Oyo State governor, ‘Seyi Makinde, has declared that his administration has successfully laid the necessary foundations, which successive administrations can build on with regards to the infrastructure, education and the economy of the state.
The governor maintained that his government had pulled the state out of the trenches and would continue to build on the gains already recorded, noting, however, that if previous administrations had laid the necessary framework, his government would not have had to start from scratch.
Governor Makinde stated this in Iseyin, on Friday, during the commissioning of the College of Agriculture and Renewable Natural Resources, a campus of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, started and completed by his government.
At the event, which had in attendance a former president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, the governor said: “Let me mention that this commissioning of the LAUTECH Iseyin Campus in Iseyin exemplifies what happens when we have existing infrastructure, whether they are physical or administrative, to build on.
“People have been commenting that Oyo State should be building an internal rail system, and I said, yes, that is something we should be doing. If the previous administrations had laid the framework as they did in Lagos, then, we would not come in and have to lay the foundation again.
“So, I am happy that, in the last four years, we have been able to pull Oyo State out of the trenches to a large extent, and we will continue to take sustainable actions, which the next administration can build on.
“We now have LAUTECH, Iseyin Campus. Maybe the next administration would build LAUTECH Oyo and situate the Communication Campus of the University there. Just a thought! It may be moved to Saki or Ibarapa, I don’t know. But, for me and for us as an administration, we have laid a solid foundation that others can be built on.”
Former President Obasanjo, who had earlier commissioned the 34.85 kilometres Oyo-Iseyin Road, after which he joined the governor to inspect the ongoing Fasola Agribusiness Industrial Hub, Oyo and also commissioned the LAUTECH Campus, equally praised the governor for being a promise keeper.
Obasanjo hailed Makinde for the developments in and around Iseyin, including the Oyo-Iseyin Road, the redevelopment of the Fasola Farms and the LAUTECH Campus.
Earlier in his speech, Governor Makinde said his administration had envisioned making Oyo State the education hub of the country and that it has now succeeded by using its resources to achieve that vision.
He added that the siting of the College in Iseyin was a strategic decision, noting that the state’s plan to expand its economy through agribusiness meant that the new College of Agriculture and Renewable Natural Resources being in Iseyin, Oke-Ogun, which is the food basket of the state, is another step towards achieving the state’s target.
“This is another landmark project we have invested in here in Iseyin. When we came into office in 2019, we planned to make Oyo State an education hub. For us, it is not just about increasing the number of universities in the state.
“We used to have one and a half universities when we came in; the Technical University and half of LAUTECH because it was jointly owned by Oyo and Osun states. But today, we have doubled the institutions as we now have the Technical University, which is fully owned by Oyo State, the LAUTECH and Emmanuel Alayande University of Education fully owned by Oyo State.
“So, it is not just about all of these universities but the fact that what we have done is to use our available resources to achieve our vision. Building on that, we took a multi-campus approach to expand LAUTECH.
“And to ensure both campuses of LAUTECH are connected, we are constructing a brand new road, the 76.67km Iseyin-Fapote-Ogbomoso road, which is about 80 per cent done, and I will come back here to commission that road before the end of this year,” the governor said.
He also explained that the decision to make LAUTECH a multi-campus institution was also taken in order to achieve an accelerated development for the state, saying that the new development would have multiplier effects on the economy of Iseyin and Oke-Ogun.
He said the zone will be opened to more economic activities as about 1,533 students resume in the College in the next few weeks.