From Chidi Asonye, Umuahia
Rector, Abia State Polytechnic Aba, Professor Ezionye Eboh has described the Covid19 pandemic as perilous even as he has stated that the approach by the institution’s authority in cancelling academic activities was life saving without which nothing would have halted its planed Convocation, Matriculation as well as other important activities lined up for the institution before the pandemic went haywire.
According to Prof. Eboh
the stay away from classes order may last from between two weeks to one month just as he disclosed that Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu has graciously directed that lecturers of the institution engage students on online tutorials for the period of the impromptu vacation.
In the words of the Rector, the school had to shielve its matriculation as well convocation ceremony because of the scourge. He described the Covid19 pandemic as perilous stating that the approach by the institution’s authority is life saving without which nothing would have halted its planed Convocation, Matriculation as well as the other important activities lined up at the institution before the pandemic went haywire.
“Nothing else would have pushed us into all these because in the next two weeks we ought to be conducting our Matriculation ceremony, the NBTE is scheduled to be here for the accreditation of our disciplines. We are planning our Convocation and all that. Nothing else would have pushed us into cancellation of academic activities but because lives are involved, we have no other choice” he stated, assuring that immediately the scourge is brought under control all programmes of the polytechnic as originally planned will be revisited so that nothing will be left unachieved in the academic year.
Prof. Eboh tasked his students and indeed the general public to observe all protection tips at this perilous moment just as he advised that all restrict their movements excepts the reason for stepping out becomes expedient, advising, ” You can use the time to organize academic papers, you can do online teaching and research with your students, you can tidy one academic work or the other.
“If there are scripts or results you are yet to tidy up its an opportunity. So there are many things for us to lock ourselves in. We have to learn how to turn disadvantages to advantages and that’s what the ocassion calls for. For the students, it’s time to read, exams are near. it’s time to read and concentrate and stay indoors. It’s not the season for partying. Those ones are risky business for anyone to do now”. Rector Eboh had posited.
Recall that th Polytechnic, had suspended academic activities in the institution owing to the ravaging Corona virus a couple of days ago and according to a Press Release signed by the Registrar of the Polytechnic, Mrs. Comfort Nwabughuogu and dated 22nd March, students were directed to vacate the institution’s campus without further delay.
The release had advised all students of the institution to curtail their movements as well as adhere strictly to the guideline of the World Health Specification, Federal and State Governments on Covid19 during the period of the vacation to be safe from contamination.
In a memo also issued by the office of the Registrar to the the Polytechnic Community a day after, and titled : Suspension of Activities in Abia State Polytechnic, the governing authorities of the institution had approved the suspension of all activities in the campus till further notice due to Covid19 pandemic.
The memo had asked staff of the institution to vacate the premises with effect from 25th of the month except the Head of Departments on essential services who should nominate those to be on skeletal services.
When our reporter visited the institution, activities of of teaching and learning have stopped abruptly even as the students population had gone down as most of them had adhered to the directives of the governing authorities of the institution.