The Minister of Transportation, Mr. Rotimi Amaechi, has mandated the concessionaire of Dala Inland Dry Port in Kano to establish a primary school in the community, ahead of the commissioning in December.
Amaechi said this at the opening ceremony of the 16th National Council on Transportation held in Kano.
According to him, during his last visit to the port, so many children were running after the convoy, indicating that they are out of school.
He, therefore, directed the Nigerian Shippers Council to meet with the concessionaire to ensure that this was achieved, as a Corporate Social responsibility, before the commissioning.
“The last time I was there, he assured me that he would build a primary school in the community, free of charge.
“The Permanent Secretary confirmed to me that the school is under construction; by December, we will commission both the school and the port.
“It is not enough to build the school, we must see teachers and students in the school.
“We will not commission the Dry Port except we see teachers in the school and am going to ask the students if they are paying fees.
“If they say no, then I will commission. I have told him not to charge school fees, which is the agreement we have with him.
“I want Shippers Council to note this because that is the agreement we have with him.
“You can charge whatever you want to charge at the port, but part of the profit should go to the upbringing of those children.
“I have always said that if you don’t provide for the poor, the poor will provide for themselves and when they provide for themselves, you will not sleep.
“So Shippers Council should see to the agreement, the payment of the teachers and see to the process of admitting the students into the school,” Amaechi said.
In his remarks, the Executive Secretary of the council, Mr. Emmanuel Jime confirmed that he had visited the port and construction was ongoing.
According to him, the school will be ready by November, before the commissioning.
“I really want to commend the wisdom of the honourable minister on this position.
“It is clear to me that, at the end, when corporate social responsibility is executed in the way that benefits the immediate community where facilities such as the Dry port is located, it benefits everyone.
“Don’t forget, unless and until we get the immediate communities to benefit from amenities that are introduced in our communities, you are likely going to have an insecurity situation on your hands.
“That will make it challenging for those facilities to function,” Jime said.