By Usman Alabi
There are controversies as regards the N500 million Chibok school funds. The former President Goodluck Jonathan initiated the Safe School Initiative programme after the abduction of the Chibok girls.
Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, former Minister of Finance had flown to Chibok to inaugurate the N500 million rebuilding project in the school
The new school was expected to have a state of the art library, laboratory, a computer and ICT Centre, a sports arena and a clinic. Yet two years after the project was inaugurated, the project is still a figment of imagination, hence questioning if the funds was actually released in the first place, or probably misappropriated, as students of the school remained at home.
Gov Kashim Shettima addressing villages in Chibok town on Monday lamented how the misfortune of the people had become a money-making venture for some group of people. The governor called out the contractor handling the project demanding an investigation of the money released because the school had remained in a state of disrepair since the abduction of the girls.
It is unbelievable that we do not consider any venture in Nigeria as sacred when it comes to corruption. Corruption is pervasive and every aspect of our lives and economy has been perforated by it. Those responsible for this act should be brought to book. Because the implication of this truncation in the project is that the girls who attend the school are unable to continue with their education and most of them are at home, thus complicating their social condition and that of their environment.
One would have expected that the kidnapping of the more than 200 girls which vividly indicates the failure of government would have pricked the policy makers forcing them to embark on social re-engineering by restoring the confidence the people have in government, through rebuilding the school in the shortest possible time, thus eclipsing the sordid memory of the Kidnap. But rather than that the school still remains standing as an unforgettable symbol of the painful and avoidable kidnap.
It is important that the present administration track the N500 million funds, and bring joy to the Chibok community by rebuilding the school. The very singular act of the Chibok girls kidnap had brought international attention to that small community, and virtually everywhere in the world, the Chibok community is known, this is more than enough reason to be serious about the rebuilding of the school and bring it to international standard.
Tracking the fund should be a priority of the government, not only this, this is especially important if the goal of rebuilding the school must be met. In fact the present administration has no choice than to exorcise that memory from the community and give them the best when it comes to building a new school.