Cross River Governor, Prof Ben Ayade, has instituted a N100million research grant with a charge on the state university, Cross River State University of Technology (CRUTECH) to invent a technology that can generate electricity from micro and minor water resources, particularly boreholes and underground water.
Ayade disclosed this while speaking as a visitor at the 6th to 10th combined convocation ceremony of the university in Calabar.
â€œI want us to carry out a research on how to generate electricity from our boreholes. I want every single borehole sunk in Cross River to be converted to a source of electricity. I want you to challenge me on how through a dehydrogenation process you can switch hydrogen from water and get that hydrogen molecule to drive turbines,â€ Ayade urged.
The governor who believes that research works are very simple in character and approach, said: â€œI want to put an end to support the University in areas other than research. I want to set aside on behalf of the government of Cross River, a research sum of N100 million which will be set up and chaired here in Cross River State University of Technology.â€
Emphasising the need to put an end to the dependence on foreign technologies, Ayade rhetorically asked: â€œWhy would Africans continue to rely on the western world? Why would Africans who by nature of what God has given to us as the richest and wealthiest continent remain in darkness? Where are the professors and what do we profess, what do we reflect and teach with no instrumentality of our research?â€
Continuing, the governor queried: â€œHow long can we continue to parade ourselves as university professors with very little to profess, how long can we continue to show the classrooms as example of our progress without showing the research inventions and technologies that are being acknowledged as products of this school?
â€œWe therefore, must not continue to rely on the challenges of finance to justify the failure of research and teaching in a university.
â€œApply this N100 million, and if it becomes necessary for me to add, I shall add and you know I will.â€
While urging the university to rise to the challenge, he said at the next convocation he expects â€œto see at the centre of this school, would be an invention, perhaps a car, an aeroplane, but whatever it is, letâ€™s get started.â€
CRUTECH Vice Chancellor, Prof Anthony Owan Enoh, revealed that the combined convocation was witnessing the formal graduation of 6,632 first degrees from the institutionsâ€™ seven faculties of agriculture and forestry, basic medical sciences, communication technology, education, engineering, environmental sciences as well as management sciences and sciences.
Owan Enoh also intimated: â€œOut of this number, 19 bagged First Class, 1609 passed with Second Class (Upper Division), 4994 made Second Class(Lower Division), 1104 earned Third Class and 10 earned Pass,â€ adding that â€œa total of 293 students graduated at the postgraduate faculty from engineering, management sciences, education, communication technology and environmental sciences at both the postgraduate diploma and Masters Degrees.â€
The VC also said: â€œThe two doctoral students who could have been added but could not, due to the chequered school year we have had to contend with. They have completed all conditions but the university could not accelerate the process just for this purpose in its firm belief in maintaining the high standards required at that level.â€
The event featured the installation of paramount ruler of Obudu, Uti Joseph Davies Agba, as the second Chancellor of the university and the conferment of the degree of Doctor of Arts History (Honoris Causa) on him.
Also confered with honorary degrees were former governor of Kaduna State and National PDP Chairman, Senator Ahmed Makarfi as Doctor of Business Administration (Honoris Causa) and governor of Bayelsa, Henry Seriake Dickson, bagging Doctor of Environmental Management (Honoris Causa).