www.osundefender.org WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2016 Everyone is aware that the country is in dire straits. The critical response to a crisis is straightforward; What is to be done? In the case of our federating units the answer is unambiguous; look inwards; this is the sensible way to
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Tax Payment Necessary To Boost Osunâ€™s IGR turn a crisis into an opportunity for a rebirth. It is also the pathway to a sustainable future. The state of Osun is no exception to this rule of thumb. The state
of Osun under a far sighted, innovative government has gone through a wonderful transformation. Unprecedented massive investment in the physical and social
infrastructure has launched the path to a sustainable future. Now in the middle of a crunching economic downturn the steady progress achieved has to be maintained and
VOL. 11. NO.100
protected. For Osun increasing internally generated revenue ( IGR) will be decisive. In actual fact there is no alternative. This is not in anyway an attempt to reinvent the
wheel. Lagos state starting with the equally far sighted Asiwaju Bola Tinubu in 1999 has shown that it can be done. Continued on Page 5
Group Donates Ward To Hospital
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Poverty Eradication Day: Osun Assembly
Makes Case For Youths, Others - See Story On Page 2
â€˘(L-R) State of Osun Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola; the Alafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi and his Oloris during the Special Jumat service in commemoration of 78th birthday anniversary of the Alafin of Oyo, at Oyo Central Mosque, Oyo State, recently.
Stakeholders Charged To Develop Model For Prevention Malaria:
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OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Poverty Eradication Day: Osun Assembly Makes Case For Youths, Others
SUN State House of Assembly, under the leadership of Honourable Najeem Salaam, has tasked government to focus more on grassroots in its quest to banish poverty and fast-track accelerated development. The Assembly made the communities should be call in a statement signed implemented. by the Chairman, House “Communities should Committee on be provided with I n f o r m a t i o n , essential basic Olatunbosun Oyintiloye infrastructure, by to mark the International increasing the rural Day for the Eradication of population’s access to Poverty. potable water, basic The day for the health care and education eradication of poverty has among others” been observed every year Acknowledging the since 1993, when the initiatives of the Federal United Nations General Government to address Assembly, by resolution recession, Osun Assembly 47/196 of December 22, pointed that with effective 1992, designated October monitoring, projects such 17 to promote eradication as NPower, and other of poverty and destitution poverty alleviations in all countries. initiatives, as well as The lawmakers noted youths in technology that the greatest challenge programmes, will bring of the 21st Century is great succour to the inequality, a situation famished citizenry. that had seen the world Also, emphasizing the fortunes concentrated in need for intervention in the hands of few small scale industry, individuals and empowerment of communities. peasants’ farmers, Identifying rural urban artisans and market migration, neglect of women, the state agriculture, poor parliament stressed that agricultural practices, redirection of education non-utilisation of orientation to favour available technology, lack entrepreneurship skills of energy and appetite for and pursuit will foreign consumption, springboard the economy mono-economy, policy out of the doldrums. inconsistencies as parts of It also identified access factors responsible for to quality healthcare, unabating poverty in the basic education, land, the lawmakers improved level of literacy called for new mindsets among adults, school among the populace. attendance, local “The idea of handouts capacity-building and from governments, white strengthening of civil collared jobs should be based organisations and jettisoned for out of the NGOs as vital box ideas.” components in While calling for addressing poverty in the inclusion of science in country. agricultural practices in “With the commitment rural areas, opening up of of the leadership to farm roads and massive accountability and best production of electricity practices, continuous and other infrastructure fight against corruption, to drive the economy, the change in the approach of parliament said doing government conscious actions and business, the yearnings policies to help bail out of global community to
reduce poverty will be a reality in the country,” the Assembly submitted. Osun parliament affirmed that improvement in the quality of public administration and service delivery in rural areas through effective
people’s participation in decision-making processes would go a long way to bring relief to the citizenry. The parliament, which also acknowledged the Government of Osun for its programmes and policies in favour of the
populace, pointed out that the approach inspite of prevailing financial handicap had helped to stabilize the polity. “Government and other stakeholders must adopt innovative approaches at both the macro and micro levels
for highly efficient community development and capacity-building for rural dwellers.” The assembly assured that it was committed to passage of bills that will create conducive environment for business and investors to thrive.
HE State of Osun House of Assembly under the leadership of the Speaker, Honourable Najeem Salaam, has called for synergy among stakeholders working on protection of girl-child to ensure their proper upbringing. It made the call in a Chairman, House Comstatement signed by the mittee on Information
and Strategy, Olatunbosun Oyintiloye, on the celebration of International Day of the Girl-child. The parliament noted that efforts must be inten-
sified to put a stop to flimsy arrangement that allows for loop-holes in the matters that affect the girl-child, saying, every girl-child deserves balanced nutrition, affection, healthcare and quality education. Stressing the need for collaboration among players such as Ministry of Women Affairs, Social Welfare, NGOs, and faithbased community organizations, the Assembly stated that child rescue operations from the claws of predators should not be left to NGOs alone, but all residents in the community. It also called for proper documentation of cases and enforcement of existing laws on offenders to serve as deterrent to others. The parliament further advocated the need for leaders of thought to provide springboard for affirmative action against individuals or groups who abuse children, either by denying them education, inflicting assault on them physically, engaging them in street hawking, trafficking and sexual abuse. According to the state parliament, it was in recognition of the need to protect the Girl-child that it passed Osun State Girlchild Marriage (Prohibition) Law, 2004, and Child Rights Law, 2007 in the best interest of the child. It specifically charged parents and guardians to step up their games, as they were morally obliged to provide the first line of protection for their children. “Child abuse is the mental, sexual or physical assault of a child either by the parents or guardians. Child abuse, in whatever form, is a violation of the rights of a child and it must be condemned by all.” The state legislature added that synergy among different organizations would fast-track social development and re-integration, especially of rescued child.
Osun Parliament Advocates Synergy On Child Protection
•President Muhammadu Buhari visited MSA Aliyu, Army Commander Brigadier General and Acting General Officer Commanding 3 Division Nigeria Army, Jos at an hospital in Berlin, Germany last Saturday.
OSUN DEFENDER Reporter Loses Dad T HE death has been announced of Pastor Theophilus Iyiola Olagoke Olasinde of Olowologa Compound, Iree, headquarters of Boripe North LCDA of the State of Osun. During his lifetime, the Aged 84, Pastor Olasinde, a retired late Pa Olasinde’s h e a d m a s t e r , pioneering feats included accomplished church holding the forte as acting u n d e r - s h e p h e r d , pastor for years over First preacher and church Baptist Church, Eekoosin planter, joined the saints and the founding in 1976 triumphant on Monday, of First Baptist Church, Okuku, both in the State September 5, 2016. of Osun. He was in 1978 ordained a Deacon at F.B.C. Eekoosin. In 1989, the late octogenarian retired from active teaching engagement at St. Peter’s African Church Primary child to be disciplined, School, Oyan, having obedient and always served meritoriously for dress decently in order statutory 35 years in the to avert any form of service of his fatherland. After retirement, he sexual harassment. She also admonished undertook a formal pastoral training at the government and Baptist parents to take the Nigerian education of girls Theological Seminary, Ogbomoso; after which he serious, as doing so will pastored several liberate their minds and churches, including expose them to Fellowship Baptist achieving their dreams, Church, Alakuko and thereby enabling them First Baptist Church, to contribute positively Adalemo, Ota, Ogun to the development of State; a preaching station of Providence Baptist the country. NAWOJ chairperson Church, Lagos. Pastor Olasinde served t h e r e a f t e r , congratulated every as church leader at First Baptist Church, Okuku girl-child in the state for 20 years before retiring and wished them better home in 1996. He served years ahead.
Osun NAWOJ Charges Global Community To Champion Girl-child Rights
S the world celebrates International Day of the Girl-child, the State of Osun chairperson of Nigeria Association of Women Journalists (NAWOJ), Mrs. Toyin Adeoye, has charged the global community to support girl-child development and champion their rights. Mrs. Adeoye stated on the theme for this celebration, this while speaking year’s is: “Girls with journalists in which Osogbo, the state Progress Equal to ( S u s t a i n a b l e capital. According to her, the Development) Goals girl-children with an Progress: A global Girl estimated population of Data Movement”, Mrs. 1.1 billion, are talented Adeoye stated that and creative bunch, when a girl is educated whose potentials are and well-trained, it will often thwarted by be easy for such a child discrimination, violence to reach an enviable and unequal height in life. Mrs. Adeoye then opportunities. While commenting admonished the girl-
astutely in the Lord’s vineyard in various capacities at various levels of Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN), Bible Society of Nigeria (both in OdoOtin LGA of Osun State), defunct Bethel Baptist Association, old Oyo East Baptist Conference, EwaOluwa Baptist Association, Osun Baptist Conference, as well as Nigerian Baptist Convention. He is survived by his beloved widow, Madam Rachael Ibironke Olasinde, children, grandchildren and great grandchildren, among whom is Niyi Olasinde of OSUN DEFENDER. He went on holy pilgrimage to Israel in 2011. Funeral arrangements will be announced later.
•The late Pa OLASINDE.
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Olojo Festival: Osun Assembly Advocates Preservation Of
Osogbo festival and grove in Osogbo; Olumirin Waterfall in Erin-Ijesa; Kiriji memorial war site in Imesi-Ile and many more all over the state. “These potentials have the capacity to create jobs for our teeming youths, enhance their creativity
and sell the tourism potentials of the state to the world for a self sustaining economy,” it said. Noting that though, the Government of Osun under Governor Rauf Aregbesola has done a lot to invest in the tourism
sector, the parliament said there is need for greater partnership between the state and the Federal Government towards making the tourism potentials more attractive. Congratulating Oba
By KAZEEM MOHAMMED HE State of Osun House of Assembly has advocated the preservation and full development of historical and cultural heritage of Yoruba as a long-term potent ways out of the current economic quagmire in Nigeria. The Assembly made the quagmire in this country, call in a statement signed but we are not paying by the Chairman, House serious attention to them. Committee on “In Osun for example, HE Government of the State of Osun has Committee Chairman Information and Strategy, we are blessed with Culture and once again reiterated its commitment to on Honourable Olatunbosun cultural Olojo festival, promoting cultural events in the state with Tourism, Honourable Oyintiloye, to Oranmiyan staff and congratulate the Ooni of Oduduwa Shrine among a view to boosting the tourism potentials of the Olasunkanmi Akinola, made by the State of at the exhibition of arts Ife, Oba Adeyeye others in Ile-Ife; Osun state. This statement was Osun House and crafts organised by Ogunwusi and the people of Ifeland on the celebration of 2016 annual traditional Olojo Festival. It said, there are a lot of potentials hidden in the cultural heritage of Yorubas that can be discovered and developed to take care of tourism industry, which is a major economic development drive. The state parliament regretted that the heavy reliance on oil has driven the country away from serious concentration on tourism sector which should have been developed. “There are several •State of Osun Governor Rauf Aregbesola, being welcome from left, state Head of Service, Elder Sunday Owoeye; the hidden treasures in the Orangun of Oke-Ila, Oba Adekokun Abolarin; his Alakola of Akola - Ijesa, counterpart, Oba Festus Adeyemi; Hon. cultural heritage of the Festus Babatunde, member Osun House of Assembly, representing Atakumosa LG; Hon. Adebayo Gbola, representpeople of Nigeria, ing Olorunda in the State House of Assembly and others, during the International Day For The Eradication of especially in Yorubaland, Poverty and the First Osun CSDP Community Fair, at the Atlantis Civic Center, Osogbo, on Monday. that have been left underdeveloped. “These inactions of ours have contributed to the pains of economic Akanmu stated that alone, hence the need for recession when there was By ISMAEEL UTHMAN individuals to ensure members of the Iwo fall in the price of oil that O ensure provision of sound and affordable active participation in the Muslim Association, we focused on, because healthcare delivery in Nigeria, the government series of health Treichville, Cote D’voire the country had no and individuals must see health programmes programmes. decided to donate a ward alternative of economic as a collective responsibility. According to Akanmu, to the general hospital to development to fall back An Islamic group, Iwo Hospital, Iwo, State of individual contributions contribute to the free on. Muslim Association, Osun, on Saturday. to the health sector would health programme of “No doubt, we are very Treichville, Cote D’voire Rauf President of the ensure affordable and Governor rich in culture, tradition, branch, made the association, Alhaji standard healthcare in all Aregbesola and to make heritages and festivals statement while handing Abdulganiy Akanmu, nooks and crannies of the sure that Iwo people have that can be developed to over a private ward built said standard healthcare country, and will ensure access to qualitative serve as a long term by members of the delivery system could not healthy living of the healthcare. solution to economic association to the State be left to the government citizenry. He said: “Health is a sector that everybody must be conscious and interested in. Government cannot be left alone to Mr. Orhorhamreru handle healthcare; we targets the creation of awareness on malaria Tosin, who represented should be all concerned Malaria on the crucial sector. It is and elimination National HE Permanent Secretary, Hospitals programmes to policy E l i m i n a t i o n a collective responsibility to ensure that our society Management Board (HMB) in the State of makers and major Programme (NMEP), has standard healthcare Osun, Engineer Olusegun Aduroja, has stakeholders at state appealed to the State delivery system. Government of Osun charged stakeholders on malaria elimination in and local government through the Permanent “Individuals should the state to take critical look at the menace of levels. to the According to her, Secretary, to release the contribute malaria fever in the society and develop a counterpart fund on development of our strategic model that will prevent mosquitoes AOP will also ensure time community. No amount of to facilitate from carrying plasmodium that causes malaria that 100% public health successful execution of contribution to the health facilities in the state are sector is small or big fever as prevention is better than cure. supplied with the 2017 AOP. According to him, statement at the information, education In his response, because we are all going the adoption of Rapid Conference Room of and communication Aduroja assured the to enjoy better and Diagnostic Testing/ the State Ministry of (IEC) materials in 2017. management of State advanced health facilities that we facilitated, or be a Microscope before the Health, Osogbo, Meanwhile, the (NMEP) that Governor victim of poor health use of any anti-malaria during the verification Project Manager A r e g b e s o l a ’ s management. drug makes effective meeting for the stressed that, over administration values “We built this ward for case management dissemination of 2017 N900 million is the the people of Osun our people in Iwo, despite achievable and Annual Operational budget estimates living a healthy life, the fact that we live in eventually leads to Plan on malaria control required to execute the hence the state will not Cote D’voire. It is our possible elimination of activities in the state. 2017 AOP. The health- hesitate to play her own belief that this small malaria fever, thereby During the assisted NGOs will role to fast-track the gesture will no doubt reducing loss of presentation, the contribute about 95%, s u c c e s s f u l increase the facilities at the state’s implementation of 2017 the manpower which has Project Manager, Mrs. while State General Plan Hospital, Iwo, which adverse effect on the Romoke Adeyanju, counterpart fund is 5%, Operational against malaria in the majority of our people country’s GDP. stated, among other which is over N50 state. patronize to treat Aduroja made the things, that 2017 AOP million. themselves.
Ogunwusi and the people of Ile-Ife for the Olojo Festival celebration, the Assembly urged all stakeholders to support the monarch and the government towards making the festival more attractive.
Government Promises To Promote Cultural Events T
Group Donates Ward To Hospital T
Malaria: Stakeholders Charged To Develop
Model For Prevention
the State Ministry of Information, Home Affairs, Tourism and Culture with the State Tourism Board, as well as Osun State Arts and Culture, as part of the series of programmes to mark this year’s Olojo festival. Olasunkanmi observed that tourism has become a veritable income generation venture worldwide, hence the need to develop all tourist attraction events, both natural and man-made. In his opinion, a member of the State House Committee on Culture and Tourism, Honourable Israel Oluwatomilayo Aloba, who accompanied the Chairman to the occasion, said the state should have a media platform to showcase all the rich tourist attraction sites and events in the state to the outside world. This, according to him, will create awareness in the people, as well as investors in Osun tourism potentials. Series of activities such as traditional w r e s t l i n g , performances by various cultural troupes, as well as exhibition of artworks and traditional Yoruba cuisines were displayed. Meanwhile, the grand finale of the Olojo Festival was held last Saturday, at the Palace of the Ooni of Ife, where the Ooni, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi Ojaja II wore the Are Crown for the first time since his ascension to the throne of his ancestors. The State of Osun and Governor Rauf Aregbesola also felicitated with the Ooni and the entire people of Ife, both at home and in the Diaspora on the celebration of this year’s Olojo festival. The State Government then enjoined the celebrants to remain peaceful after the celebrations and should show the Omoluabi virtue for which the State of Osun is known.
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Tax Payment Necessary To Boost Osun’s IGR Continued from Pg1 The astronomic increase in IGR has demonstrated what planning and determination can do. Crucially the revenue raised has been demonstrably put to very good use. Lagos state has never looked back even at times of adversity. The state has weathered the storm and is on top of the job of creating a mega-metropolis worth living in. The governor of Osun state the Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola was as a commissioner; a member of that path breaking team. Tried and tested he knows how it is done. It's time to put the knowledge base and expertise gained in Lagos into productive use in
the state of Osun. Doing so will involve emphasising the social contract between the government and the people. The state government under Aregbesola has certainly delivered on its own part of the bargain. New schools, roads have been constructed; in addition social programmes such as the free school meals programme, monthly stipend for the elderly e.t.c have been implemented and sustained to widespread acclaim at home and abroad. Now is the turn of every other stakeholder to reciprocate in order to compliment the magnificent intervention of the
Aregbesola administration. The Aregbesola government has no intention whatsoever to increase taxes. In actual fact a solid case can be made for increased taxes as a response to the economic downturn. Nevertheless the Aregbesola government has no intention of doing so. What the government wants and this is legitimate is for everyone to pay their contributions and taxes. This is both legitimate and fair as well as very critical in a democracy. A democratic dispensation is after all an aggregation of stakeholders all of who contribute to the development of the community by paying their taxes and
levies. This is why the well known slogan of the American revolution was "no taxation without representation!" With a government that has delivered on its part of the bargain, the people of the state must now rally round and deliver by paying their taxes. This is the only way that the pivotal gains can be protected and indeed enhanced. Oil prices internationally are not going to rebound any time soon. We are in for a long period of discomfort. This means that to protect education, access to health and so on everyone must pay their taxes. For no one can pin any hope on ever dwindling federal allocations any more. The present difficult pe-
Much Ado About Mrs Buhari’s Interview
have read so much on Aisha since in recent times. To me, Nigerians are a special breed. Suddenly, this woman is not wanted in America! So Buhari did not marry a child again. Her gold, diamond and platinum bracelets are no longer topics for discussion. We are moving out of recession indeed! Many of the hypocrites on Facebook beat their wives. Many are so useless that they establish pepper soup joints for some useless dogs called women, while their children cannot feed at home. Many don’t care about how their children school fees are paid. Aisha is the CEO of a thriving company. One of Buhari’s daughters is a lawyer. His girls are graduates. I have read posts from some of my friends who, surprisingly, failed to see the statement credited to Buhari as a joke. I have
followed some of them on Facebook. I know most of them will not tolerate any dissenting view from their wives. Aisha is not in purdah. She is not confined to the kitchen, literally. I doubt if she still cooks. I would have expected the new supporters of Aisha to
ask Buhari about the location of the kitchen. Is it Aso Villa, where there exists a culinary complex? Look at Aisha and tell us if she belongs to the category of oppressed women. The fact that she granted the controversial interview bears eloquent testimony to Buhari’s character. She just returned from the US. That trip generated another kind of controversy. That
seems not important now. Many of these hypocrites are not proud of their wives. Many of them pretend to love women but will work against them. Politicians abuse women sexually. They see them as play things. They only allow them when their unscrupulous god-
fathers impose them and direct political slaves to vote. Academics talk of them as “conference materials”. These are people’s wives, daughters, sisters, cousins, who belong to everybody, while pretending to be in some dubious relationships. Lucky is she whose husband can proudly assert that she has a place in his bedroom. She is not sharing this space with any woman to our knowl-
edge. Buhari’s religion allows him to marry four women. If the President attempted to douse tension generated by the wife’s interview, and we fail to appreciate his joke, then our sense of humour appears morbid. Nigerians did not elect Aisha. She has no official role in the Constitution. She cannot decide on who gets appointed into the government. If she complains that she does not know those in government, it means Buhari cannot be accused of nepotism. If she is pained that she is not involved in governance, that is a big plus for him. She was not on the ballot during the last election. She should not pick ministers and heads of agencies for us. Is this not part of the change we crave? Hypocrisy is not a virtue.
• D O Y I ODEBOWALE, Lagos State.
riod will pass and Osun state will come out strongly. To overcome we recommend that every one should rally round the government at this critical junction by paying their taxes and helping the state. Their is no alternative and it is the right thing to do. Let's do it together for the sake of our state!
•This piece, already used in one of our previous editions, is repeated due to popular demand.
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OSUN DEFENDER is published by Moremi Publishing House Limited, Promise Point Building, Opposite Guarantee Trust Bank GTB, Gbongan Road, Osogbo, State of Osun. All correspondence to the above mail address. ISSN: 0794-8050 Telephone: 0803-392-7286, 08033880205 Website: www.osundefender.com/index.php e-mail: email@example.com
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
STATE GOVERNMENT OF OSUN MINISTRY OF EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY REQUEST FOR EXPRESSION OF INTEREST AS FACILITY PROVIDER. 1. INTRODUCTION The State Government of Osun, in pursuit of its Policy of Functional and Qualitative Education needs to outsource the management of its newly built Model Public High Schools in the State. Services of facility Management Company is therefore required. 2. FUNCTIONS The functions expected to be carried out by a successful Facility management company would include the following: · Cleaning of the internal and external environment of a school. · Security functions. · Horticulture. · Property management functions. Individuals, groups and private sector companies who wish to render facility management services to the schools are hereby invited to express their interest for the services. 3. REQUIRED DOCUMENTS The following documents are expected to be attached to the EOI: · CAC REGISTRATION · PROFESSIONAL BODIES REGISTRATION (NIGERIA INSTITUTION OF ESTATE SURVEYORS AND VALUERS (NIESV) OR INTERNATIONAL FACILITY MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION (IFMA) · DOCUMENTARY OF EVIDENCE OF ABILITY TO PERFORM · PROFESSIONAL INDEMNITY INSURANCE · OTHERS 4. SUBMISSION OF PREQUALIFICATION DOCUMENTS All Expression of Interests (EOIs) are required to be written in English Language; while all attachments are to be in PDF Format. All Expression of Interests are to be submitted either on line to sfolajide87"gmail.com OR Office of the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, State Secretariat, Osogbo. The deadline for submission of EOI is Friday 31st, October 2016. Signed Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, State Government of Osun, Secretariat, Osogbo, Nigeria.
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Education OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Towards All-round Excellence II Still as prelude to the sixth year anniversary of the incumbent Governor Rauf Aregbesola administration in the saddle of leadership and service in the State of Osun (second year in its second tenure in office). NIYI OLASINDE, in this series, devoted to revisiting and updating the giant strides of the administration. The set-out with the sole intent of fulfilling the mandate of giving proper documentation to the milestone achievements of the administration; even in the face of paucity of funds that is currently plaguing virtually all states in the Nigerian federation.
•Calisthenics displays commemorating 25th Anniversary celebration of the creation of Osun with 4,000 pupils making the above formations (‘AKU ODUN’ and ‘OSUN AT 25’), at Osogbo City Stadium, Osogbo, recently.
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
•A cross section of Government Public Schools’ pupils waving to President Muhammadu Buhari on his arrival for the commissioning of Osogbo Government High School, Osogbo, State of Osun, recently.
Towards All-round Excellence O
•Continued from last week.
N the justification behind the introduction of the O’ Meal programme, the Governor made the following comments: “It is this philosophy that has guided and inspired all of our policies as your government. We put in place the O’Mealsprogramme for feeding all elementary school children daily because we know that a large number of our people find it difficult to feed themselves and their children. We know that undernourishment and calorie deficiency is a major cause of physical and mental underdevelopment of children and young people. “It has been scientifically confirmed in many countries that provide lunch for their children in school that it significantly improves the academic performance and health of the pupils. We are finding this to be the case in our state. “Additionally, the programme has increased elementary school enrolment in Osun from 150,000 to 380,000 children. We now have the largest elementary school enrolment in the country.” Of particular note is the reference we intend to draw to the last quoted paragraph above. On the overall, it is the aggregate of the comprehensive and integrative package of initiatives in the education sector of the state that contributed to the upsurge in enrolment statistics of public schools in the state, to the effect that there was a swelling of more than double only within the space of three years! Now after four years of running
with the vision, the feats are still on. Commenting on the Opon Imo initiative, the Governor traced the purpose of its introduction and the impact it had made so far, when he said: “Our provision of ‘OPON IMO’ (THE TABLET OF KNOWLEDGE) which contains all the textbooks and teaching aids required in high school is because we know that most parents in the state simply cannot afford the cost of textbooks. “Again we believe that all of our children, regardless of the financial means of their parents, must have equal access to books and other materials for effective learning. The introduction of this electronic tablet is to bring our children, no matter how remote their location may be from the centres of digital advancement, to familiarity and currency with cutting-edge technology.” The Governor appraised the overall education policies and programmes of his administration in lucid terms in the following words: “The same is true of our educational reform policy. You will recall that when I was sworn in as Governor in November 2010, the schools were in a shambles. Hardly any school in the state had facilities of any kind. We then called for an education summit, attended by great educationists and intellectuals of all persuasions. “Professor Wole Soyinka, our own
Nobel Laureate, made time out to personally attend. The summit recommended a complete overhaul of our education system.” He particularly appraised the outcome and effectiveness of the first-ever State of Osun Education Summit as follows: “The most important conclusion of the summit was the restructuring of the system into three basic categories, Elementary, Middle and High schools. Grades 1–4 are the elementary school, Grades 5–9 are the middle school, while grades 10–12 are the high school.” Concerning the State of Osun Schools’ Infrastructure Development Committee (O’ SCHOOLS), the Governor affirmed our claims when he said: “In the high school, we focus on preparing the children for both internal and external examinations. Our plan is to build 20 new high schools, 50 middle schools and 100 elementary schools. Each of these schools will be equipped to state-of– the-art standards, especially with digital learning aids, electronic boards, functional and contemporary laboratory equipment, sports facilities, clean water and large power generators etc.” Making justification for the merger of schools, the Governor made the following clarifications: “The only way to provide these
facilities at affordable costs is to merge small poorly equipped schools into larger schools where all the facilities can be provided to large numbers of students using economy of scale to maximum advantage. This is what we have done. “Sometimes, this policy has been misunderstood and some have tried to mischaracterize the reforms as having a religious undertone. This is most unfortunate, wicked and untrue. “The philosophy of our education policy has been the development of a new man intellectually, socially and morally. HIS new man is placed in the centre of society and views his own development as part of and for the development of society. “This is a non-parasitic and nonoppressive man, who views his existence in the context of the growth of others; he views whatever he acquires to be subsumed in the overall interest of others. He is a man in himself and a man for society.”
Governor Aregbesola refuted claims by a segment of people that he is bent towards favouring one religion against the other. He also told the story behind the education reforms initiated by his administration: “There are some who may genuinely feel that the education reforms might affect their missions. This is an unfounded fear. Only an irresponsible person will attempt to rubbish or remove the legacy of missionaries in education in Osun and even in Nigeria. I attended mission primary •Continued on page 10
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
2016 Olojo Festival In Ile-Ife, State Of Osun, Last Sunday.
Photo: GBENGA ADENIYI.
•The Ooni of Ife, Oba Adeyeye Enitan Ogunwusi and his wife, Olori Wuraola.
•Chairman, House Committee on Information in the Osun State House of Assembly, Honourable Olatunbosun Oyintiloye (right) in a handshake with former Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Honourable Sunday Akere.
•A cross section of traditional cultural dancers during the programme.
•A cross section of traditional rulers at the event.
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016 59 PHOTOTALK State Of Osun Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, Attended A Special Jumat Service In Commemoration Of The 78th Birthday Anniversary Of The Alafin Of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Adeyemi, At Oyo Central Mosque, Oyo State, Last Friday.
•(L-R) The Alafin of Oyo, Oba Lamidi Olayiwola Adeyemi; Governor Rauf Aregbesola; Pakoyi of Oyo, Sheik Husain Ayodeji; Imam Daud Tijani and member, House of Representatives, Honourable Abdul Akeem Adeyemi, on the occasion.
•Aregbesola (2nd left); The Alafin (3rd left); his Oloris and others.
80th Birthday Celebration Of Prince Tajudeen Olusi At Eko Hotel, Lagos State, Last Saturday.
•State of Osun Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, presenting an award of Majeobaje Odua to Honourable Tajudeen Olusi at the event.
•(L-R) Lagos State Deputy Governor, Mrs Idiat Adebule; Aregbesola; wife of Prince Olusi, Alhaja Mariam and her husband, Prince Olusi in a group photograph on the occasion.
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Towards All-round Excellence II
•A cross section of pupils displaying ‘PEACE AND PROGRESS’ through calisthenic display in Osogbo recently. •Continued from page 10 where communal, religious, ethnic or other social
and secondary schools here in Western Nigeria and I proudly display that on my resume. “But let me take us back into a bit of our fairly recent history. Everyone knows that mission schools were taken over by the government of the Western State almost 38 years ago. This means that since 1975, all mission schools were owned, funded and run by government. But the successive state governments ensured that the names of the schools were not changed, in order to maintain the legacies of the founding missionaries. “Therefore, as we rebuild the schools and expand their facilities, we also have not and will not tamper with their names. We believe that the missions and missionaries, who founded the schools, must be immortalised by retaining the names of the schools. For example, one of the completed middle schools in Osogbo is the Salvation Army Middle School at Alekuwodo.” On the prospects of returning mission schools to their initial owners, the Governor said: “I am also aware of the agitation of some missions to have schools returned to them. Although, as I have said before, the schools have been owned by governments since 1975, our administration is not foreclosing the prospect of returning some of the schools upon the completion of our new schools. “I wish to emphasize that this process can only begin upon completion of the schools we are currently and aggressively building all over the state. The process of return of schools must be well planned and executed because of the various implications, especially the fact that their ownership had changed almost four decades ago.” On the newly introduced Omoluabi Corps and Instilling discipline in school children of the state the Governor said:
“Osun is a state which will be a model of peace and tolerance. I would like to say that religious, political and ethnic tolerance is the basic foundation of our Omoluabi heritage. We must promote this culture of tolerance and civilized conflict resolution with all our might. “This is why we have decided to establish an Omoluabi Peace and Conflict Management Commission. This is to be a standing commission
disputes can be resolved by a body of respected elders from across Yorubaland and even other groups.” Aside the free, functional and qualitative education programme of the incumbent administration in the State of Osun under the leadership of OgbeniRaufAdesojiAregbesola; there are numerous other mutually reconstructive, integrative programmes, policies and packages that are not only in tandem with, but also complementary to the orientation and philosophy of Omoluabi which has formed the core value and bent of the overall exertions of the administration. In all its programmes and policies as well as the execution of all projects, the administration has so far been guided by fairness, justice, equity and fair-play; giving unto all strata and groups across the state as much as is reasonably required, in relation to what is desired within rational limits and within the affordable reach of available means. HIS is done with profound magnanimity; even in the face of dwindling monthly revenue allocation from the Federation Accounts. Today, honest analysts and unbiased observers would agree with OSUN DEFENDER Magazine that this administration has no equal among the ones that had come in earlier years in terms of contribution to the life of the state and the well-being of its residents in all ramifications. The immediate past administration, taken as case study only extorted from and sapped the economy of the state beyond the marrow, such that by the time the knell was sounded for its inglorious exit, the state had almost been dragged into an absolute state of insolvency. The case and fate of the state was as terrible as that! It is therefore shameful, disappointing and pitiful to hear insinuations peddled here and there; time and again by members of the leading opposition in the state: the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) attempting to denigrate the giant strides of the RaufAregbesola administration and the tangible, visible and all-encompassing achievements which are so glaring that they cannot be controverted. In pragmatic terms, the State of Osun has in the past four years shed off its old image. The state has acquired new name, new status, and new destiny – all to the
extent that her fortunes have changed for the better! This development came as fulfillment to the predictions we made at the beginning of the launch of the new underlying philosophy in year 2011. During that time under reference, OSUN DEFENDER Magazine postulated that the state’s acquisition of new name, sobriquet, logo / coat of arms, flag, anthem and all the rest transcended mere name-calling and or other superficial underpinnings. We predicted at that early stage that the names and other symbolic representations would speedily begin to speak aloud for the state; such that it would sooner than later be transformed into the envy of all other states around, both in Nigeria and yonder. We are glad today. We can stand tall and beat our chest that Osun is well on course to reaching the Canaan of her dreams. In continuation of the analysis commenced so far in this series, we reopen he current edition by shedding lights on other laudable landmark achievements of h administration. Analysts and observers in the trend, growth and development of education have observed that what made the South-West cynosure of all eyes is its antecedents in education, which made it a pace-setter. While, as observed earlier, most observers point accusing fingers at state governments and their chief executives for the declined state of things, OSUN DEFENDER Magazine wishes to differ slightly, especially considering what the experience has been in the State of Osun under the able leadership of OgbeniAregbesola. Most of the critics argue that since 1999, successive state governments, their chief executives and their umbrella political parties have got their priorities mixed up and abandoned education for inanities. Like it has been observed in earlier paragraphs of this edition, the standard most widely used as basis for comparison of grounds covered in the area of education in the South-West has been the passion and zeal for excellence wielded by the Premier of the defunct Western Region, late Chief Obafemi Awolowo and his colleagues who pioneered free education in 1956 and sustained it in the Second Republic. For now, the exploits of the RaufAregbesola administration in the area of education shall be trumpeted a lot more. Next edition shall carry •Continued on page 11
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Towards All-round Excellence II •Continued from page 10
more of the analysis begun on the rot and decay witnessed in the sector nationwide. The Education aspect of the administration of OgbeniRaufAdesojiAregbesola deserves much of critical focus; since it proved all along that Education sub-sector is one of the principal specialties of the administration. To this end, OSUN DEFENDER Magazine has devoted much space and time to its detailed spotlight in series of our editions in the past years. It is not as if we are giving up of this effort; but we intend not to overbeat it. So, we shall make mention of some of the giant strides recorded in the sub-sector as basis for desires and expectations for the entire second tenure; then we shall justify the incumbent administration’s effort as that which pupils, parents, teachers and perhaps some other stakeholders have least appreciated! N fulfillment of that promise, characteristic of the traditions of this Magazine segment of keeping faith with promises; here we are, continuing with the analysis, as much as facts available at our disposal could afford the privilege of unveiling. The fact is incontestable that the present-day South-West geopolitical zone of Nigeria has the long traditions of producing many firsts in different areas of human endeavor, especially through the instrumentality of institutionalized learning. However, it has turned out over the years that the zone and its constituent states have dozed off; either resting on their oars or losing focus, with lots of distraction taking he best of their priorities. In this regard, OSUN DEFENDER Magazine does not intend to heap the bulk of the blame on governments, past or present, but on the entire people, especially, other categories of stakeholders whose lethargic attitude contributed toward the downward trend. While this sad trend lingers, other zones of the federation, principally the South-East and the South-South are gaining prominence as they
•A laboratory at Ataoja High School, Osogbo.
assert themselves as frontliners in the preparation and eventual performances of their candidates in external (public) examinations. As regards preparation mentioned above, their huge investments appear to be yielding good, positive dividends. In 2015 West African Secondary Schools Certificate Examinations (WASSCE) for example, records show that Abia State (in the South-East) had its pupils with the pass rate of 63.94 per cent (those who made credit passes in five subjects, including English Language and Mathematics). With that overall performance, the state rated best. Anambra State came second with 61.18 per cent; and still within the units, Imo came fifth with percentage pass not too low compared with the two states cited above. Casting memories aback to year 2014, Anambra could be recalled to have ranked first in the entire federation with Abia following closely by the heels; while Edo State came third. Rivers came fourth, Bayelsa seventh and Delta eighth. While the first two, Anambra and Abia are from the South-East, the rest states mentioned above are from the South-South. On the overall, One Million, Five-Hundred and Ninety Thousand, Two-Hundred and EightyFour (1, 590, 284) candidates sat for the examinations. Out of this figure, Five-Hundred and Sixty-Two, Four-Hundred and Thirteen (562, 413) candidates obtained the minimum requirements of five credits. By implication, 64.63 per cent failed. While critics in some quarters blamed the horrible state of events on what they viewed as lethargic attitude of SouthWest governors, governments, policy makers and governing party (-ies); OSUN DEFENDER Magazine view the situation a bit differently, as some states in the zone really labored astutely and backed such with huge capital and recurrent expenditures in order to revamp the sub-sector. As it turned out, the situation is just that try as you may, the performances could not be made too different in the positive way
due to the cankerworm that had hitherto (cumulatively) eaten deep into the system. As a matter of fact, it was with the benefit of the hindsight that the administration of OgbeniRaufAdesojiAregbesola in the State of Osun saw the imminent danger that was to befall the sector since as far back as 2005 (five solid years before coming on board as helmsman of the State of Osun). Upon assuming the reins of power as Number One Citizen, the enigma deployed resources of sorts to redeeming the tide for the public education sub-sector of the state. As at today, even when things are viewed against the backdrop of decline in academic performances, it cannot be concluded, safely or otherwise that all hope is lost. This is bearing in mind that investment in education is a whole lot of long-term investment which often takes a considerably long period of time to mature and yield visible dividends. OR instance, while the effects of putting in place beautiful, state-of-the-art, befitting school structures can easily be quantified in terms of upsurge in schools enrolment figure; it would be quite difficult to ascertain how much these investments in infrastructure has contributed to improved performances, until improvements have been observed for a decade or so. It is not a misplaced act that stakeholders worry about the downturn of trend in education in the South-West zone. Such downturn is, sincerely speaking a serious developmental crisis. Let me quote the following from a revered work on the appalling situation which I recently worked with: “Without productive knowledge, economic growth is endangered. The youth won’t be able to cope in a highly competitive world. The grim truth about education, as Ricardo Haussmann, a professor of the Practice of Economic Development at Harvard University, puts it, is that almost all rich countries are rich because they exploit technological progress. “They have moved the bulk of their labour
•Continued on page 12
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Towards All-round Excellence II
•Frontage of Ataoja High School, Osogbo. Continued from page 11
force out of agriculture and into cities, where knowhow can be shared more easily. Their families have fewer children and educate them more intensively, thereby facilitating further technological progress”. Haussmann said. But he adds, “Poor countries need to go through a similar change in order to become rich: reduce farm employment, become more urban, have fewer children and keep those children that they have in school longer. If they do, the doors to prosperity will open”. Awolowo realized this long ago and set the SouthWest communities. Yes, nobody, it seems, is taking notice. This has reinforced the pattern of failure, even in the Unity Schools entrance examinations among South-West pupils”. HIS authority in context, though critical of the South-West governors, further observed as follows: “South-West governors should get the balance right. When it comes to education, investment in productive knowledge is crucial. Awolowo devoted between 40 and 50 per cent of the budget to education at a time when there was no oil income. Ayo Banjo, a former ViceChancellor of the University of Ibadan, said, ‘’ the complaint that is regularly made today is that there are no funds; but I don’t think that this is a very strong reason for not continuing free education as a priority case in the budget. That’s the way to fund education.’’ And he’s right. “There is no magic bullet to save the day except by investing in education again and implementing reforms in the system. This is the time-tested practice in other countries. Data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation Development affirm this. An OECD survey of 30 countries found that the United States spends $809 billion, Japan $160 billion, Germany $154 billion, Brazil $146 billion, France $123 billion, and the United Kingdom $123 billion annually on education. “It is argued that ‘productive knowledge’’ –the skills, experience, and the general know-how that a given population acquires in producing certain goods- determines the pace of its economic development. The South-West must address the situation urgently, in order not to fall further behind. Arguing that the ‘’forceful takeover of schools by the government in 1970’’ damaged education development, a former Anambra State Governor,
Peter Obi, in 2011 returned 1,040 primary schools to the missions (churches) that established them. The clincher was that he awarded a grant of N6 billion to the schools in four installments. Out of this, public primary schools shared N489 million. The impact is evident. “To save the region, teachers must be adequately motivated. This is the secret of Finland, the Czech Republic, China, Japan and South Korea, where education is king, and teaching is a coveted profession. The OECD survey showed that teachers are treated like royalty in Switzerland. The Netherlands, Germany and Belgium follow in terms of high teacher salary. “There is a lot wrong with education in the SouthWest. But with resourcefulness, commitment and selflessness, the governors can turn the gloom around. Inaction is dangerous”. LIGHTS eclipsed on the last edition at the point of documenting the laudable achievements of the incumbent administration in the State of Osun, from the point of reference of utterances of the governor, OgbeniAregbesola himself. The remaining part of the comments are here presented: Concerning the State of Osun Schools’ Infrastructure Development Committee (O’ SCHOOLS), the Governor affirmed our claims when he said: “In the high school, we focus on preparing the children for both internal and external examinations. Our plan is to build 20 new high schools, 50 middle schools and 100 elementary schools. Each of these schools will be equipped to state-of–the-art standards, especially with digital learning aids, electronic boards, functional and contemporary laboratory equipment, sports facilities, clean water and large power generators etc.” Making justification for the merger of schools, the Governor made the following clarifications: “The only way to provide these facilities at affordable costs is to merge small poorly equipped schools into larger schools where all the facilities can be provided to large numbers of students using economy of scale to maximum advantage. This is
what we have done. “Sometimes, this policy has been misunderstood and some have tried to mischaracterize the reforms as having a religious undertone. This is most unfortunate, wicked and untrue. “The philosophy of our education policy has been the development of a new man intellectually, socially and morally. This new man is placed in the centre of society and views his own development as part of and for the development of society. “This is a non-parasitic and non-oppressive man, who views his existence in the context of the growth of others; he views whatever he acquires to be subsumed in the overall interest of others. He is a man in himself and a man for society.”
OVERNOR Aregbesola refuted claims by a segment of people that he is bent towards favouring one religion against the other. He also told the story behind the education reforms initiated by his administration: “There are some who may genuinely feel that the education reforms might affect their missions. This is an unfounded fear. Only an irresponsible person will attempt to rubbish or remove the legacy of missionaries in education in Osun and even in Nigeria. I attended mission primary and secondary schools here in Western Nigeria and I proudly display that on my resume. “But let me take us back into a bit of our fairly recent history. Everyone knows that mission schools were taken over by the government of the Western State almost 38 years ago. This means that since 1975, all mission schools were owned, funded and run by government. But the successive state governments ensured that the names of the schools were not changed, in order to maintain the legacies of the founding missionaries. “Therefore, as we rebuild the schools and expand their facilities, we also have not and will not tamper with their names. We believe that the missions and missionaries, who founded the schools, must be immortalized by retaining the names of the schools. For example, one of the completed middle schools in Osogbo is the Salvation Army Middle School at Alekuwodo.” On the prospects of returning mission schools •Continued on page 13
OSUN DEFENDER Wednesday, October 19, 2016
Towards All-round Excellence II Continued from page 12
to their initial owners, the Governor said: “I am also aware of the agitation of some missions to have schools returned to them. Although, as I have said before, the schools have been owned by governments since 1975, our administration is not foreclosing the prospect of returning some of the schools upon the completion of our new schools. “I wish to emphasize that this process can only begin upon completion of the schools we are currently and aggressively building all over the state. The process of return of schools must be well planned and executed because of the various implications, especially the fact that their ownership had changed almost four decades ago.”
N the newly introduced Omoluabi Corps and Instilling discipline in school children of the state the Governor said:
“Osun is a state which will be a model of peace and tolerance. I would like to say that religious, political and ethnic tolerance is the basic foundation of our Omoluabi heritage. We must promote this culture of tolerance and civilized conflict resolution with all our might. “This is why we have decided to establish an Omoluabi Peace and Conflict Management Commission. This is to be a standing commission where communal, religious, ethnic or other social disputes can be resolved by a body of respected elders from across Yorubaland and even other groups.” Aside the free, functional and qualitative education programme of the incumbent administration in the State of Osun under the leadership of OgbeniRaufAdesojiAregbesola; there are numerous other mutually reconstructive, integrative programmes, policies and packages that are not only in tandem with, but also complementary to the orientation and philosophy of Omoluabi which has formed the core value and bent of the overall exertions of the administration. In all its programmes and policies as well as the execution of all projects, the administration has so far been guided by
fairness, justice, equity and fair-play; giving unto all strata and groups across the state as much as is reasonably required, in relation to what is desired within rational limits and within the affordable reach of available means. This is done with profound magnanimity; even in the face of dwindling monthly revenue allocation from the Federation Accounts. Today, honest analysts and unbiased observers would agree with OSUN DEFENDER Magazine that this administration has no equal among the ones that had come in earlier years in terms of contribution to the life of the state and the wellbeing of its residents in all ramifications. The immediate past administration, taken as case study only extorted from and sapped the economy of the state beyond the marrow, such that by the time the knell was sounded for its inglorious exit, the state had almost been dragged into an absolute state of insolvency. The case and fate of the state was as terrible as that! It is therefore shameful, disappointing and pitiful to hear insinuations peddled here and there; time and again by members of the leading opposition in the state: the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) attempting to denigrate the giant strides of the RaufAregbesola administration and the tangible, visible and all-encompassing achievements which are so glaring that they cannot be controverted. In pragmatic terms, the State of Osun has in the past four years shed off its old image. The state has acquired new name, new status, and new destiny – all to the extent that her fortunes have changed for the better! This development came as fulfillment to the predictions we made at the beginning of the launch of the new underlying philosophy in year 2011. During that time under reference, OSUN DEFENDER Magazine postulated that the state’s acquisition of new name, sobriquet, logo / coat of arms, flag, anthem and all the rest transcended mere name-calling and or other superficial underpinnings. We predicted at that early stage that the names and other symbolic representations would speedily begin to speak aloud for the state; such that it would sooner than later be transformed into the envy of all
•A calisthenics display by public schools’ pupils in Osogbo recently.
other states around, both in Nigeria and yonder. We are glad today. We can stand tall and beat our chest that Osun is well on course to reaching the Canaan of her dreams.
With a view to reviving the lost glory in the area of education in the state, especially having in focus the abysmal performances in external examinations by candidates of the state’s extraction in recent years, lots of events have taken place such that one could safely conclude that a formidable background is now being laid for improvements in a non-distant future time. In times part, following the adoption of the blueprints of the State of Osun Education Summit, criticisms had been rampant on the outcome of the summit and the entire education intervention package of the administration of the administration. In line with this, the basis of pointing accusing fingers by scoffers and detractors cannot be far-fetched. N the whole, the pessimists who never expected anything short of failure from the education programmes and policies of the administration condemned the Free, Qualitative and Functional Education Initiatives of the administration from its very inception. According to them, payments of school fees, tuition, Parents / Teachers’ Association Funds and other sorts of funds billed on parents and guardians (called by whatever name) are ways of getting parents and guardians as stakeholders actively involved in and astutely vomited to the education of their wards, especially as investors. To the above reasoning we differ greatly. In the past years prior to the emergence of the incumbent administration on the horizons; most especially during the years of the holocaust that predated the upcoming of the administration, it was all manner of funds taxed on parents that made a complete mess of the ousted administration of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). During that time, every manner of irregularities was the order of the day. Even then, performances of candidates of the
•Continued on page 14
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Towards All-round Excellence II
•A view of Ejigbo High School, Ejigbo, State of Osun. •Continued from page 14 The ugly effects of these ungodly
date’s extraction at public examinations were not significantly better than what obtains now. All the spate of decay and deterioration that we now experience are taints of the disservice left behind by that administration. People tend to forget the past in such a hurry! The education terrain inherited by the Aregbesola administration was such a shamble and mirage. Our public schools had degenerated into centres of irregularities of sorts. Apart from the spate of infrastructural decay that was the order of the day in our public schools, other irregularities were of ever-increasing magnitude! Aside this, parents were taxed arbitrarily for every item of need of the school, such that pupils / students were required to take to schools seats, simple tools and other items or were made to make monetary payments for them time and time again! ONCERNING academic performances, especially, performances of students of public schools in external examinations, the failure rate during that past era were graver that we have now! Even the grave performances of those days were characterized by irregularities and examination malpractices. Then, almost every one saw examinations as contests that must be won on students’ side at all costs. Nearly all schools in the state were turned into “miracle centres” where superficial “excellent” results were falsified.
practices were not slow in coming. We had transition into institutions of higher learning of students who were not worth the title and the status. The concomitance is the turning out of graduates who could not in any way defend the certificates they profess to carry. All our streets got littered with unemployable graduates. Still on the arguments that abrogation of all manners of fees by payable by parents got us to that abysmal juncture, OSUN DEFENDER Magazine disagrees in totality with this line of reasoning. Down the line of history, free education programmes brandished along with them increased school enrolment, broad-based functional instruction, free book distribution, provision of good, trained, qualified, competent and experienced teachers as well as era of relief and prosperity for parents and guardians. In corollary, improved students performances came in handy. This is such that the society looks back to those glorious eras with nostalgia. Fond memories are captured of the laudable achievements of initiators of those initiatives. As of the observed performances of candidates in the cited states of the federation which came from hind positions of obscurity to become frontliners, we congratulate them. While we do that, we intent to tread with caution, especially when it is considered that there could be diverse means to an end. In Nigeria of today, we witness states where
political gladiators introduce strategies, gimmicks and tactics that are far from acceptable standards into winning elections. Political leaders emerging in this fashion cannot evolve programmes and [policies that will produce good students and school leavers with honestly acquired results. In some of these states we hear of heinous crimes including kidnapping, oil bunkering, vandalization of oil pipelines, insurgency and all manners of criminal inclinations. During election periods, we witnessed in many of the states in questions electoral conducts that breach the peace of the land and those that are against principles of free, fair and credible elections. It is then questionable if the same states in question can conduct examinations that are flawless through their education institutions. As a matter of fact, it is not all achievements (so-called) that are to be envied. Our culture has got so degenerated that we tend to have a bent toward celebrating achievements more than censoring the means that went into attaining the “feat”. On that note, OSUN DEFENDEER Magazine feels dutybound to caution parents, guardians and other stakeholders in the society on the need to take a review of our value system. By traditions, the Yoruba ethnic group has one of the best, richest and most precious value systems which have passed hands from one generation to another. Unfortunately, undue infiltration and incursion have
worked adversely over the years to pollute and debase our fond legacies. Today, most members of the society pride themselves either as Christians or Moslems. There are no crimes in these religions. As a matter of fact, their doctrines and principles have the prime mandate and ultimate commission of breeding adherents who will be at peace with God, the Creator here on earth and even hereafter. Unfortunately, most of our people, a large chunk of whom is adherent to these two faith have missed it. We are in an end-time world of diverse, confused doctrines. PART from the first-ever State of Osun Education Summit held sometime in February 2011, the government of the day has never rested on its oars in putting in place lasting, reformative and enduring programmes and policies that would transform the sub-sector and assuage the hardship being faced in the process of securing brighter future for school leavers of the state, their parents, other significant role players, parents and guardians and the society at large. At the wake of renewed efforts at salvaging the sub-sector this year, there were widespread outcries against the policy evolved by the administration to take the bull by its horns; spurred by exigencies of the moment, to introduce some form of entry prerequisite for massive enrolment of candidates for participation in the annual May / June West
•Continued on page 15
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Towards All-round Excellence II •Continued from page 14
African Secondary School Certificate Examinations (WASSCC); against the rag-bag arrangement that prevailed in years past. The prevailing economic adversities in the land are replete with austere, cost-saving measures for government in particular; and for the governed by extension. In times past, the arrangement was to register and enroll all candidates in the certificate year in all state-owned public schools in Osun and present them for the examinations. Laudable as it appeared, the rag-bag arrangement had many lapses and flaws. Even though it had the prolific benefit of offering equal opportunities to all and sundry, irrespective of state of origin, socio-economic background, religion, sex and other social strata, the abuses noticed with the system and the economic realities of the moment have taught the Government of the state some awful lessons. E have, since sometimes in the perusal of this series, observed mass failure of candidates as major cause of great worry for stakeholders in the Education Sub-Sector of the State of Osun for some time now. One identified cause of this massive failure on the part of the student / pupil is the laissez-faire attitude that since the government is bearing the brunt of the expenses, the student and / or the parents has practically little or nothing to lose if the opportunity is squandered once or for many repeated times. This unfortunate attitude is often the abuse that
renders waste any concept that is declared free in Africa. Another aspect that bothered the minds of truly patriotic elements of the society while the practice lasted was reports on the nefarious activities of some school principals / administrators who allegedly collected enrolment fees for the examinations from awful number of parents for their wards across the borders and confines of the state; but who ended up offering the candidates for the examinations on the bills of the State Government! This dubious and treacherous practice imputed huge wasteful costs on the government, fraudulently enriched some greedy hawks in the service of the state and increased the failure / turnover rate of young school leavers, who leave school without any hope of securing admissions into institutions of higher learning or prospects of getting some forms of job to do. Of a truth, the factor which taught government lessons of hardest reality is the economic downturn and its attendant paucity of funds. We are living in a society where much is expected from government at all levels, yet relatively few of the adult, taxable population has obligation to fulfill to government. Without any conscious attempt at casting aspersion on the people or any segment of the society’s populace, we are in a society where irresponsible citizenship is rampant. Instances abound everywhere in the society of individuals and groups who have little or nothing
•L.A. Elementary School, Obande, Ede, State of Osun.
to sow into governance; yet they expect much from government for their various aspects of need. It could be quite difficult here to cite examples without appearing as critical o0f some segment of people in the society. The attempt here is to make a clarion call on all and sundry to weigh their relative contribution to the governance of the society and through that appraise their relevance and usefulness. ACED with the realities of the moment, Government of the State of Osun was left with no other option than to review the conduct of enrolment for the vital external examination in question. One of the earliest innovations introduced into the selection process by the incumbent administration is the introduced of a unified Mock examination as screening formula in determining that government spending does not either go down the drains or spent after bad. It would be remembered that the free enrolment project had been with us for some time before the advent of the incumbent administration. As we earlier traced it, one of the earliest challenges which confronted the administration, as far as the Education Sub-Sector was the stark reality that the examining body in question; the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) was withholding the results of the state’s candidates in the 2009 / 2010 edition of the West African Secondary School Certificate Examinations (WASSCE); due, as they claimed to non-remittance of
the specified entrance fees for the examinations. In spite of its newness in governance, and in spite of the backlog of debts the nascent administration met on ground, it measured up to the task of paying up the debt incurred on account of the examinations by the ousted administration of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP). As subsequent years of the administration unfolded, even till the recent past, not only did the RaufAregbesola administration cater to this vital need of the youth, the many flaws it had notwithstanding. One major problem with growth and development in contemporary Nigeria is that corruption is a cankerworm that has eaten deep into our fabric; and the cabal of corruption is so fierce and resistant that they easily demonize any attempt to right wrongs to the benefit of all. SUN DEFENDER Magazine observes that attempts by the Aregbesola administration to curb leakages so as to maximize welfare to all is the “crime” the administration has committed against the cabal that had hitherto held the society captive. While the practice of rag-bag payment lasted, some elements of the society benefitted to the full; so much they nearly rendered the society insolvent! Now that all excesses are being curbed, they are left with no visible option than staging resistance in the order of calling the dog a bad name in order to hang it. To be continued
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 19, 2016
often say that God Loves Nigeria. I am even more comfortable now than ever before to say same. People are very quick to controvert; and this is premised on the parlance of self-delusion of a superior standpoint. However, if anybody still tries to convince me again and again that there is any country in the whole wide world appreciated and loved by God more than by beloved country Nigeria, I will tell the person that he must be operating in the world of fantasy. Please wait before you vilify me. I will be waiting for a superior argument before any idea of capitulation. If it is possible for Nigeria to still remain an entity; and it was made possible to survive all the diatribe onslaughts that we have faced and survived through as a nation, I must then actually be speaking the mind of the Creator, Who has graciously made it to be so for us. I have been clearly conscious of national events for about four decades. From the point of celebrating the tenth anniversary of Nigeria’s independence in 1970 (which also coincidentally marked the end of the civil war in Nigeria); when a bottle of 7up and a bowl of rice and meat to go with it were given to us. Till date, I have given rapt attention to unfolding events in this country. Many nations of the world have gone through some experiences which are similar to ours but less in magnitude. They have either been thrown in disarray by the harmer of disintegration, or they are still engaging in the fratricidal war till date. Rwandan and Congolese people are better asked. Peradventure some people may take me to task on the issue of these two countries of African descent, then I better tell concerned citizens that Germany is still facing fertility problem till date as a result of the Second World War. No wonder, the replacement level fertility and the general fertility rate in Germany remain low till now. became so confused recently, that I engaged myself in special prayer for my dear country. My worry was precipitated by different war songs being sung by notable members of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC). Some of those I cared to listen to bared their minds on how they have suffered for the party prior to, during, and after the 2015 electioneering. I did tell them that I also had my portion of victimization and vindictiveness when the then ruling-Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) stormed my arena to wrongfully accuse me of unknown political malfeasance of partisanship. Most of us saw how those who toiled minimally for the success of PDP at the polls enjoyed what they usually refer to
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By ADEOLU GBOTEMI
Before We Crucify Aisha
in the immediate and future successes of the party that struggled to wrest power from the seemingly erstwhile indomitable Peoples Democratic Party. Whatever defence our President has for disregarding the efforts of party stalwarts and the internal counsel of his wife must be measured in the rational court of public domain. We are at a critical point in our national history, which actually calls for aggregation of concerted efforts of all those who wish the nation well to get out of the troubled water of recession soonest. No doubt, our President has been working assiduously, but the saboteurs in his government, who may not bother whether his image gets dented or not, must be weeded out of the system. I remember the success story of Mr Buhari in his first shot at ruling this country cannot be complete without the mention of his second-incommand, Tunde Idiagbon’s name. HAT is why it was commendable for him to have brought in the likes of Babatunde Fashola and Audu Ogbe; and a few others who are now helping in the task of rejuvenating our battered economy. So far, nobody can fault Fashola’s progress in the areas of power, roads, and housing subject to availability of funds; ditto for Audu Ogbe in the effort to diversify our national economy through agricultural renaissance. Mrs Aishat Buhari must understand very well her husband of twenty seven years. The kind of character traits that she admires in her husband may sometimes not be suitable for the goals of economic turnaround being sought after. The kind of inherent obstinacy in the nature of Buhari may also constitute a weak point that others who want to play smart one on him can leverage on to arrogate power and benefits to themselves. What should be paramount in the heart of everyone is how our country will be revived out of the woods. No matter how good one is, there are weak points that must be worked upon. It is on this premise that I want our President to consider the positive aspect of Aisha’s interview. She will definitely not wish her husband; the father of all her children any evil. However naïve a woman is, the inherent positive endowment is also there to explore. The confidence Mr President has in his female cabinet members should be extended to the wife at home, so that the balancing efforts can work for the good of all. This unfolding scenario must be assessed in the light of God’s love for Nigeria that is still potent.
as ‘booty of politics.’ We were of the opinion that appointments into positions of some of party stalwarts will cause goodies to trickle down. To our bewilderment till date, a negligible number of those who toiled for party success at polls managed to get a little to manage on self-survival. It was a thing of great relief therefore, when the wife of the President; Aishat Buhari, vented her spleen on her husband concerning perceived marginalization of those who struggled for the emergence of APC as the ruling party. So many reactions had greeted the opinion of Mrs Buhari on issues that bothered on party survival and succession programming. The ‘Go Slow’ approach of Mr President and the attendant people’s negative reactions are well-known to his better-half. The appropriate thing to do, many perceived would have been to call her husband’s attention to them in their inner chamber through her naturally endowed gender power. Truly speaking, women possess the unique instrument of hegemonic influence over their spouses. Any man that wants to prove to be wiser and choose to discountenance the persuasion of the wife is towing the precipice of doom. It is probably the failure of President Buhari to heed the calls of his wife over perceived corrigenda that prompted the granting of interview to the British
Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) the way she did last week. ET me reiterate here that Madam Buhari has the incontrovertible temerity to do what she has done for many reasons: first, Aisha Buhari is supposed to be the closest person to President Buhari by virtue of being the only woman in his life. To the best of my knowledge, she is not the ceremonial wife, as it was the practice of some of our past leaders, who used to keep other wives in the ‘cooler’, while the most beautiful would be showcased as the ‘First Lady’. The second reason is that she was a pillar, (and so she remins) for her husband prior to the green light shone on the way to Aso Rock, the seat of power. She was all over the place for the party and her husband when campaign steam boisterously gathered momentum. Thirdly, Aisha is a full blooded Nigerian citizen, who has the right to call the attention of our President to issues of national unity and survival. Another reason is that since the coming to power of President Buhari till date, only Messrs Daura and Kyari have been calling the shots, albeit allegedly in contravention of the change mantra principle, in and around Aso Rock to the chagrin displeasure of those who really worked for the success of the APC and Buhari at the polls. Lastly, she is likely to be a party woman with vested interest
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