Ex-minister, two National Assembly members bicker over petroleum varsity bill

Ex-minister, two National Assembly members bicker over petroleum varsity bill

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A former minister of education, Chief Kenneth Gbagi, has taken on two members of the National Assembly over claims that they originated the Federal University of Petroleum, Effurun, Delta State, Bill recently signed into law.
Consequently, Gbagi, the lawmaker representing Delta Central Senatorial District in the Senate, Chief Ovie Omo-Agege and the member representing Sapele/Okpe/Uvwie in the House of Representatives, Hon. Evelyn Oboro, are now at loggerheads over the matter.
Initially, the face-off over the bill recently assented to by President Muhammadu Buhari for the establishment of FUPRE, was between Omo-Agege and Oboro.
Gbagi has, however, joined the fray over who should take the credit for FUPRE’s creation and establishment.
While Gbagi is now laying claim to the fact that the university only came into being after his “memo” on its creation was forwarded to the Federal Executive Council while he was serving as the minister of education, Senator Omo-Agege and Hon. Oboro, respectively, have stuck to their guns, insisting that they initiated the bill for the establishment of the institution.
Gbagi argued that it was the responsibility of the Federal Executive Council to establish a university on the presentation of a “Memo” to council by the minister of education and not that of any member of the National Assembly.
According to him, the legal framework, which the institution needed after former President Olusegun Obasanjo released funds for its takeoff as a college, through the efforts of the late Senator Fred Ayo Brume, was his handiwork as the minister of education.
Though Gbagi’s argument is at variance with those of Omo-Agege and Oboro, who have individually been claiming to have initiated the “bill” establishing the institution, the former minister maintained that no university could come into existence without a FEC approval, which he fought for while in office.
He insisted that the “memo,” which created the institution, was codenamed with his initials “KO”, insisting that a senator and a House of Representatives member (referring to Omo-Agege and Oboro) were not vested with the responsibility of establishing a university.
The former minister, therefore, argued that the two National Assembly members could not take the credit for the establishment of FUPRE.
Gbagi said, “It pleased God that on my thirty-second day (32nd) as Minister of Education, I presented a memo to the Federal Executive Council and wherein Council approved the creation of the university.”

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