By Ikechukwu Odu
NSUKKA—-The Vice Chancellor, VC, of the Enugu State University of Science and Technology, ESUT, Professor Aloysius-Michaels Okolie, has said that the institution will become major supplier of palm oil and pawpaw in Enugu State.
The VC explained that every arrangement has been concluded with a consultancy firm to plant at least 2,000 seedlings of hybrid palm which would begin to produce fruits in the next two years.
He made the disclosure, weekend, at the Agbani Campus of the University, where he equally said that the institution would also plant at least 1,000 hybrid pawpaw trees in order to export the produce and generate income for the school.
He urged university managements to think out of the box to shore-up economically due to the continued poor funding of tertiary institutions in the country.
“We will create a space where we will plant 2,000 seedlings of hybrid palm. In two or three years, each of them would produce six to seven palm heads. Because we are looking for resources for ESUT, let us begin to think of how we can generate income in short, medium and long terms.
“Before the next two to three years, ESUT would have a processing plant for the palm plantation so that we can begin to supply oil to Enugu State and beyond.
“We are equally discussing with another consultant to plant at least 1,000 hybrid pawpaw trees. Each of the trees would be capable of producing at least 20 fruits per a cycle. Other universities are already exporting it and ESUT, with large expanse of land can’t be watching,” he said.
The VC equally frowned at the attitude of absentee lecturers in the institution, adding that the Registrar ESUT, Ambrose Ugwu, had been communicated to take appropriate action against the defaulting lecturers.
He equally said that plans are on to construct an asphalted pavilion and a Senate Building in the institution.