Reopen Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso, Nigeria
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It has been over 7 months now since Staffs and Students of Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, LAUTECH embarked on a tsunami internal strike leaving scores of youths (Leaders of NOW) Life stagnant and halting their prospect. To call the attention of the Federal Government, National Universities Commission, National Assembly, Osun State Government and Oyo State Government on the lingering dispute between Oyo State Government and Osun state government practically cowing the future of over 30,000 Nigeria youths schooling in this citadel I deem it imperative to forward this petition to the aforementioned bodies not as a student of the citadel but as a concern citizen.
Any impartial observer would admit that the country’s education has in the past three decades taken a very big tumble, and nowhere is this rot more apparent than in the tertiary institutions which include universities and polytechnic unlike the golden days where we can fetch fire wood from the bush and pay our tuition fee but now we have to sell our properties, take loan from banks and get help from Family friends to have a qualitative education. This was all Laudokites seek for, few years back while filling their JAMB form, they only wanted to be admitted, Spend the required 5 Years in the citadel of learning and have themselves a heavenly future. Have they asked for too much? But with trepidation, shoddy and venal manner have Osun State Government /Oyo State Government and Federal government dealt with the demands of these students.
With the present situation, it looks like both sides are bracing up for a long winter of discontent, while the fate of innocent students now languishing in their parents’ homes has become of little or no importance to them. These students now have no or very little faith in Education, many who Have the available resources at their fingertips are now schooling abroad, private universities while many others which covers 90.99% of the affected students are waiting patiently for the news, many Impatient who choose not to deal with the frustration are now into many illicit act such as cyber crime fondly called Yahoo Yahoo. For how long shall our government continue to indirectly nurse and build criminals into the community?
The time to call off the circus is now. The good news these students are waiting for can be best dished out now. Nothing can be achieved by prolonging the agonies of students and their parents. We may not ascribe the present posturing to politics, but in a situation where all manner of voices are beginning to be heard in a purely academic matter, it would not be wrong inferring that the strike is being employed to serve some narrow political ends. Oyo state government must stand tall now and accept responsibility(ies) while Osun strate government must gladly take up the Barton and lead aright. The federal government has a very pivotal role to play Here either by autonomously taking up the university or help in funding the university, the fact is that fees hike has never solved the challenges of underfunding in LAUTECH or any other tertiary institution. Rather, it has always deprived students from poor backgrounds access to affordable education and this can never be an exception.
It is all over the news that the students will be staging a mass protest on 9th of January 2017. I want to be positive here and not envisage any doom ahead but knowing fully well that even the World War ended on a round table as a young socialist and concerned citizen I hereby join my voice with millions of crying youths out there to appeal to Osun State Government, Oyo State Government, Federal Government to please ReOpen LAUTECH.
Dio Peter Omotolani
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