Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu on Saturday disclosed that his administration has expended huge investment on education in the last six years.
The Governor noted that education is one of the cardinal responsibilities of his administration, saying it is a social debt to the people.
OYO NEWS reports that the Governor spoke at the maiden convocation ceremony of the Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology, Okitipupa (OAUSTECH) held at the University main Auditorium.
A total of 982 graduands from six sets, 2014/2015, 2015/2016, 2016/2017, 2017/2018, 2018/2019 and 2019/2020 sessions earned the University’s first degrees. A total of 26 graduands made First Class.
Governor Akeredolu said his administration at inception was alarmed with the deplorable condition of things in the University especially in terms of roads, buildings and other essential facilities connected to a conducive learning environment.
“This informed our resolve to change the narrative, by immediately commencing a gradual, radical and systematic implementation of the State Government’s Strategic Plan for the university.
“I am delighted to recall that within our 100 days in office, we facilitated the asphalt overlay of the first phase of the university road network and inaugurated same for use. We have also recently approved the construction of a 2.5 kilometre road network for the University which has achieved about 75% level of completion.” the Governor said.
Governor Akeredolu stressed that as part of his administration’s intervention, he has released funds for the completion of some major building projects which were abandoned for almost a decade.
According to him, the projects completed include the University Senate Building, the University Library and the University Auditorium.
He declared his resolve to open up other similar abandoned projects which shall be completed in batches as the state’s finances improve.
Governor Akeredolu, who said it is a new era in OAUSTECH, assured that his administration has not relented in supporting the university in all spheres.
“To this end, our administration has tremendously supported in the university’s quest for TETFund funding. Today, we are all happy that the university has started to have the presence of TETFund projects while more opportunities are underway.
“We have also noted that within the last six years of our administration, OAUSTECH, which used to offer courses only in the School of Science, has added courses in two additional schools: School of Engineering and Engineering Technology and the School of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources.
“All courses offered by the university in the three schools have been accredited by the National Universities Commission (NUC). I commend the university management and Council for these achievements”, the Governor said.
The combined Convocation ceremony also had in attendance, some members of the State Executive Council led by the Secretary to the State Government, Princess Oladunni Odu; Pro-Chancellor/Chairman, Governing Council of the University, Professor Akinbo Adesomoju; Governing Council members; Vice Chancellor, Professor Temi Ologunorisa; Principal officials; invited guests; other members of staff; graduands; parents and other dignitaries.
Governor Akeredolu specifically lauded former Governor of the State, late Dr. Olusegun Agagu, adding that his special passion, commitment and magnanimity had made the establishment of the university a reality for the benefit of the entire people of Ondo State and the people of the Ondo State Southern Senatorial District in particular.
While congratulating the graduating students and their parents on the occasion, Governor Akeredolu charged the graduands to go out and project, distil and exhibit the glowing tendencies that they have adopted while in school.
“I expect that by now, you all have the capacity and the emotional intelligence to handle every situation of life. There is no doubt in my mind that all of you have the potential to transform our State and indeed our country by putting to use and continuing to develop the training and experiences which you have garnered during your stay in this university.” the Governor stressed.
Earlier in his address, the Pro-Chancellor/Chairman, Governing Council of the University, Professor Akinbo Adesomoju, took time to commend the Visitor to the University and Ondo State Governor, Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, for his non- relenting efforts at improving the institution through many interventions, especially in terms of infrastructural developments.
He said the present administration has been able to complete several previously abandoned capital projects in the University including the Main Auditorium, development of internal road network among several others.
The combined Convocation also witnessed conferment of a Postgraduate Degree of Doctor of Business Administration (Honoris Causa) of the University on the Chancellor of the institution and Olugbo of Ugboland, Oba (Dr) Frederick Akinruntan, in recognition of his success stories in the global business environment.