Chairman of Bi-Courtney Group, Dr Wale Babalakin, has urged the people of Osun to collaborate with the government to develop the state.
Babalakin spoke yesterday at the coronation of the Oluwo of Iwo, Oba Abdul Rasheed Adewale Akanbi.
As chairman of the occasion, the erudite lawyer, hailed Iwo people for choosing a very educated and exposed king through a rancour-free process.
His words: “We have a big challenge in Osun. I don’t believe there’s any state with as many cities as Osun in Nigeria. This places a great challenge on us to utilize our population and diversity to our advantage.”
Babalakin urged the people to work with the government to harness Osun’s potentials.
At the event were Governor Rauf Aregbesola of the state; his deputy, Mrs Titi Laoye-Tomori; former Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola and the Ooni of Ife, Oba Enitan Ogunwusi, among others.
Meanwhile, Osun State House of Assembly has called on the new Oluwo of Iwoland to ensure peaceful coexistence, community development, security and improved economy not only for the people of the town but also the entire state.
The Assembly made the call yesterday in a statement issued by the Chairman, House Committee on Information and Strategy, Olatunbosun Oyintiloye, to congratulate the monarch on his coronation and presentation of staff of office.
Oba Abdul-Rasheed assumed the throne about three years after the demise of his predecessor, the late Oba Asiru Olatunbosun Tadese, who died on February 18, 2013.
The Assembly which stressed that Iwo is known for cattle rearing and abattoir management, urged the monarch to promote the venture and modernise it. It also urged him to explore landmarks and tourism potentials in the ancient town.
Chairman of Bi-Courtney Group, Dr Wale Babalakin, has urged the people of Osun to collaborate with the government to develop the state.
The pioneer National Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief Adebisi Akande has warned the striking doctors, lecturers and other unions in the State of Osun to be careful on their various agitations before the state government saying that should they allow the state or government to collapse; there would be nothing to fall back to.
Chief Akande who spoke while fielding questions from newsmen at his country home, Ila-Orangun during his 77th birthday celebration at the weekend said that the economy of the state cannot meet all the demands and agitations that the doctors, civil servants, lecturers and other organized bodies.
He cautioned them to be careful on their demands and agitations stressing that “when the economy is too weak to sustain Osun, the governor will go away, the commissioners will go away, all the civil servants will go away, all the doctors will go away, everybody will go away because there will be nothing to sit by anymore.
Chief Akande who was Governor of the state between 1999 and 2003 declared that that the current economic problem crisis in the state is not the making of the governor or the present administration but that of the crash of the oil prices at the international market.
He stated what behooves of the stakeholders in the state was to cooperate with the government on how to move the state out of the current economic crisis rather than making unnecessary agitations that could not be met by the government.
According to him, “though I lives in Osun, I will say I don’t know much as to the making of the government but I see a lot of boldness in the plan of the present government about Osun, the plan was very bold and commendable and if fully implemented can turn Osun into an Eldorado. Unfortunately, the economy collapsed along the line and if the economy collapses and you don’t have a way of getting it right quickly, it might lead even to the merging of Osun state with another because when you are not viable, there is nothing you can do.
“The situation here is just like a bank that goes bankrupt, all the staff would have to scatter, the manager will go away, when the economy is too weak to sustain Osun, the governor will go away, the commissioners will go away, all the civil servants will go away, all the doctors will go away, everybody will go away because there will be nothing to sit by anymore and that is why the crisis is no problem of the governor, it is the problem of everybody.
“Some six months ago, I said Osun state was not a viable state and I meant it when I said so. A state that cannot generate enough money within itself to pay its own way is not a viable. A state that is waiting for the federal government’s allocation to run, the moment that money did not come, that state is finished and where does the federal government gets money?- it is from crude oil and nobody is buying it anymore from us, even when you get the crude oil, our customers are no longer coming. Before, they pay three months in advance, but today, they don’t even come to ask how much we sell it.
“Whether the price is down or goes up, until you sell crude oil, you can’t make any money and if there is no money, there will be no state. If the federal government like, it may save Osun state and we have to beg them to please save Osun state to survive, if those working in the state cannot see that, and they begin to jump and stamp the ground, “we no go gree”, by the time they are stamping the ground, the ground will cave under their feet and there won’t be doctors again, there won’t be civil servants again, there won’t be commissioners again and there won’t be governor again and there will be nobody to march against until you know that the foundation of any state is the economy and that the economy is already crashing, the question you ask now, you will see that it is just like touching the leaf and not the root of a tree.
It would be recalled that doctors at Lautech Teaching Hospital, state hospitals and academic and none academic staff of the state owned institutions have been on protests and strike over some demands bordering on their welfare.
Pictures of the Governor State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, presenting the staff of office to the new Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba Abdul Rasheed Adewale Akanbi, at the Reality Television Station Premises in Iwo on Saturday 16-01-2016
The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has charged the new Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba Abdul-Rasheed Adewale Akanbi on the need to jettison self-aggradisement, primitive and insatiable appetite for wealth accumulation and as well explore his coveted position to entrench unity among yorubas as he begins to pilot the affairs of the ancient town.
Governor Aregbesola admonished the new monarch to lead by example and explore every opportunity and privilege at his disposal to bring in all round development.
Governor Aregbesola gave the admonition while presenting the Staff of Office and Instrument of Appointment to the newly installed Oluwo of Iwoland at the coronation ceremony in the ancient town.
The ancient town was however stood still for hours as the sons and daughters of the town enthusiastically trooped out en masse and besieged the venue where the coronation took place.
Addressing the residents of the town, Governor Aregbesola who titled his speech “A new dawn in Iwoland” commended the people of the town especially the kingmakers and the princes of all the ruling houses for embracing peace, unity and cohesion before, during and after the installation of their new monarch.
Aregbesola who implored the new traditional ruler to see monarchy and kingship as a thing that naturally comes from God with certain privileges, saying a good monarch must rule with the fear of God, wisdom and as well convert privileges to resources of governance.
He enjoined the monarch to avoid the pitfall of turning privileges into avenues for self-aggradizement, adding that a good monarch must also be a unifying person and must never constitute a divisive agent.
Governor Aregbesola advocated for peace and unity among yorubas, saying the time has come for all the yoruba traditional rulers to extend love and compassion to one another and as well promote the peaceful co-habitation among the yorubas home and abroad.
He said, “The coming of His Royal Highness, Oba Akanbi, is at a time of renewed drive at Yoruba unity, solidarity and development.
“This has become a strong rallying cry since the enthronement of the Ooni of Ife, more than a month ago. It is my sincere wish that you take a front seat on this train.
“Occupying a position of leadership is God-ordained and carries a great responsibility with it. People look up to the leader for direction, protection and sustenance.
“You must provide these for them. More importantly, you must lead by example. Leadership naturally comes with certain privileges, but a good leader must convert privileges to resources of governance.
“You must therefore avoid the pitfall of turning privileges into avenues for self-aggrandisement and primitive accumulation.
“You must rule with wisdom and fear of God. The people over whom you preside are diverse politically, ideologically, temperamentally, socially and by moral disposition.
“Not all of them will readily agree with you and many of them will say or do things you will consider abhorrent. But they are all your subjects and you are required to preside over them with tact and wisdom in a way that will enable you to get the best out of them.
“A leader must also be a unifying person and must never constitute a divisive agent. There are two kings whose reign the Yoruba never forget. These are the king whose reign is peaceful and the one whose reign is characterized by turmoil and scattering. May your reign be peaceful and usher in prosperity for the people in the realm.
Governor Aregbesola who approved the appointment of Oba Abdul-Rasheed Adewale Akanbi as the Oluwo of Iwo on Monday 9th November, 2015, said the stool would have even been filled earlier but for the plethora of court cases on it his administration had to allow the rule to take its normal course.
He stressed further, “it is our believe that closure has been brought to the contest for this stool by the distinguished and honourable princes of Iwo as we have felt the wind of peace and unity with the hope that everyone had allowed the peace to reign.
“Iwo is fortunate to have Oba Akanbi as king. He is young, well-educated and cosmopolitan. He brings with him to the throne a wealth of experience from his many travels and exposure to the world as he had lived in developed and well organised societies in Europe and North America and no doubt will lead Iwo on the path of accelerated development.
“Oba Akanbi will be occupying the throne of a city that has a rich history behind it.
“I congratulate Oba Akanbi and the people of Iwo for a new dawn in this town and environ. It is our collective prayer that the Almighty will grant him long life and his tenure will usher Iwo into renewed wealth, prosperity, multiplication, good health and peace.
Governor Aregbesola used the avenue of the occasion to implore the people of the state to support his administration through prompt tax payment, adding that the primary way a people demonstrate loyalty to the state is by supporting it through payment of tax.
Aregbesola said the era of gigantic revenues from the Federation Accounts has gone, thus calls for the need for all and sundry to rise towards rescuing themselves from the adverse effects of the current economic situation.
The Governor said in view of achieving desired goals and objectives, traditional rulers must be a ready-hands in mobilize the people to participate in their own development by taking every advantage of opportunities that will come from time to time and to support the government by obeying the laws of the land and prompt payment of taxes.
According to him, “Taxation is the heartbeat of any government. The primary way a people demonstrate loyalty to the state is by supporting it through payment of tax.
“Therefore, cardinal objective of our administration is to bring accelerated development to our communities, but to achieve this, the traditional rulers are in a good position to mobilize the people to participate in their own development by taking every advantage of opportunities that will come from time to time and to support the government by obeying the laws of the land and prompt payment of taxes.
“Though we have neglected this in the past largely because we were getting free money from the Federation Account.
“With the precipitous fall in oil price, an end has come to this and by necessity, we must earn our own money, if we must tide over this special and challenging time.
Aregbesola therefore called on the residents especially the youths to be more productive and showcase interest by participating massively in farming, saying agriculture remains the only alternative, sustainable and imperishable means of living.
“Every able-bodied person, most importantly the youths and school leavers, must be productively engaged, especially in farming.
“Our administration is rolling out a new programme with huge incentives for all interested persons to participate in farming, in a way that will make them rich and yield huge revenues to the government”, Aregbesola said.
In his address, the Chairman of the occasion, Dr. Wale Babalakin commended the people of Iwo for allowing peace to reign before, during and after the installation of the new monarch.
Dr. Wale Babalakin who also lauded Governor Aregbesola for climbing the ladder of progress in the discharge of his constitutional responsibilities in the state, said the state government’s resolve in choosing Oba Akanbi is a round peg in the round hole.
According to him, Osun is a state being blessed with very notable big cities, though it is great asset but also a great challenge on the state government, traditional rulers and other authorities to utilize their population, strength, wealth, diversity, intellectual capacity at their disposal for the betterment of all.
“I congratulate the people of Iwo for cooperating extensively in installing a new king without any sense of rancour.
“The sons and daughters of this town have chosen their monarch in a very matured way and by extension an excellent, educated, well exposed, illustrious, industrious as a new king.
“There will be challenges before you, but with your resolution and commitment, you shall overcome while this coronation will equally mark the beginning of a great resolution.
“As our king start to pilot the affairs of your native town, God will turn your troubled roads to stopping stones for the attainment of greater heights”, Dr. Babalakin stated.
Earlier in his welcome address, the Executive Secretary, Iwo Local Government, Hon. Kamorudeen Olabisi Alao urged the residents of the ancient town to cooperate with the new monarch in order to facilitate rapid socio-economic and infrastructural development of the town.
Hon. Alao who described the occasion as auspicious, momentous and much awaited extolled Governor Aregbesola for his high sense of mediation, wise intervention and prompt leadership action towards traditional institution which resulted to what he called speedy manner in which the candidacy of Prince Abdul-Rasheed Adewale Akanbi was approved as the new Oluwo of Iwoland by the state government.
He commended the people of the state on their high sense of maturity being exhibited during the selection process of the new traditional ruler, saying their peaceful conduct and sense of unity would be forever acknowledged.
He said, “the people of Iwo especially princes of the ruling houses have really accorded us wonderful and unprecedented cooperation and this had resulted to seamless selection process.
“Though the contest for the vacant stool was full of many anxious moments for our administration but mercifully, at our behest, all the ruling houses decided to bury their hatchets in order for peace and progress to reign supreme.
In his goodwill message, the Asiwaju of Iwoland, Barrister Adedeji Gbadegesin commended Governor Aregbesola for his timely approval of the appointment of the new Oluwo, saying his noble action has rescued the town from unnecessary protracted royal interregnum.
“I commend our Governor for liberating us out of the royal bondage that would have tormented us for years. The timely approval of the appointment of the new Oluwo of Iwoland, thus saving our people the trauma of having to wait for years as was the case in the past.
He lamented over what he regarded as backwardness in the town, saying Iwo has witnessed a gradual but remarkable slow-down in its march to greatness in the last one hundred years in spite the fact that Iwoland has an enviable record of loyalty and commitment to progressive causes.
He said, “It is in our character in Iwo to always partner with all lawful authorities and progressive causes but it is unfortunate that the town is nearly forgot in the area of development.
“To this regard, the glaring mismatch or disconnect between our loyalty and commitment and the rewards is overdue for reappraisal and redress.
Barrister Gbadegesin therefore advocated for more cooperation with the current governments at local, state and federal for all round development, progress and transformation.
He called on the indigenes of the town to rally round the new monarch for general success, saying no community ever achieves its potentials with the level of division, bile and acrimony.
Barrister Gbadegesin implored the new monarch to see his ascendancy as a challenge to turn around the town for the betterment of all.
“This is the time for all and sundry to demonstrate our unflinching supports, cooperation and love to our new monarch as unity will stand and divided will for.
“To our brand new monarch, your ascent to the throne of your forefathers is a period of challenges and great expectation among our people.
“With love and cooperation in all fronts we hope and pray that your reign will bring the best and brightest of all things positive, peace, prosperity, life more abundant as we fervently believed that your rein would in no doubt go a long way to bring the desired transformation not only to Iwoland but to the State of Osun and Nigeria at large.
In their separate remarks, the President of Iwo Board of Trustees, Otunba Abdulganiy Adebayo Aremu, President of Nigerian Association of Young/Adult in Canada, commended Governor Aregbesola for choosing the right person for the town.
The duo expressed confidence in the new king that his reign will bring the desired peace, unity, peace, security, prosperity and joy which the town has been yearning for over the years.
They charged the new monarch to use the advantage of his position to bringing- in to the town the foreign investors, captain of industries, business men and women, traders, manufacturers among others for sustainable growth and development.
In his congratulatory message, the new Oluwo of Iwoland, Oba Abdul-Rasheed Adewale Akanbi expressed profound gratitude to Governor Rauf Aregbesola, Government and people of Osun especially the Iwo Kingmakers for giving him the opportunity to steer the affairs of the ancient town.
The new Oluwo who advocated for the promotion of local products and commodities said his coming to the throne of his forefathers will leave no stone unturned to ensure total reawakening and promotion of local products.
Oba Akanbi who promised to take Iwo to a height never known in history said one of his plans to achieve immense successes would be a greater focus on the promotion of local goods especially the farm produce as the nation is traversing to agriculture.
He said it is misnomer and uncalled for, a situation where a country deems fit to import what it could produce, saying any act of ignoring local products leads to unnecessary inflation which according to him has been the case in Nigeria.
Oba Akanbi further advocated for the official utilization of Adire fabric (batik attire) as school uniforms, police uniforms, soldiers uniforms among others, saying if this is being promoted locally, Nigerian Textile would in no doubt earn huge revenues as this would also be encouraged and exported.
“My advocacy for the return to our roots, is a rationale to the urgent need of improving our economy, social and political well being of our people.
“I am bent to take Iwo to a height never known in history by exploring all our given potentials for the upliftment and betterment of all.
“I will serve my people on the path of righteousness and place Iwo among the community of great cities in the world.
“My dogged pursue of the economic liberation of our people will premise on the massive utilization of our local materials for greater production that will encourage massive exportation.
“I will encourage the use of batik (Adire attire) to promote our culture, values and traditions as yoruba race and as well translate into our economic benefits and advantage.
“I will not stop until this is realizable and the government adopts the use of batik fabric as school uniforms and security uniforms as this will create employment opportunity and wealth generation”, Oluwo stated.
Oba Akanbi therefore canvassed for support from all and sundry especially his co-contenders, saying his palace will be always opened for beautiful ideas, brainstorming and deliberation.
He equally called on the people in the town to support the current government by paying their taxes regularly.
In its quest to eradicate clashes between herdsmen and host community, the Government of Osun has called on all herdsmen in the state to be very vigilant and report any immigrant that may bring animals into the State to devastate and graze off the crops planted by the farmers.
The state government in a statement by the Chairman, Committee on Peaceful Co-Existence between Fulani-Bororo and Crop Farmers in the State of Osun, Hon. Toogun Mudashiru stated that night grazing by animals in the State has been banned by government.
Toogun stressed that the state government under the leadership of Governor Rauf Aregbesola is interested in the peaceful co-existence between herdsmen and crop farmers in the State, hence the banning of night grazing to forestall clashes between farmers and herdsmen.
The committee Chairman pointed out that the state committee was inaugurated to ensure the peaceful co-existence in the State thus the replication of the committee in all Local Government Councils of the State.
Toogun however advised farmers and herdsmen to desist from bush burning during the dry season, saying that bush burning is highly dangerous and should be discouraged by all.
He said, “I want to use this opportunity to inform all Bororos-Fulanis in the State of Osun that the administration of Mr Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola is very much interested in the peaceful co-existence between pastorals and crop farmers in the State.
“A State Committee was inaugurated to ensure this peaceful co-existence in the State and this committee is also replicated in all Local Government Councils of the State.
“In the light of this, all Fulanis-Bororos are advised to be very vigilant and report any immigrant that may bring animals into the State to devastate and graze off the crops planted by the farmers.
“Night grazing by animals in the State is hereby totally prohibited and anybody caught would face the wrath of law”, the committee chairman expressed.
Aregbesola Advocates A Full Week For Armed Forces Remembrance Celebrations…Condemns Embezzlement Of Arms Funds
Governor of the state of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has advocated for a full week to be set aside annually for the celebration of Nigeria’s fallen soldiers while also soliciting for the week to be called “Armed Forces Remembrance Week” instead of “Armed Forces Remembrance Day Celebrations” as it is usually called.
The governor stated this while speaking at the annual Armed Forces Remembrance Day celebrations held at the newly constructed Military Cenotaph situated at the entrance of the State House of Assembly.
The Governor who explained that the fallen heroes deserve a whole week for their remembrance emphasized that the country ought to recognize the patriotism and commitment of the fallen soldiers who accepted to die for the survival of the country, the people and the resources therein.
Ogbeni Aregbesola declared that it takes certain exceptional qualities to take up a vocation that makes someone to be a target for elimination by the enemies.
According to him” We must not just limit our recognition of the armed forces to the remembrance of the fallen heroes alone, I suggest that a whole week should be devoted every year to the armed forces and this should be called the armed forces week. A day in that week should also be set aside to honour the significance of those who have laid down their lives for the unity and existence of our nation.
“We can never overlook the fact that for anybody to enlist into the army and be ready to cross the enemy line and face death is a high measure of patriotism, commitment and high level of sacrifice.
“Of course, soldiery is a calling, just like any divine calling. Certain individuals must be imbued with certain qualities like courage, selflessness, protective instinct and a disposition to taking high risk, to be able to naturally take to soldiery.
“Humans naturally follow the least line of resistance and would take great effort at self-preservation. It takes certain qualities therefore to take up a vocation that instantly makes one a legitimate target of elimination by the enemy.
“So rather than just limit it to just those who have fallen, let ua also recognize the patriotism, commitment and dedication of all who have volunteered to die in the defence of our nation”
Governor therefore called on the appropriate authorities on the need to change the week for remembrance of the fallen heroes to armed week, while a day in that week will be set aside for remembrance nationwide.
Governor Aregbesola who commended the gallantry of nation’s security agencies, said the roles being played by the men of Nigerian Army, Navy, Immigration, Customs, Department of State Services, Police among others could not be over emphasized.
Aregbesola who described the plethora of challenges facing Nigerian security agencies especially Nigerian Soldiers as uncalled for, said the nation has grown to the stage of giving the due recognition, dignity, respect and honour to the people who laid their precious lives to savage the entire nation.
He lamented over what he regarded as undeserved maltreatment of Nigerian security agents, saying the best way to combat insecurity challenges was to put utmost smile in the faces of those who have already volunteered themselves for the service of their fatherland
Aregbesola said the present fight against insurgency has been a onerous task on the military, stressing that the only way to totally eradicate any form of insurgency was for Nigerians to support the current template of “fight against insurgency” being orchestrated by the present government of President Muhammadu Buhari.
He called on the Federal Government and other appropriate military authorities to strengthen the nation’s security agencies especially in fighting Boko Haram which he regarded as monsters that must be totally uprooted and eliminated.
He said further, “Nigerians fought brilliantly to keep the world safe in the First and Second World Wars. They also fought a very bloody civil war to keep Nigeria one. They have been involved also in peace keep missions in the troubled parts of the world and have been instrumental to supporting democracies in Africa.
“These are missions in which precious lives have been lost and in which many returned home wounded and incapacitated.
“Nigerian soldiers have been involved in defending the homeland against foreign incursions by soldiers and rebels from our neighbours and are currently engaging insurgents in especially North Eastern part of the country.
“The evil insurgents which our soldiers are facing are barbaric and nihilistic elements pretending to be fighting a religious war.
“They represents nothing but a deranged ideology of hate and a cult of death that projects nothing but the worst in humans.
“They materialize like shadows to attack communities. They will not even spare the aged, women, children, animals and crops in their barbaric assault, before they dematerialise and varnish into thin air.
“It is disconcerting therefore that our soldiers were deployed to fight these monsters without proper equipment.
The number one citizen in the state also used the occasion to bemoan the financial misappropriation of the fund set aside to procure arms for the Nigerian army in the fight against the insurgents in the North-east, saying it is an act of wickedness and gross indiscipline for anybody to engage in such gruesome act.
Aregbesola said, “My heart bleeds each time I read the report that the insurgents had ambushed our soldiers or that our military base had been attacked.
“These soldiers were deliberately put in harm’s way and practically sent on suicide missions.
“It is even a monumental scandal of unimaginable proportion that funds meant for procuring arms for soldiers are shared among members of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) without the least compunction.
Governor Aregbesola who commended President Muhammadu Buhari for his brilliant moves to unravel the heinous crime being perpetrated by those who seem to be above the board in the sector.
Aregbesola held that it is ridiculous and lugubrious for anybody to desecrate blasphemously the ethics and tradition of the military, not to talk of deliberately ambushing the gallant officers.
“I commend the efforts of President Muhammadu Buhari in unravelling this heinous crime and I sincerely hope that all those involved will receive full retribution.
“Some of the soldiers caught in the maelstrom and indicted have been pardoned but some have lost their commission while others face uncertain future.
“Considering the circumstances of this unusual event, it is pertinent that a fresh inquiry be set up so that justice will be given to all those involved and our gallant soldiers will not be punished unjustly.
Governor Aregbesola therefore advocated for prompt payment of the salary arrears of Nigerian security agents, saying it unforgivable sin for a country to owe the people who chose to protect the lives and property of their fatherland.
“Serving and retired officers’ salaries and other emoluments should be paid promptly. It is an unforgivable sin for a country to owe its veterans.
“The practice of retired soldiers blocking streets and engaging in demonstrations before getting paid is shameful.
“With computerisation, the process should be seamless and soldiers should not have any cause to sweat before collecting their entitlements. As we remember our deceased soldiers, let us remember their surviving families and the welfare of the veterans.
“Many of them need decent accommodation and medical attention. Do not let them regret choosing to defend the country to some other vocations where their welfare could have been better taken care of.
“I am also calling on the soldiers not to lose their discipline after service by engaging in self-defeating acts and criminal behaviours incompatible with fine soldiery.
“More importantly, the able-bodied among them should strive to find a gainful engagement. They should find civilian use for some of the skills they have acquired while in service. We are in a new era where every citizen must be productive and contribute to the commonwealth”, Aregbesola added.
SPEECH BY THE GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF OSUN, OGBENI RAUF AREGBESOLA, AT THE INAUGURATION OF COMMUNITY BASED MANAGEMENT COMMITTEES FOR OSUN ELEMENTARY, MIDDLE AND HIGH SCHOOLS, HELD AT GOVERNMENT TECHNICAL COLLEGE, OSOGBO, ON THURSDAY JANUARY 14
COMMUNITY OWNERSHIP OF SCHOOLS
I welcome you most sincerely to another milestone in the course of educational development in our dear state. We are assembled here to give life to community based school management committees at the elementary, middle and high schools in the State of Osun.
After holding the education summit in 2011, we have since introduced many reforms into the education sector. In line with our policy of focussing on basic education, we have reclassified schools into elementary, middle and high cadres. We produced and gave one pair of school uniform to each pupil in our public schools in order to give them a distinct identity and renewed confidence.
Before the present cash crunch, we have increased the running cost on each pupil from N200 to N400. We appointed about 3,500 fresh teachers and provided teaching aids and materials to all public schools. Then we began the feeding of over 250,000 elementary pupils with nutritious meals on every school day. We also invented the e-learning computer tablet, Opon Imo, for high school pupils in the state.
Considering that the environment must be suitable for learning, we began the construction of state of the art 100 Elementary Schools, 50 Middle Schools and 20 High Schools. We have since completed 14 Elementary, 15 Middle and 1High Schools. Others are in various stages of completion. Just on Tuesday, you will all recall, we commissioned Anthony Udofia Government Elementary School, an architectural masterpiece that has set the tone for school building, public or private, for a very long time to come.
What remains, and what we are doing today, is welding all these together into an organic whole, by putting in place an effective management system. It makes good sense to us that the best management approach is a community based one. This is not just a global practice, it is self-evident that those imbued with the right sense of ownership are in the best position to drive an organisation or process for it to be successful.
Education is critical to every society because it is an area where any society cannot afford to fail. First, it is through education that every society renews itself by integrating its new members into its past and traditions; for them to be able to properly grasp the present; and improve and secure the future. It is through education that the intellect is cultivated, character is built and an individual becomes adjusted to society. This is why after successfully passing an examination, certificates are issued to the student only after having been found ‘worthy in learning and character’. Indeed, in my schooling days, a testimonial introducing the school leaver and affirming his or her character and suitability for engagement in any endeavour is first issued before the certificate, while certificates are declined even to those who passed examinations on the ground of character.
Education is also the primary instrument of development. The knowledge that drives development is introduced to every pupil through systematised learning. While there have been geniuses and outstanding individuals who affected our world positively through creativity and innovation without acquiring formal education, the making of our world as it is today is the product of knowledge acquired though education in the sciences, technology, engineering, arts, entertainment and so on. The technology of building, architecture, automobiles, environmental engineering, medical sciences and administrative sciences are overwhelmingly acquired though education.
Education is also the primary means for leadership training and recruitment. Other things being equal, the business, political and social leaders are usually those that have acquired some form of formal education. They are also the richer members of our society who hold a disproportionate quantum of knowledge, societal wealth and resources.
When you look at the trend in the world, seeing that it is increasingly becoming digitized, knowledge-based and competitive, one cannot but conclude that the future belongs to those who have very good education and knowledge.
This is the future we project for our children and that is why we are straining the resources of government to give them the best education available and possible.
We are bringing in the community because we want our communities to have ownership of our schools since the community is the primary stakeholder in education. It is also self-evident that for the success and any attainment of a person in life, his or her community first takes credit. The first thing that is asked after someone becomes successful or famous is: ‘where is she/he from?’ By the same token, moral and educational failures of an individual is also shared by his community. This is the ancient wisdom behind banishing an individual whose actions and disposition do not conform to the values of a community.
Therefore, the failure of any school in moral, educational, physical standards is collective failure of the community. Failure of any child is a failure of the community; every school and every child thus need the support of the community to achieve success. Even if you have no child in the school, demonstrate your sense of responsibility to your community by supporting your schools. Superintend all schools’ activities, monitor the pupils and report shortcomings to the appropriate authorities.
In composing the board members, all stakeholders in the community – traditional rulers, leaders, iyalojas, artisans forum of parents, educationists, professional etc. – were consulted. Members were picked by the communities through their recognised organs. It is our view therefore that you are all capable of performing satisfactorily the assignment given to you.
However, the committee members should be made to realise that they were nominated based on the fact that they could contribute meaningfully to Community Based Management Committees, Boards and Councils, but if found ineffective, the management has the right to determine their continued membership;
Secondly, members are expected to source for fund for schools’ improvement, jointly plan for its utilisation and ensure its judicious use for schools’ improvement and development;
Thirdly, with Community Based Management Committees, Boards and Councils, everything will work as expected in our schools, the issue of supervision would be easy because feedback will be obtained from the community;
Fourthly, the committee members are to identify schools’ needs and challenges and take appropriate actions towards solving them.
While it is part of the responsibilities of the various committees, boards and councils to raise funds and complement government’s efforts in funding the schools, the objectives are not to impose levies or overburden the parents and pupils, but to manage the schools for excellence.
There are clear challenges in attitudes of teachers as seen in the high failure rate and absence of grooming in their pupils; there are challenges also among the pupils, manifest in the gangster-like and unruly behaviour of some of them. The school should be the centre of excellence for knowledge impartation and character building. Without proper management and supervision, we cannot achieve this. With the efforts and financial resources government is committing to education, our school leavers should be able to face the world, well-armed with knowledge and good character. This is where your job is well cut for you. You must instil discipline in all.
You should also note that this appointment is not a political reward. It is not a call to political patronage, primitive accumulation and self-aggrandisement. Rather, it is a solemn call to the building of our society. It is a call to be part of history; it is a call to be remembered in the future when credits are given to those who stood to be counted in the making of an informed society.
Therefore, from now on, the slogan would be: Support your community; own and oversee your schools. We shall evaluate and assess your performance through the physical condition of your schools, the character and performance of your students. These will be recognized annually with State medals and others laurels of distinctions.
I congratulate you for heeding the call and for being part of this historic mission.
I thank you all for your kind attention.
Osun a dara!
The committee members drawn from all the 30 Local Governments in the state are grouped in three categories separately for all the local governments in the state for the Elementary, Middle and High Schools respectively.
Speaking at the inauguration held at the Government Technical College in Osogbo, Ogbeni Aregbesola pointed out that the move is aimed at returning the schools to the communities which he described as the original owners for easy management and maintenance.
He said, “the government is inaugurating the committee because it is believed that the community owns education and they are the ones who can manage better than anybody.
While explaining the importance of education to the society, Governor Aregbesola stressed that education is very critical because it is an area where no society can afford to fail, emphasizing that it is only through education that the society can amend the past, meet up the present and safeguard the future.
The Governor among other objectives charged members of the committee to source for funds to maintain and manage the schools without creating unnecessary burden on parents and pupils but to find a way of assisting them.
He also charged the committee to identify the school needs and lapses so as to find lasting solutions to them, while also explaining to them not to see their appointment into the various committees as a political reward but a call to be part of history.
He said,”It makes good sense to know that community based approach to school management is the best approach anywhere in the world as it is effective in the management of our schools”
“We are spending so much in the education sector because education is critical to every society, it is an area where no society can afford to fail, the education sector is important because it is through education that a society can meet up with the present and safeguard the future”
“Education is the primary foundation of every development, the technology of building, architecture science among others are acquired through education, so there is nothing you can do without education”
“With the trends in the world, the whole world is now going digital and one can not but conclude that the future belongs to only the educated”
“To the newly inaugurated committee, I want them to know that this assignment should not be seen as a political reward, you should rather see it as a call to be part of history because our government is bent in changing the face of education in the state of Osun and we will be surely remembered for it”
“I want to also assure you that there will be prices for the community management committee that performs exceptionally” the governor noted.
In her address, the Deputy Governor, Mrs. Grace Titilaoye Tomori charged the members of the committee to see the new school facilities as that of their individual community property, saying their jobs is to ensure that the schools are well managed.
Mrs. Tomori who doubled as Commissioner of Education, held that the current government has seriously invested huge resources on education, having considered it as a pivot to all kinds of development, saying to this generous initiative, there is a need for the committee to perform their responsibilities diligently.
The Deputy Governor who described the task of the committee as a great challenge that must be faced squarely with utmost sense of responsibility, honesty and commitment, reiterating that the time has come for the committee to prove its quality in the area being saddled with.
Mrs. Tomori however implored the committee to perform its responsibility as expected and not let the government down in the confidence reposed in them to oversee and maintain of such gigantic facilities in their respective posts.
“Our government has identified education as the pivot of development, that is why we didn’t look back at all in our drive to take education to the greater heights we all desired in the state”
“without any sense of doubt, the job of this committee is to ensure that our schools are well maintained.
“In as much as members of this committee is being drawn from various communities and as well made of people at the grassroots, therefore nothing else is expected than excellent performance.
“As for your oversight functions, members of this committee are further charged to participate in every activity going on in their various schools most on the area of home grown feeding called O’meal
“Every facilities’ manager is expected as a matter of necessary and oversight function to monitor the O’meal vendors in order to quality service delivery and better performance.
“All the schools are to be managed by the communities because we believe you are all stakeholders and that’s why we have brought together all the lovers of education to be part of the committees in the all the local government”, Mrs. Tomori opined.
In his remarks, the Permanent Secretary, State Universal Basic Education Board, Alhaji Fatai Kolawole enjoined members of the committee to see themselves as owners of the facilities and schools at large in their various communities.
He called on them to see the inauguration as an opportunity to support the administration of Ogbeni Aregbesola in his bid to change the face of education in the state of Osun.
“It is our belief that the committees can assist government in the proper management of the education facilities which government has spent so much money to put in place”, he stated.
A picture of the cross section of the newly inaugurated Community Based School Management Committee by Governor Rauf Aregbesola to oversee the School activities in Osun, during the inauguration at the Government Technical College, Osogbo on Thursday 14-01-2016.