The First Lady of Ondo State, Mrs. Betty Akeredolu, has urged the need by government and all relevant organisations to accord sound education the prime place. She identified investment in education as one of the major requirements for the development of the economy.
Mrs. Akeredolu spoke recently during the flag-off of the bursary and scholarship award for students by the Ondo State Oil Producing Agency and Development Commission, (OSOPADEC).
The governor’s wife, who hailed the students for having distinguished themselves in their various fields of study, advised them to continue to concentrate on their studies.
She said: “I must congratulate you. Governor Oluwarotimi Akeredolu recognises the role education plays in lifting an individual out of poverty; he recognises that education helps an individual to climb the social ladder. So, it is indeed regrettable that these students in the past had to fight before they could get what they deserve.
“Every sensible government must recognise that education is the right of every student. It is the students that form the population that will propel the economy. If you don’t train them, how is that possible?
Governor Akeredolu recognises this as his government is about doing things differently. We need to have a paradigm shift by moving to do things from old ways to new ways that are progressive. I can say that this is a starter.”
OSOPADEC Chairman, Mr. Gbenga Edema, hailed the governor for approving the 2014/2015 bursary for the student without delay.
He said: “The essence of this programme is to celebrate with students in tertiary institutions across the state. A total of 5,227 students benefited from this bursary -PhD students, 36; Masters’ students, 104; Law students, 19; PGD students, 16.
Two thousand five hundred and ninety three undergraduates from universities and polytechnics benefited from the scheme. Eight hundred ninety eight and seven hundred and seventy-seven from colleges of education and seven hundred and eighty four from health institutions also benefited from it.
“I am elated that we have flagged off this payment to students in our mandate area – in Ilaje and Ese Odo. Rather than bursary, we will advocate for more money for scholarship. We are going to jack up the money ascribed to scholarship as we want to achieve excellence as from the next season.”
At the event were students union members led by the President, National Association of Ilaje Students, Oguntibeju Owolemi, who commended the state government and the board for the gesture.