By: Adesola Ikulajolu
The National Association Nigerian Students (NANS) Ondo Axis has written to the Ondo State Government over the proposed plan to increase tuition fee.
A statement was released by the Chairman, Comrd. Adebowale Azeez to address the issue.
Below is the Statement:
Your Excellency, a Stitch in Time, Saves Nine
Your Excellency now is the right time you make yourself approachable and responsive to constructive opinions and must not be petty, but fair, firm and decisive. As a cultured Yoruba man, I know it’s you elders who say if a child defecates, obvious common sense suggests that the parents should rush to a place of convenience to clean the child. It is assumed that the common good takes precedence over all actions and not the parent’s ability to bear the offensive odour. Ruling Ondo state is a very serious and tasking business. Ondo is far bigger than personal relationships. And anyone who does not understand this does not understand Ondo state at all.
Sir, I am writing you in respect of the proposed hike in tuition of state-owned tertiary institutions which has commenced in Ondo State School of Science and Technology (OSUSTECH). Your recently appointed Chair of Adekunle Ajasin University, Akungba Akoko Governing Council, Dr. Tunji Abayomi, has only used his office to make a judgmental pronouncement on AAUA fee hike. This pronouncement would have been ignored, but for its obvious links to the same views expressed by some other government officials.
Dr. Tunji Abayomi threw his integrity as a proven activist away into the bin of inconsequential history in his desperate attempt to promote your narratives.
The entire Ondo state students are seriously angry and worried about this proposed hike in Tuition fees across Ondo state institutions.
Before it is too late, Mr. Governor, you must address all these issues to calm the frayed nerves of the already infuriated and visibly furious Nigerian Students boiling with rage and anger.
Mr. Governor, if increasing tuition fees in Ondo state won’t grow our GDP, then there’s no point increasing our fees thereby placing more hardship on the already improvised students of Ondo state. We have to understand that our National goals can be achieved using education as a tool.
As a background, Arakunrin, you were a beneficiary of free education policy, so it beats my imagination why you should deny this generation of the absolutely free and qualitative education you benefitted from.
Let’s not create the impression that there’s no money in this state to the citizens of Ondo state. For crying out loud, we have all the resources and what it takes to conveniently offer free education to the people of Ondo state. Putting it to judicious use is the bane of our society. How do we explain you getting over Seven Hundred Million naira(#700,000,000) monthly as Security vote while our schools lack funds to power generating sets? If the status quo remains, Your Excellency, you might need to double your vote on security as students will resort to self-help.
We understand Education is an expensive social service and requires adequate financial provision from all the tiers of government for successful implementation. And financing education is a joint responsibility of the state government, local government and in some cases the private sector.
Just in One year, the administration you lead has increased tuition fee in Ondo State University of Science and Technology and also discontinued the payment of West African Examination Council fee of Final year students of Public secondary schools in Ondo state. We begin to wonder your real intents for our dear Sunshine State.
Instead of creating wrong impressions and increasing the political temperature among Ondo state citizens, friends and family of the State that the government is perturbed or perhaps confused, the government should try and do some financial re-engineering in its budget which can substantially improve positive educational outcome in students by placing emphasis on consulting expert opinions, focusing on outcome of its decisions and Adopting a data-based problem solving intervention. Nigeria students do not want to assume the government is confused as this administration need to be purposeful and enlightened.
The task ahead of the government calls for sacrifices and self-discipline at all levels of the government.
Sir, we wish to implore the government to build a truly democratic state in which all the students and good citizens of the state will live in peace and freedom, where our rights and aspirations will be respected and protected. Your administrations should vigorously pursue the promotion of peace across our tertiary institutions and our communities at large.
We believe and feel strongly committed to the free education policy of Obafemi Awolowo, Pa Adekunle Ajasin(your kinsman), Tai Solarin among others so therefore, Mr. Governor we can pay these heroes no better tribute than to continue in the spirit with which they had led the country in time past by the uniquely positioned educational standards used to prepare students in order to be able to meet the demands of the world in which they live in which today you are a bonafide and proud product of that system.
And in other, for our generation not to be a personification of what Prof. Wole Soyinka referred to as “wasted generation” then you should not commercialize education in Ondo state.
Looking at the beneficial effect of free education, we will have more Senior Advocates of Nigeria who can draft deeds of conveyance like our dear Governor, we will have more accountants who can balance books, language graduates who can translate letters and of course pressmen who will mind their business.
Despite the inexplicable and the barbaric attitude of the students’ of Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Owo RUGIPO, we will not support a government who cannot resist the temptation of keeping our best Polytechnic in Nigeria which current session started in 2016 and absurdly still runs into 2018. It’s been closed down until further notice.
Had the polytechnic remained closed much longer, it is conceivable that we will have more miscreants, internet fraudsters, prostitutes, drug dealers, cultism and many more vices among our youths in Ondo state.
Thanks in anticipation of your prompt and favourable response.
Yours in students’ emancipation,
Adewunmi Azeez Adebowale
Chairman NANS/JCC Ondo State Axis