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Oyetola lists students’ interests, others as motives behind LAUTECH hand over

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

Weeks after ceding Ladoke Akintola University of Technology ( LAUTECH) Ogbomoso, to Oyo State, the Osun State Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola, said that decision to sign off the institution was to protect interest of both states and students that needed the institution to actualise their dream.

Oyetola added that the decision to end face-off between both states was also taken to protect the interest of management and staff of the institution that over the years ensured LAUTECH rise in status above other institutions.

The governor, who listed the motive behind the ceding the institution to Oyo when the State Governor, Seyi Makinde, paid him a courtesy visit at his office in Osogbo, on Monday, stated that the student education and staff welfare were often affected by the incessant crises over ownership of the school.

He noted that the decision to sign off the institution required him to rise above political and primordial sentiments in order to protect the unity of the Yoruba nation.

While disclosing that Osun state government had fully discharged its responsibilities towards LAUTECH before its exit, Oyetola said that the government looks forward to the 12-month Transition Arrangement to address all issues that could arise over ownership separation.

The governor assured the Osun indigenes that were students and staff of the institution that their interest was already well protected in the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed by both states.

He said: “It’s important to note that this decision was reached in the best interest of the two states, the students, staff, and management LAUTECH. I also want to reassure Osun citizens working at LAUTECH that the ceding of the institution to Oyo State won’t affect their jobs.

“They will retain all rights & obligations, as stipulated in their letters of engagement. Osun students at the university will also not be discriminated against & will not be subjected to fees or admission differentials”, the governor added.

Earlier, Makinde reiterated that indigenes of Oyo and Osun state working in the institution would retain all rights and privileges stipulated in their letters of engagements and that the security of their jobs was guaranteed.

He, however, commended  Oyetola, for the role he played in finding a permanent solution to the many years of joint ownership crises of LAUTECH and that without the leadership quality displayed by Oyetola, the problem could not have been resolved.

It would be recalled that the National Universities Commission (NUC) recently handed over ownership of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso, to the Oyo State Government while the Osun state Government took over the College of Health Sciences in Osogbo.

Makinde explained that the crisis that has over the years affected the institution was the joint ownership and that funding had become challenging in terms of funding and management leading to constant friction and disruptions in the university.

“What was important was to get results, get our children back to school, get the university to a point where it can fulfill its mandate which is to train children who would be instrumental to the development of the State and the nation at large. That, we are now on track to achieving.

“Also, we have had instances when identical parties held sway in Oyo and Osun, yet this issue was not resolved. But here we are today, PDP and APC  have worked together and solved the problem. So, we are all winners in this matter.

“I came to thank Governor Oyetola because without him playing the role of a statesman, we could not have solved the problem. Generations yet unborn will continue to value the role you played in resolving this issue.

“In LAUTECH, there is no longer Oyo Forum or Osun Forum. There is now only LAUTECH Forum. So, both Osun and Oyo States’ students in the institution will continue to enjoy the privileges of the owner states. There will be no discrimination, the fee structure remains the same and we look forward to the products of LAUTECH, whether from Oyo or Osun, contributing their quota to the progress and development of our states and Nigeria at large”, Makinde added.

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