Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike has said that River State indigenes who got scholarships to read medicine will be made to sign a bond to serve the State after graduation before they can venture outside.
He said such scholarship beneficiaries would not be allowed to seek employment outside the State until they had mandatorily served Rivers for a number of years.
Though he did not specify the number of years such persons will be bonded, Wike emphasised that the policy would enable the state government reap the benefit of investing considerable resources in the training of its medical students.
Governor Wike stated this at the inauguration of a 500-bed capacity hostel for Rivers State University (RSU) medical students.
The project is situated within the premises of the faculties of Basic Clinical Sciences and Clinical Sciences of RSU in Port Harcourt.
The Rivers State governor told the students that a new policy had evolved concerning the scholarships offered to medical students by the state government.
The policy, he explained, will require any students who want to benefit from the State government scholarship will be required to sign to a condition of serving the State for some years after graduation.
“What we have decided to do now because let us not train these children, and they run away. They must serve the State first. So, we are bringing up a policy that if we give scholarships to you and train you to become a doctor, you must have some years; you must also serve the State.”
Governor Wike said it would be unfair to spend such a huge sum of money on training medical students and lose them almost immediately upon graduation to other States or countries. The governor asserted they will have to contribute quality service and add value to the medical sector in the State to justify the investment on them.
Governor Wike also assured that all outstanding scholarship expenses would be paid to the institution before he leaves office.
Governor Wike said he is happy to have accomplished the feat for Rivers State University, and their medical students now have the best hostel facilities that will contribute to academic excellence.
Describing the project, Rivers State Commissioner for Special Projects, Deinma Iyalla, said it was flagged off on 8th December 2022 and completed in 6 months.
He said two blocks of three-storey buildings were remodelled while one was freshly built with a 500-bed capacity.
In his address, the Rivers State Commissioner for Education, Prof. Chinedum Mmom, recalled that it was when the Basic Clinical Sciences and Clinical Sciences Faculties were inaugurated that the promise to build the 500-bed hostel was made, which has now been fulfilled graciously.
The governor later proceeded to the main campus of Rivers State University to inaugurate the newly constructed senior staff quarters, and as a mark of appreciation for his enormous contribution to the development of the University, Justice Iche Ndu (Rtd) announced that the management of the institution had named the Senate building after Governor Nyesom Ezenwo Wike.