BAYELSA STATE VIEWS EDUCATION AS ONE OF ITS MOST CRITICAL SOLUTION TO SUSTAINABLE NON-OIL DRIVEN ECONOMIC GROWTH. THUS, THE GOVERNMENT SEEKS INVESTORS TO BRIDGE ANY DEFICIT IN THIS SECTOR.
SUMMARY OF KEY OPPORTUNITIES:
There are opportunities for private sector participation as well as partnership with the State Government for the growth and development of this sector. Priority areas in the education sector include:-
- Management of State owned schools
- Management of State owned technical and vocational specialised training facilities
- Development of specialised training facilities
- Building of schools
HISTORY OF EDUCATION IN BAYELSA:
On assumption of office, the current administration declared a state of emergency in the education sector and pronounced a policy of “free and compulsory primary and secondary education in the state”. This welcome development necessitated a budgetary provision for the 2012 fiscal year alone of N21 billion (representing about 10% of total budget) and in subsequent years, such budgetary provision has been provided for. The Restoration Government acted on its determination to change the educational climate in the state by ensuring the construction of new model schools in each senatorial district, renovation of existing ones, training and retraining of academic and non-academic staff, and the provision of scholarship funds to deserving citizens, and much more.
There are several educational institutions in the State:
- Primary Schools: over 537
- Basic Junior Secondary Schools : public and private over 152
- Several Senior Secondary Schools
- One state owned university (Niger Delta University)
- Federal Owned university (Otueke) :1
- State owned College of Education :1
- Federal Government owned Polytechnic (Ekewe) :1
- State owned School of Nursing (Tombia) :1
- State owned School of Health Technology (Otuogidi) :1
ITEMIZED SECTORAL OPPORTUNITIES:
- DEVELOPMENT OF SCIENCE/ICT/TECHNICAL INSTITUTIONS
- REGENERATION AND BUILDING OF EXISTING AND NEW SCHOOLS
- EQUIPING OF SCHOOLS
- TRAINING OF ACADEMIC AND NON ACADEMIC STAFF
CURRENT INVESTOR-LED EDUCATION PROJECTS ONGOING IN THE STATE:
STRATEGIES FOR EDUCATION DEVELOPMENT:
- -Adoption of a PPP Model – The Government recognises that large-scale investments in the education sector will have significant catalytic effects in generating economic growth, new revenue streams through increased local manpower skills to meet the needs of a growing diversified economy. The Government is willing to invest public money in these projects if it is necessary to attract additional investments to the State. To support these investments the Government has established a clear legal framework for PPPs that will guide creation of such agreements.
- Targeted training to fit human resource requirement of local organisation and industries.
- Focus on foundational level of training
- Using ICT in improving learning capacity
- Facilitate lifelong learning
INVESTMENT MODELS SOUGHT:
Government is open to discussions on any of the following investment models:
- State-owned/Private Management: The State continues to own the assets but contracts out the management to a private company, with limited subsidy required from the State and freedom from political influences.
- Private investment/Joint Venture: The State and a private company jointly own the assets and also drive the management of the venture.
- Private investment/Privatization: The State Government sells off the assets of the company to a private company and manages the process of privatization.
- Guaranteed Access to adequate and efficient gas supply to provide power to all sectors.
- Formalisation of the Registration of Land.
- Electrical Infrastructure.
- Investor One Stop Shop- Providing support services including business registration, assistance with permits required for the establishment and operations of the business, immigration, property acquisition.
- Waiver of Government fees for investment agreements.
- Ease in obtaining Certificate of Occupancy
- Infrastructure support, where needed.
- Data support for feasibility studies
- Other incentives on a case by case basis
- Transparency: To improve transparency and effective government service in Bayelsa, the Government has taken steps to entrench transparency and accountability in governance in the State. Some of the initiatives include the Bayelsa Economic Transparency Initiative (BETI) to address revenue management, contracting and programme implementation, to ensure transparency in financial and other transactions in the state. The Due Process Bureau to ensure transparency in government contracts. The creation of the Bayelsa State Income and Expenditure Transparency Bill 2012 which demands all State income and expenditure to be made public. Others include the Government Compulsory Savings Bill 2012 and the Bayelsa State Fiscal Responsibility (Amendment) Bill 2012.
- Security: Bayelsa state is host to 3 defence bases; the Naval Base, the Air Force Tactical Command and the Joint Task Force on Security. In addition to the national efforts, the Bayelsa State Government has created and institutionalised the very strategic state level joint force called Doo Akpo. This security initiative boasts 100 police cars, 300 police and 200 army officers, with GPS maintained systems.
- Community Relations: The State Government will assist in the mediation between communities and investors on all issues as relevant.
- Human Capacity and cottage industry capacity: Thanks to the vibrant state scholarship scheme in collaboration with carious global top flight institutions, and other institutions of academic and vocational learning, investors can easy partner with local industry to deliver services, and also find supportive skills and knowledge base to sustain their investments and the State’s development efforts.
- Favourable tax regimes and incentives for priority areas
- Commitment to accelerated development of infrastructure
- Clear Public Private Partnership (PPP) framework
- Legislative and Legal Framework – Established legal systems based on English common law, Government adherence to rule of law and adherence with bilateral and international agreements on the settlement of investment disputes.
- Improved Land Administration: Streamlined procedures and fast track path for priority areas.
- Stable and Secure socio-political environment: Balance and harmony between the 3 arms of government; Executive, Legislative and Judiciary resulting in seamless passing of needful investment friendly policies and legislation.
The Bayelsa Investment Promotion Agency (BIPA) on behalf of the Government informs investors that the Government is seeking potential investors for joint ventures in the education sector.
The Bayelsa Investment Promotion Agency (BIPA) will undertake the joint venture or privatisation of Bayelsa’s education opportunities. Investors interested in the educational opportunities should note the following roadmap for the investments:
- Marketing of the tourism and hospitality investment opportunities among a number of relevant investors;
- Distribution of Bayelsa Education Investor Book that outlines the key parameters for the transaction and request letters of interest from investors/investor groups;
- Invitation of most promising investors to conduct their independent due diligence of the education facilities;
- Convening evaluation (tender) committee consisting of key stakeholders to select preferred bidder and reserve bidder;
- Engagement in negotiations and appoint winning bidder to commence project development (sign PPM/contract).
- After selection, enter contract negotiations with Bayelsa;
- Work closely with the Bayelsa State Investment Promotion Agency to understand the wider set of available investment opportunities; and
- Invest in Bayelsa State.