Funmi Olaitan, Ibadan
Oyo State government on Thursday said, Tuesday, November 21, 2017, is the date for the launch of its Education Trust Fund (ETF), saying the fund is the effective and viable solution to the malaise of the education sector in the state.
Chairman of Oyo ETF, Mrs Onikepo Akande, made the disclosure while addressing journalists at the Ministry of Information, Culture and Tourism film theatre, aimed at shedding light on activities of the establishment and soliciting the cooperation of corporate bodies, associations and individuals in raising the standard and quality of education in Oyo State.
She assured of accountability and judicious use of the fund, adding that ,“I am a two-time Minister in the country and I do not know the address of any anti-graft agency. I want to assure you that any fund received will be judiciously used for infrastructure in schools such as classrooms, libraries, laboratories and ICT. The fund will also be used for capacity building for teachers and students and in general, improve the quality of education to an enviable standard.”
The former Minister of Industry noted that it is an open secret that education today in the state needs strategic intervention, stressing “what we have in the education sector in Oyo State is a total departure from what it used to be. To continue to restore the lost glory of education in the state as evidenced by the recent best WASSC result in 18 years, urgent and deliberate action must follow this feat”
According to her, the strategic intervention of the state government gave birth to the OYO ETF on July 10, 2017 which is an Education Trust Fund with the objective of seeking and pooling funds from government, corporate bodies, associations, donor organisations and philanthropists in a bid to provide financial leverage in education financing in the state.
Akande further explained that in order to be able to accomplish the set objectives of OYETF, a needs assessment is ongoing that will determine the levels and quantum of intervention in the education sector.
She added that though people have shown interest in partnering with OYO ETF in order to ensure that the state returns to its rightful place on the ladder of education in Nigeria, more support is being sought for the intervention to penetrate all parts of the state.
Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Mr. Toye Arulogun, said the state government is conscious of the need to urgently revamp the education sector in the state, adding that efforts will continue to be made to revive the legacy of education left by heroes past.
According to him, the government will not rest on its oars in putting in place policies and framework that will lead to the emergence of the education sector that will be a pride to every resident and indigene of the state.