier, the Pro-Chancellor
and Chairman of Council, Sen. Nimi Barigha-Amange elaborated on the
objective of the endowment fund, emphasising that to achieve the mandate
of the University, it became necessary to look for alternative means of
raising funds to develop the University, which resulted in the
establishment of N100 Billion Endowment Fund.

He
noted that the focus of the Governing Council was to seek ways to
urgently provide infrastructure, lecture halls, students’ hostels,
Library, Administrative building and other facilities to make the
University conducive for learning and research.

Sen.
Barigha-Amenge called on stakeholders in the oil/gas industry to build
the University as a contribution to the nation by adopting some of the
buildings which are listed in the endowment brochure, and leave an
enduring legacy that they would be remembered
for.

Also in his address, the Vice-Chancellor of the
University, Prof. John Ovwata Etu-Efeotor noted that the burden of
building a world-class University cannot be left alone for the Federal
Government, adding that the input and support of all stakeholders are
required in the development drive of the University, which called for
the endowment fund raising.

He said that the current
state of the University does not befit a Petroleum University that
prides itself as number one in Africa and sixth in the world as there
are no infrastructures to promote learning and
research.

Prof. Etu-Efeotor, therefore, solicited for
generous donations to build infrastructures that would accommodate the
various colleges and research facilities as well as recreational
centres.

According to him, Nigeria should be the hub
of oil/gas training for other African countries by making FUPRE a true
centre of global excellence in terms of infrastructure and learning if
the model shown to the guests were achieved in a short time
frame.

Appreciating the guests, the Chairman of FUPRE
Endowment Committee, Sen. Victor Kassim Isa-Oyofo, commended the guests
for honouring the invitation of the University and assured that the
event was just the beginning of the effort to ensure funds are attracted
to build the University and put Effurun, the host of the University in a
global map.

He acknowledged the singular effort of
Sen. Emmanuel Aguariavwodo for pledging to take-up the construction of
the University Main Gate as part of his constituency projects, stressing
that a more concerted effort would be put in to ensure funds are
attracted to build a befitting University of Petroleum.