Ekiti Targeting Zero Per Cent Out-of-School Children Population – Oyebanji

The Ekiti State governor, Biodun Oyebanji, on Thursday, said he would ensure that every child in the state has access to quality and compulsory education, insisting that education remains a weapon in ensuring social, political, and economic growth of any society.

Oyebanji made this known at the 28th Convocation Ceremony of Ekiti State University held on the university campus.

He recalled that Ekiti was recently ranked as the highest in school enrolment in the country, saying that his government would continue to ensure the state had zero percent out-of-school children in the country.

Oyebanji also urged the university management to justify the increase in their subvention by showing greater commitment to work, avoiding incessant strike actions, and allowing for smooth running of the academic calendar so that students were not unduly delayed.

While congratulating the graduands, Oyebanji charged them to always remember to give back to their alma mater.

“We are gathered here today to celebrate scholarship, success, and the result of hard work. As we all know, education remains a weapon in ensuring social, political, and economic growth in any society. This is why we will continue to support the education sector. We are committed to ensuring our educational institutions are of the highest standards that can compete globally.

“A demonstration of this commitment can be seen in our various interventions in the sector from primary to tertiary institutions. It is, therefore, a thing of pride to note that Ekiti is ranked one of the highest in school enrollment in Nigeria and one of the states with the least out-of-school children with 2.5%. We are working hard to ensure we have 0% out-of-school children in our state,” he said.

Earlier in his address, the newly inaugurated Chancellor of the University, Tunji Olowolafe, who appreciated the governor for the opportunity to serve, pledged his unflinching commitment to the growth and development of the institution.

Olowolafe, a trained medical doctor-turned businessman, announced a 1billion naira innovation fund to empower agro-technology companies founded by the latest graduands and current students of the institution.

This is in addition to the establishment of an endowment agenda to offer support and subsidies for up to 30 academic staff members so as to facilitate their participation in international conferences, training sessions, and research activities as well as creation of a platform for 100 of the brightest students from EKSU to engage in resourceful and sustainable work for skill acquisition and development.

Olowolafe noted that it had become imperative for graduates and undergraduates in Nigeria to get actively involved in activities geared towards supporting food security, innovation and strategic entrepreneurship in the current circumstance.