By INWALOMHE DONALD
Governor Aregbesola’s bold and brilliant initiative has changed the face of schools in Osun State. I want to use this medium to appeal to National Universities Commission (NUC) to grant university provisional licences to Osun steel structure high schools in Ilesa, Iwo and Osogbo, that can last for more than 100 years so as to expand access to, and improve the quality of facilities available for higher education in Nigeria. These steel school structures are capable of meeting the requirements for full university operational licenses.
Ilesa, Osogbo and Iwo High Schools have the required standards to operate as universities in Nigeria. There is nowhere in Africa that you can see steel structure high schools like the types in Ilesa, Iwo and Osogbo. I challenge anybody to prove me wrong as Aregbesola has taken a bold step to change the face of high schools in Africa. None of the 12 Federal Universities established in February 2011 by the Federal Government of Nigeria can boast of such structure.
Ondo and Edo States have three state-owned universities each and, based on what Aregbesola has done, NUC should please grant licence to Osun State to operate more state universities.
Osun structural steel schools are the first in Africa with 216 classrooms, 3 ICT halls, 18 laboratories and others that have the capacity to bear great loads in tension and compression, high resiliency and performance under harsh and difficult conditions. Osun steel high schools can be shaped by many processes, ranging from standard rolled sections to custom castings and digitally generated components. Osun steel high schools are wide, the buildings’ cladding highlight their durability, technical capabilities and aesthetic versatility. Osun State is the first to build steel structure schools in Africa that can accommodate more than 9,000 students.
Osun steel structure new high schools are part of the series of the state-of-the-art schools currently being constructed across the state. With Ilesa, Osogbo and Iwo steel structure sukuk high schools, Aregbesola’s government is committed to Osun schools a model in Nigeria, Africa and the entire world.
Another good thing is that Osun Steel High schools can be easily modified during the lifecycle of a building to accommodate changing occupant requirements. As the most recycled material in the world, steel is an environmentally sound building material choice. Today, structural steel is 97% recycled with the primary source being automobiles. Architects praise the natural beauty of Osun steel schools and are excited about exposing them in the design of their structures to emphasise grace, slenderness and strength.
President Muhammadu Buhari last year described the newly completed steel structure Osogbo Government High school as an educational legacy that should be emulated by other states of the federation.
The steel buildings have many advantages, such as large span/low demand of base structure, seismic and wind resistance, fast construction and easy maintenance. The walls of the steel structure building are also flexible, You can choose colored steel plate or EPS/PU/XPS sandwich panel as your wall system. The products can be packed in one package, are easy to upload, download and stack on the site.
They can be built on many special places such as mountains, beaches and land with bad condition.
Built from steel, the schools took some months to build instead of the two years required for a more conventional structure. Many tonnes of steel were used to build the site. Unemployed workers from the township were employed on the projects, with between 60-80 on site each day. The steel structure can be produced in kit form, allowing quick and easy assembly. All three schools were built using light weight steel and Arval panels with a view to promoting the use of steel in domestic buildings.
The prototype buildings at Ilesa, Osogbo and Iwo prove that steel can be used cost effectively and aesthetically. The lesson is that Aregbesola has demonstrated that the three steel structure schools are excellent examples of what can be achieved with steel in the construction environment and my wish is that it will ensure an iron-clad future for the students of the State.
The other sukuk High Schools are: Wole Soyinka High School, Ejigbo, Ataoja High School, Osogbo, Fakunle Unity High School, Osogbo, Oduduwa High School, Ile Ife, Ila High School, Ila-Orangun, Adventist High School, Ede, Iwo, Akinorun High School, Ikirun and Ayedaade High School, Ikire. What is unique about Osun State High Schools is that each of them has the capacity to take off as a state university.
I want to plead with NUC to visit Osun State Steel Structure High Schools in Iwo, Ilesa and Osogbo.
Donald writes from Benin City