Suspected Killers Of UNIOSUN Student Remanded In Prison

By Nofisat Adeoye

An Osun State High Court presided by Justice Kudirat Akano has ordered that the five suspects arrested in connection with the murder of Timileyin Olufemi Sonibare, a four hundred level, microbiology student of Osun State University, UNIOSUN, be remanded in prison custody.

The suspects who had also been arraigned before a Magistrate Court were charged with three counts charge of conspiracy, murder and misconduct with corpse which are contrary to section 516, 319, 242 and punishable under section 319(1) of Criminal Code Cap 34, Laws of Osun State, 2002.

The accused persons, Abdurafiu Zakariyah, Yusuf Kareem, Aruba Ibrahim,  Ishaq Yusuf and Abdulkareem Adeoti were alleged to have killed Sonibare for purposes of money rituals on the 26th of June 2017, at Jafariyah Avenue, Oke-Bale Area in Osogbo.

The deceased head and right hand were cut and burnt inside a pot which was caught with the first suspect, Zakariyah.

When paraded by the police, the first suspect had confessed that he carried out the act together with one yahayah who is still at large and with the second and third suspects.
Zakariyah also confessed that the account book for the procedure of money rituals was gotten from the 5th suspect, Adeoti.

However, on further investigation, the pot used in burning the deceased body parts was recovered from the house of the 4th suspect, Yusuf.

Speaking in court today, the counsels for the accused persons, Barrister Badmus Kazeem and Barrister Abayomi Alayoku prayed the court for the bail of their clients in the most liberal terms.

Justice Kudirat, however, remanded the accused persons in prison custody and adjourned the case till the 15th of December, 2017.
She also ordered that the counsels come by way of written bail application on the adjourned date.

Fraud In Uniosun: Parliament Investigates Contracts’ Award Processes

The State of Osun House of Assembly has commenced investigation into the financial activities of the authorities of Osun State University, with a view to unravelling the circumstances surrounding the crisis bedeviling the citadel of learning as a result of allegations of fraud.

The house arrived at the decision to probe the financial transactions at a meeting between the House Committee on public Accounts, Management of Osun State University and the Auditor General of the State at the State Assembly Complex Osogbo.

The Chairman House Committee on Public Accounts, Hon. Rasheed Afolabi who led the house committee and the Auditor-General on a fact finding mission to various sites of the multi-campus University expressed dissatisfaction with the quality of work done on some of the projects in the school.

The first project site inspected by the House committee on public accounts together with a representative of Auditor General was the convocation arena at the main campus in Osogbo which was handled by Ibn. Muheeb Construction Company at the cost N45m with additional loan of N8m granted the contractor which was said to have collapsed in 2013 and was reconstructed by the school management.

Also, the committee inspected the Sola Akinrinade’s Library Complex at the main campus where it was revealed that the project was awarded at the cost of N541m to Bentow Bau Construction Company only for the firm to sublet it to De-Kling Construction Company at the rate of N180m.

The committee chairman who expressed concerned over what he described as a non-transparent process of award and shoddy projects execution directed that all documents relating to the contracts be forwarded to the legislature.

He said, “The contractors need to appear before the House to explain and clear some salient issues”.

Another point of call was the library complex at Okuku campus being handled by Atidade Construction Company where structural defects on the project were observed by the committee and on which a number of questions were raised.

On the issue of the roof, which was said to have been blown off sometime in June as observed in the Auditor General’s report, the project Manager Taiwo Olaniyi explained the incident, saying it has been agreed that over N4m expended on repair will be shared between the university and the contractor.

At Ejigbo campus, the committee also inspected the library complex constructed by Ibn Muheeb Construction Company at the cost of N190m. it was discovered that the project handed over in 2010 was under lock and key and said to have been declared unsafe but it was also observed that the walls of the building were already cracking while other parts were about to start caving in.

The committee chairman expressed dissatisfaction on the decision of the school management to give two important projects to a contractor who has litany of bad records and also indicted the school’s Director of Works and the deputy for looking the other way while the design and standard were being compromised.

According to Afolabi, the committee decided to investigate the school management as a result of the audit query raised by the Auditor-General’s office over non-compliance with financial conducts on contracts awards, Acting Appointments and financial Mismanagement.

The house Committee has pledged to invite the affected stakeholders to the plenary to explain their roles in the execution of various projects in the campus.

It would be recalled that the management of Uniosun had in recent times been involved in different financial atrocities, which has put the school in public glare leading to the termination of the appointment of various principal officers of the school.

UNIOSUN: Bad Blood As Council Probe N106m Alleged Fraud Against VC

The probe of the Vice Chancellor, Osun State University, Professor Labode Popoola for alleged financial impropriety to the tune of N106 million has begun to spring bad blood, as the workers’ union of the institution has warned against sweeping the accusations under the carpet. The Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) of the University in a petition to the Governing Council, led by Mallam Yusuff Alli (SAN), dated October 18, 2017 and signed by the Chairman and Acting Secretary of NASU, Comrade Isaiah Fayemi and Comrade Dada Kunmi respectively, has accused Popoola of financial impropriety, alleging that since inception of his tenure in November 2016, he has siphoned and mismanaged the institution’s N106,607,592.00.

 

The Governing Council has reportedly, upon receiving the petition, set up a panel to probe the allegation in its meeting on Friday, 20th October 2017. A copy of the petition titled: “Reasons Why The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Labode Popoola Is After NASU,” said the already syphoned amount “does not include lopsided awards of contracts, inflation of contracts sum, jettisoning of due process in the award of contracts and turning himself to a contractor.

 

The petition read in part, “Permit us to say that we are worried that the VC, Prof. Labode Popoola has been able to successfully commit all these under your watch as the Governing Council Chairman going by your antecedents. We are not also surprised because he (VC) has been boasting that he (VC) is in control of the Governing Council under you watch. Sir, his actions so far also confirmed the statement.

 

“Mr. Chairman Sir, we are reliably informed that the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Labode Popoola has written against NASU to the Governing Council for a sole purpose of blackmailing our union.

 

“If the VC is not predetermined to unjustly deal with NASU in order to cover-up his dirt, why is he monitoring our congress? Or can’t we gather together again as enshrined in Section 40 of Nigerian constitution of 1999 as amended?

 

“All these against NASU, he (VC) is doing because he must have been informed that NASU is the only union that can expose his financial impropriety. Sir, NASU members have refused to be intimidated, humiliated, and victimised by the Vice Chancellor or anyone at the corridor of power because our Union stands for truth, justice, equity and operates with facts and figures.”

 

“We, therefore, call on the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council, Mallam Yusuf Ali and the entire members of Council to do the needful and convince the entire staff of the Osun State University that he (VC) is not in control of the Governing Council. The leadership of NASU UNIOSUN branch will be available to stand by the allegations levelled against the Vice Chancellor even in his presence.

 

But the Vice-chancellor, in his reaction said, the allegations against him was a situation of “corruption fighting back in the university.” He said he had nothing to hide and ready to face the investigative panel.

UNIOSUN: Bad Blood As Council Probe N106m Alleged Fraud Against VC

The probe of the Vice Chancellor, Osun State University, Professor Labode Popoola for alleged financial impropriety to the tune of N106 million has begun to spring bad blood, as the workers’ union of the institution has warned against sweeping the accusations under the carpet.

The Non-Academic Staff Union (NASU) of the University in a petition to the Governing Council, led by Mallam Yusuff Alli (SAN), dated October 18, 2017 and signed by the Chairman and Acting Secretary of NASU, Comrade Isaiah Fayemi and Comrade Dada Kunmi respectively, has accused Popoola of financial impropriety, alleging that since inception of his tenure in November, 2016, he has siphoned and mismanaged the institution’s N106,607,592.00.

The Governing Council has reportedly, upon receiving the petition, set up a panel to probe the allegation in its meeting of Friday, 20th October, 2017.

A copy of the petition tittled: “Reasons Why The Vice Chancellor, Prof. Labode Popoola Is After NASU,” said the already siphoned amount “does not include lopsided awards of contracts, inflation of contracts sum, jettisoning of due process in the award of contracts and turning himself to contractor. “

The petition read in part, “Permit us to say that we are worried that the VC, Prof. Labode Popoola has been able to successfully commit all these under your watch as the Governing Council Chairman going by your antecedents. We are not also surprised because he (VC) has been boasting that he (VC) is in control of the Governing Council under you watch. Sir, his actions so far also confirmed the statement.

“Mr. Chairman Sir, we are reliably informed that the Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Labode Popoola has written against NASU to the Governing Council for a sole purpose of blackmailing our union.

“If the VC is not predetermined to unjustly deal with NASU in order to cover-up his dirt, why is he monitoring our congress? Or can’t we gather together again as enshrined in Section 40 of Nigerian constitution of 1999 as amended.

“All these against NASU, he (VC) is doing because he must have been informed that NASU is the only union that can expose his financial impropriety. Sir, NASU members have refused to be intimidated, humiliated, and victimised by the Vice Chancellor or anyone at the corridor of power because our Union stands for truth, justice, equity and operates with facts and figures.”

“We therefore call on the Pro-Chancellor and Chairman of Council, Mallam Yusuf Ali and the entire members of Council to do the needful and convince the entire staff of the Osun State University that he (VC) is not in control of the Governing Council. The leadership of NASU UNIOSUN branch will be available to stand by the allegations leveled against the Vice Chancellor even in his presence.

But the Vice chancellor, in his reaction said, the allegations against him was a situation of “corruption fighting back in the university.”

He said he had nothing to hide and ready to face the investigative panel.

Osun Commissions University Road…As Alakija Donates N250m To Project Completion

The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, has described the situation where operators of Universities in Nigeria rely on subvention from the owners and burden students with humongous tuition fees as intellectual laziness.

The Governor observed this at the formal opening of the access road to the University of Osun (UNIOSUN), at the entrance to the university in Osogbo.

‎He held that Nigerian universities should adopt world best practices where schools‎ raise funds through endowments, grants and donations from the larger society, which is the primary beneficiary of university education.

‎The Chancellor of UNIOSUN, Chief Mrs Folorunso Alakija was said to have assisted the university with the sum N250 million, which was the exact amount they needed to complete the road project.

‎Aregbesola averred that university funding anywhere in the world is capital intensive and requires helps from philanthropist like Mrs Alakija to boost education system.

He commended Mrs Alakija’s gesture, ‎ saying it is a refreshing perspective on funding for education, particularly the university, which requires a huge financial outlay.

Aregbesola said: “Universities require a large amount for capital projects and not less sum for recurrent expenditure.

“In our intellectually lazy (or idea challenged) environment, the line of least resistance has largely been followed – which is to rely on subvention from the owners and burden the students with humongous tuition fees.

“But the best practices, as we see from other climes, are to raise funds through endowments, grants and donations from the larger society, which is the primary beneficiary of university education anyway.

“Universities also generate revenues through patents, royalties and other intellectual property materials.

“This is why there is a huge gap between per capita spending on students by the Euro-American universities, compared to our own.”

The governor commended UNIOSUN for being on this same path of operating within the framework of intentional standard of running a tertiary institution.
He stated that the university has been self-subsisting for some time now as government has stopped giving any subvention to it.

He added that universities all over the country must wake up to the economic realities of the present time and be creative in sourcing funds to ‎run their institutions.

He also called on other people of good will to emulate the good gesture of Mrs Alakija by contributing to the growth and development of education in the state and country at large.

He equally tasked alumni of the educational institutions in Osun who have education background, to ‎support students of elementary and middle schools in the state as their own contributions to education development.

He continued: “The university has been responsible for generating its own revenue, even when we asked it to review tuition fees downward.

“In light of dwindling revenue and rising cost, universities must be creative in sourcing for funds. The burden of funding education should be spread in the society.

“There are thousands of people who will gladly give money, build roads, donate buildings, endow chairs in the name of a cause, a relation etc. and do many more for education.

In light of this, I must add that contribution is not limited to giving money.

“There are many alumni of our primary and secondary schools who have education background; they should support our students in basic education.
“All they need to do is to volunteer to teach in any of our elementary and middle schools for one hour in a day in English, Mathematics and the Sciences. We need them as volunteers.

“I am therefore commending Dr Alakija for her kind gesture in helping the university to construct this road and for her other interventions in the institution.

“She has etched her name in history and a grateful state, government and people will not forget her good deeds.‎”

In her remarks, the donor, Mrs Alakija, attributed the gesture towards the construction of the university’s access road to her immeasurable passion for education.

She lamented on deplorable state of the nation’s education system, saying it is lamentable and disheartening that no Nigerian University made the list of the first 1000 universities in the world.

According to her: “The education system in Nigeria presently needs urgent assistance and unless there is a major overhaul, the future of the next generation of Nigerians will be bleak.

“As we all know, education is very important for sustaining and developing people. With it, people acquire wisdom and knowledge. They build confidence and develop the ability to fend for themselves from what they have learnt.

“It is also both an instrument of stability and of change; stability in the sense that good traditions are documented, taught, imbibed and practiced; change because it prepares and equips people to meet new challenges. In the same vein, education is a tool for inculcating moral values in the citizens.

“‎The United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Sustainable Development Agenda has identified 17 Global goals, which every nation of the world must strive to accomplish by 2030.

“The 4th goal which is quality education, requires that inclusive and equitable quality education which promote lifelong learning opportunities be made available to all.

“Education is a vision my family and I do not take lightly. This is evidenced by the support we continue to give to students through our Rose of Sharon Foundation where almost 1,500 students benefit from our scholarship program up to university level and the same spirit of which also drove the completion of this project.

While calling on all to support education in the country, Alakija said the attainment of qualitative education will require all of us to pull resources together to make the difference the system so desperately needs.

‎In his welcome address, the Vice Chancellor of the University, Professor Labode Popoola, applauded the philanthropic gestures of the donor, Dr. (Mrs) Folorunso Alakija, describing her as a seasoned philanthropist.

Professor Popoola recalled the steps taken by the management of the institution at constructing an access road to the university’s main campus, saying that the vision led the management of the institution to extend hands of help to the Chancellor.

‎According to him: “One of my first major activities on assumption of duties was a meeting to renegotiate the contract for the construction of this road. I bless the day, 22 March, 2017 when I led my Management Team to our Chancellor, Dr. (Mrs) Folorunso Alakija, in her Lagos Office as part of the preparation towards the 6th Convocation of our University.

“In my briefing, I lamented the state of the access road to our university and the challenge to raise the sum of N250 million to complete the road project
“But three days after the visit, we received the alert of the sum of two hundred and fifty million naira from the school chancellor and for this reason, the chancellor deserves our accolade.

“She is always there for us, her unparalleled benevolence for the completion of this road project is highly commendable. Her unending passion to positively impact humanity is an inspiration for us as an institution.

The Chairman Governing Council of the University and Pro-Chancellor, Mallam Yusuf Ali, also commended the donor, Mrs Alakija, for being passionate about the plights of the institution.

He disclosed that the institution only paid N100 million out of N350 million‎ spent for the construction of the access road.

Mallam Ali however called on well-meaning Nigerians to see the need for supporting education by imbibing the philanthropic life style that could help to advance quality, qualitative and sound education in the country.

“Government alone cannot bear the cost of financing education. Those who run institutions of higher learning should put on their thinking cap and be creative in sourcing for funds to develop these institutions.

“Also, an individual, whom God has materially endowed has shown by the example of our Chancellor, Dr. Folorunso Alakija, could make a lot of difference.

Where the managers of our resources act honestly, transparently and without corruption, men and women of goodwill who are endowed will be more readily disposed to help fund our educational system.‎”

UNIOSUN Medical Students: From Being Stranded To Greatness

In 2013, Governor Rauf Aregbesola-led administration in the State of Osun sponsored 85 stranded Medical Students of the Osun State University (UNIOSUN) to V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Kharkov, Ukraine for the completion of their medical training, as there was no Teaching Hospital in Nigeria to absorb them for their clinical classes. On Saturday, August 12, 2017, the medical students returned to Nigeria as medical doctors, having completed their training.

ISMAIL USMAN chronicles the journey of the young doctors and the successes recorded afterwards.

A 1957-born American activist, Randi Weingarten in one of his public addresses said, “A high-quality public education can build much-needed skills and knowledge. It can help children reach their God-given potential. It can stabilise communities and democracies. It can strengthen economies. It can combat the kind of fear and despair that evolves into hatred.”

When Governor Rauf Aregbesola of the State of Osun was aspiring to contest the governorship election in 2007, he came up with an action plan that has today become the bible and Quran of his administration. One of the manifestoes summarised to ‘Six-point Integral Action Plan’ is “Promotion of functional education”. For Aregbesola, education is number one priority. It is the foundation of development we earnestly work for and it is our passport to that future of enduring socio-economic greatness.’

Education in Osun has been in the limelight, receiving bashes and commendations from members of the public since the inception of Aregbesola’s administration. It is the most critical sector that has projected Aregbesola’s government and at the same time made it controversial because of the innovative ideas brought into the revamping of the sector.

Few days ago, newspapers and social media were awash with news and pictures of the return of medical Students of Osun State University who were sent to Ukraine by the Aregbesola’s administration for medical studies. The government had sent 85 medical students of the Osun State University (UNIOSUN) to the V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Kharkov, Ukraine in January 2013 to study medicine when they could not proceed to clinical class as a result of none-availability of Teaching Hospital in UNIOSUN.

The V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Kharkov was established in 1804 and remains one of the best in Europe. The university has produced three nobel laureates who were trained and had worked with the university.

The first set of the UNIOSUN students were admitted for medicine in September 2007, the second set were admitted in 2008 and the third set were admitted in 2009 during the regime of former Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola. The first, second and third set students were due for clinical class in 2010, 2011 and 2012 respectively.

The students could not go for the clinical class in UNIOSUN because the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) did not approve the class for the university, hence, there was no teaching hospital to absorb them. The development left the students stranded as their fates were hanging in the balance. There was suggestion that Asubiaro General Hospital should be upgraded to a teaching hospital for UNIOSUN, but the Ministry of Health, as it was learnt, objected to the suggestion as it deem it that the general hospital is the secondary healthcare centre in Osogbo and it would be a disservice and counter-productive to give out the hospital to UNIOSUN. Besides, it was estimated that the state government needed more than N1.5billion to upgrade the general hospital to a teaching hospital, while it was also not certain that the MDCN would approve it for the clinical class. Besides, it took the first set of medical students of the Ladoke Akintola University (LAUTECH) seven to ten years to proceed on clinical class, even after Chief Bisi Akande, the Governor of Osun state between 1999-2003 established the teaching hospital with close to N2bn then. What this implies is that the upgrade of the Asubiaro General Hospital, Osogbo could not be a license that the affected UNIOSUN students would proceed on their clinical training immediately.

Governor Aregbesola said the decision to send the 85 (three sets) UNIOSUN medical students to abroad was not easy, but became obligatory when there was no university in Nigeria to absolve the number of affected students. The University of Ibadan, University of Lagos and University of Ilorin were approached, but refused to admit the students for the clinical class. Questions were asked on the rationale behind sending the students to Ukraine. The opposition parties did not spare Aregbesola of accusations and mischievous statements.

Dr Simeon Afolayan, a retired Permanent Secretary in Ministry of Health and Chairman of Osun State Health Committee, explained that “It is true that the National Universities Commission gave the College of Health Sciences of UNIOSUN accreditation. That was, however, not enough to train medical students. If it was, why couldn’t the students sit for the first professional exam that could enable them proceed for clinical training after spending so many years in the pre-clinical classes (Some of the students had been in the university for up to six years by that time). That could not be done because Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria had not given accreditation to the course simply because there was no accreditable teaching hospital in place. What was in place was the State Hospital Asubiaro, which up till now, like most of such hospitals all over the country, is a glorified comprehensive health centre.

“As at that time, LAUTECH teaching hospital, that had been in existence for over 12 years and with all the huge amount of money invested on it, had its accreditation suspended. One can therefore imagine how much money would be required to upgrade Asubiaro to an acceptable standard. The UNIOSUN authorities, with the blessings of the state government, made frantic efforts to contact other universities within the country to take in the students for clinical training. Not one of them could, though they were not unwilling. This was because of fear of exceeding the MDCN quota.

“The students at that stage were faced with only one option: that of having their dreams of becoming medical doctors aborted. Ogbeni Aregbesola would not have this happen to these young people. A committee was set up to find a way forward. It was headed by Her Excellency, Otunba Titi Laoye-Tomori, the Deputy Governor and Commissioner for Education. Members included Hon. Commissioner for Health, Permanent Secretary for Education, Permanent Secretary for Health, the Vice Chancellor UNIOSUN, the Provost College of Health Sciences UNIOSUN, Director of Medical Services SHMB, among others.

“After exhausting possible options, a decision was made to send the students out of the country to complete their medical education. Many countries were considered, including but not limited to USA, UK, Cuba, China, Georgia, Poland, Belarus, Bulgaria, Romania and Ukraine. In fact, the issue about Poland and Ukraine emanated from the University representatives as countries they had considered. Contacts were made and necessary emissaries were sent. A final decision was reached to send the students to Ukraine. The whole process took about 10 months. You will agree with me that this was a record time considering the amount of work needed to be done”, Afolayan recounted.

The students were sent to Ukraine to further their studies in medicine in January, 2013 and the rest today is history.

In June this year, 50 of the UNIOSUN students graduated from the Ukraine University and were certified as medical doctors. One of the medical students, Miss Latifat Abiola Oyeleye was declared the overall best medical student of the Karazin Kharkiv National University as well as the 2017 overall best student in the entire Ukraine with an outstanding score of 95.6% in KROK 2 Exams. The rest of the students will graduate next year.

On Saturday, August 12, 2017, 35 of the medical students came back to Nigeria via the Muritala Muhammed Airport, Lagos. They were received by a state government delegation led by the Commissioner for Innovation, Science and Technology, Engr Remi Omowaiye and Special Adviser to the Governor on Higher Education, Bursary and Scholarship, Prof Grace Akinola. About 15 of the medical students stayed back in Ukraine for future pursuit.

The young medical doctors are: Adegunle Rebecca Temitope, Adekanmbi Bakare Oladipupo, Adekunle Aisha Titilope, Adeleke Abdulsamad, Adetunbi Ebunola Mabel, Adewale Adedoyin Adebimpe, Ajayi Titilayo Temilola, Akinyemi Rukayat Abiola, Awotunde Akinwumi  Gabriel, Eminowa Tomisin Ruth, Faniyi Adeola Omolabake, Garuba Khadijah Abiola, Igbinlade Adedamola Segun, Odejayi Segun Idris, Odewale Bosede Omolara, Ogunbiyi Praise Ajitoronini, Oguntoye Olufemi Kolawole, Ojo Blessing Isaac, Ojo Kafayat Adesewa, Olu-Balogun Vivian Ifeoluwa, Oluwsayo Motunrayo,  Oyelami Omotola Olubunmi, Oyeleye Lateefah Abiola (Overall best student), Shenge Yetunde Olamide, Tijani Aliyu Adekilekun, Adebusuyi  Annetta Gbolayide, Adeyemo Khafilat Kehinde, Afolabi Omotolani Basirat, Ayodele Peace Adetoke, Ezekoye Maria Chizoba, Folarin Marian Olufunmilayo, Obayelu Oluwatobi Cynthia, Ogidi Omareyemi Veronica, Olaoye Serah Opeyemi and Akala Oluwatosin Sakirah.

Receiving the young doctors at the Government House, Osogbo on Sunday, Aregbesola explained that sending the students to Ukraine was not about nationalism, but about justice and fairness, stating that the students were admitted for medicine and it behooves the university and government to fulfill their obligations. He said, “It was not easy to take this decision no matter what anyone says. It was a difficult task. It was even hectic getting visas  for 85 medical students to leave Nigeria for Ukraine.

“Though, the state’s decision was ignorantly criticised, blackmailed and scandalously portrayed by the opposition and mischief-makers, but our government remained undaunted, resilient, dogged and unshakable to make this feat a success. This commitment has today helped us to defeat the propagandists, mischief-makers and rancorous sponsors by all ramifications. I did all in the interest of fairness and justice to ensure that the state fulfills her part of agreement made to the medical students while advertising the sale of forms for the course. We did this because we believed that having admitted the students for the course which they applied for, then it is mandatory on us to ensure that they become medical doctors. We had advertised the medical course and admitted the students, it is the obligation of the government to see the students through the programme. Human will only succeed when they uphold justice and fairness. So, what informed our decision on these students is justice and fairness.

Aregbesola who said education is not about one discipline, but about having skills, motivation and knowledge, said he was happy and proud for the success in the academic programme of the young doctors.

He urged the young doctors to be professional, humane and godly in discharging their duties in hospitals and everywhere they find themselves. He implored the newly graduated medical doctors to maintain the virtues which made them excel in Ukraine, encouraging them to always put their patients first in the discharge of their duties.

The Governor said, “We are celebrating with you today, but it will be good of you if you stick to those virtues that had made you successful in Ukraine by being compassionate towards your patients at all times. We are proud of you on your achievements and I believe you have just started. You must strive to reach the peak of your profession as medical doctors. You should be compassionate towards your patients at all times.”

The Deputy Governor of the State, Mrs. Grace Titi-Laoye Tomori said despite the fact that the challenges that faced UNIOSUN and the medical students were inherited by the Aregbesola’s administration, the Governor did not bother to ensure that the students proceed in their academic pursuit, as he weathered storms to take them to the promised land, saying, “We were at a time advised to withdraw this programme but Mr. Governor refused because he wanted to ensure that the dream of the students is realised”.

The Deputy Governor, who described the sponsored doctors as assets to Nigeria and black race, said it is on record that the beneficiaries portrayed Nigeria and Africa in good light while they were undergraduate at the Ukraine University. She said the newly inducted medical doctors demonstrated high sense of moral standards and Omoluabi ethos which according to her has changed positively the impression of those the new doctors met in the course of their studies in Ukraine.

“They have made us proud. They have done well because asides the fact that they consistently became first in their various fields of studies, they equally set a pace on human morality, standard and values”, the deputy governor said, commending the parents of the new medical doctors for their support and cooperation with the government in ensuring the success of the sponsored doctors.

In his remarks at the airport, the Commissioner for Innovation, Science and Technology, Engr. Remi Omowaiye said, “Most of the promises made are now promises kept. Despite the fact that the state sponsored these students through their graduation, the Governor also mandated us to get them registered with Medical and Dental Council Nigeria, MDCN for their professional licensing.We thank God today that a difficult task has become a success story because in spite of the challenges, blackmails and abuses,  we record huge success on this commendable initiative. Governor Aregbesola has done wonderfully well to ensure that these students attain greatness in life; even at a time of economic hardship, we suggested to Mr Governor to at least drop some of the students who are not from the state, but he insisted that in as much as blood runs in his veins, he will ensure the completion of their programmes.”

In his words, the Vice Chancellor, Osun State University, Professor Labo Popoola said no government in the world has done what Aregbesola did in the education sector. He said no government in the history of Nigeria has sponsored and trained 85 medical students at a time, a feat which he said has become a model in Nigeria and Africa. The VC who lamented the decadence in the university education in the country, said it is time for all to rise in finding solution to myriads of challenges bedeviling the university system in the country.

Professor Popoola said, “I am happy today to see these doctors, but the greatest joy remains in the fact that Osun has made the record in history because no government on this planet has trained 85 doctors at a time in Nigeria. So, Aregbesola’s landmark is un-rivalry in all sectors most especially in the area of education as many testimonies had proved the impacts of the state. This is a challenge on everyone of us particularly governments at different levels and states. It is a time to pursue vision that will impact greatly in people’s lives. Our governments need to be more conscious about the welfare of the people and do more by affecting positively on education which is the bedrock of development.”

Speaking on behalf of the parents, Reverend Reuben Fakolade commended Aregbesola for seeing through the academic success of the sponsored doctors, saying the decision to take 85 medical students to overseas in furtherance of their studies depicts high sense of compassion and determination that Aregbesola has for education and people’s welfare.

Describing Aregbesola as a detribalised leader and non-religious bigot, Fakolade noted that the Governor has proven to be a leader with no measure, saying, “As much as I am happy today for being one of the parents of the medical doctors who benefited from the state education scholarship, I am also enthused that Aregbesola has proven his traducers wrong. The number of Christians among the then medical students now medical doctors sponsored to Ukraine by Aregbesola’s government shows that Mr Governor is not anti-Christian. It also shows that Aregbesola is not a religious bigot as being painted by his critics as facts show that Christians made more list than muslims among the UNIOSUN medical doctors. With this development, Aregbesola has shown to the world that he is not what some alleged him of. He doesn’t discriminate and he is not a religious fanatic. He is a man, unique governor of all and worthy leader par excellence.

In their remarks, the students attributed their academic success to Aregbesola’s commitment to promoting functional education and concern on their plights when they were stranded in UNIOSUN. They promised to embark on service to humanity and give back to the community, particular Osun state in appreciation of their free medical studies.

Oyeleye, the overall best student who studied Cardiology said, “I am one of the beneficiaries of Aregbesola’s gesture, I am one of the 85 medical students sponsored by his administration to one of the best universities in the world. We have studied and graduated. We thank God that today, we have been made medical doctors through the support of Osun Government. It is a dream come true for me and my family. Osun Government has made history through this, Governor Aregbesola has done excellently well in our lives to attain this giant feat in academic because if not for him, we might not be celebrated like this today. I wonder what would become of our dream if Governor Aregbesola had not shown concern.

Another beneficiary, Dr. Oluwasayo Motunrayo said, “I will forever be grateful to Aregbesola for making our dreams come to pass. He has done well to ensure that we did not fail in meeting up with our medical carreer in life.”

Ezekoye Maria, an indigene of Anambra state, who is part of the medical students, said, “We had lost hope when there was no teaching hospital to proceed to for our medical studies at UNIOSUN, we were all stranded. But Governor Aregbesola restored our hope, he made us realise our dreams by sending us to one of the best universities in the world for completion of our medical studies free of charge. Today, we are certified medical doctors. We are all proud of Osun government.”

The medical students have been enrolled for the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria’s License Examination at the University of Ilorin. Some people have again been criticising the enrolment of the students, questioning the essence of sending them to Ukraine.

But Dr Afolayan explained that “as for further training and exams, all foreign medical graduates, irrespective of countries of training, must undergo compulsory pre-registration qualifying examination organised by MDCN.”

The success story of the UNIOSUN medical students has added a fresh feather to the landmark achievement of Aregbesola in the education sector.

 

PARTICIPANTS FROM UBEC

S/ N        Name                                                     Designation                                                          Gender

  1. Senator Rose Okoh Deputy Chairman Senate                                  F                                                                                                                              Committee on Education
  2. Dr. Hamid Bobboyi Executive Secretary UBEc                                                M
  3. Mahmud Mohammed Sani                 Special   Assistant to Hon.

Minister of Education on ICT                           M

  1. Personal Assistant                 PA Deputy Chairman Senate                            M

Committee on Basic Education

  1. Oluremi Adeola Onabanjo Asst. Dir. Int’l Economic Relation

Dept. (IRED) Federal Min. of Finance            M

  1. Prince Awofisayo Felix Executive Chairman SUBEB (Sub-Deen        M

South-West) Director, Social Mobilization UBEC

  1. Bello Husaini Project Cordinator UBEC                                  M
  2. Iro Umar                 Senior Project officer (Comm.)                         M

– SEPIP UBEC

  1. Moses Oyishe EMIS Officer SEPIP/UBEC                                              M
  2. Akila Dabara A.D. Teacher Prof. Dev. UBEC                         M
  3. Mayowa Aleshin Prin. Prog. ICT SEPIP/UBEC                            M
  4. Ibrahim Bala Bakari Zonal director UBEC N.W                                 M
  5. Mansir Idris Deputy Director Q.A. UBEC N.E Zone            M
  6. Hassan D. Umar Deputy Director Audit UBEC                            M
  7. Badamasi Musa Pers. Asst. (Legal)                                                                M
  8. Barr. Suleiman Modibbo UBEC                                                                    M

LETTER TO THE EDITOR: Still On UNIOSUN Medical Students Return

The accolades that have been showered on the government of the State of Osun, over the sponsorship of stranded Medical Students of UNIOSUN to Ukraine to complete their medical training are not in anyway out of place. This is because the government came to their rescue at the time all hope was lost.

I am not a fan of Governor Rauf Aregbesola or his government, but truth must be told he has done what could not have been ordinarily expected from any government in Nigeria.

While I have reservation for the inability of the government to upgrade the General Hospital in Asubiaro to a teaching hospital, I will not want to join those who are criticizing the government for not doing so after explanations have been made that at the time the students were to go for their clinical training, the government could not afford the amount required for the upgrade. For any right-thinking person, this is understandable.

One significant thing that should be appreciated is that the administration has saved the lives of the affected student from collapse, because the help came at the time they needed it.

The return of the 50 out of 85 students who have graduated and became medical doctors after their trainings, while 35 others stayed back for further pursuit of their lives’ endeavour has clearly shown that the government is committed to the development of its citizens, particularly our future leaders who would have had their dreams of becoming medical doctors aborted.

Though, some critics have also faulted the rationale behind the sponsorship of the students to Ukraine, but I am sure that such individuals would not have wished their children what could have become the fate of the beneficiaries if the government did not rise to the situation.

Aregbesola and his government have however made history and done excellently in promoting functional education. This is a legacy that would remain forever.

EDITORIAL: Back From Ukraine

Out of the State of Osun, there is often a lot of positive new development with due acknowledgement to the Roman Emperor Pleiny. A good instance here is the enthrallment with which the news of the return of 35 out of the 85 medical students who were sponsored to Ukraine University for the completion of their studies by Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration has been received from within and outside of the state.

Expectedly, kudos has been given by the beneficiaries, their parents and sincere well-wishers.

They returned home after graduating from the V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Kharkiv, Ukraine as certified medical doctors.

About 15 of the medical students stayed back in Ukraine for further pursuit.

It would be recalled that 50 of the 85 UNIOSUN students recently graduated and were inducted as qualified medical doctors after passing the 2017 KROK 2 Ukraine National Medical Exams, in June this year.

The UNIOSUN students were sent to Ukraine by the Aregbesola administration to complete their medical studies in Ukraine in 2013 as a result of non-availability of teaching hospital for their clinical studies, as it is one of the required facilities for training as a qualified medical practitioner.

We have to put this tremendous advance into context. This commendable exercise took place during a time of excruciatingly difficult fiscal conditions. Ogbeni Aregbesola and his administration frankly had every sensible reason not to have initiated it in the first place, but owing to his rational thought as a Governor and a father, he deem it fit as the best thing to do which he did. And now for this reason, this initiative has left an indelible imprint not only in his history but that of the state and the students.

Producing more doctors will help to improve the health sector. For these reasons this newspaper cannot but commend the administration of Ogbeni Aregbesola for its vigour in implementing a vital element of the social contract.

EDITORIAL: Back From Ukraine

Out of the State of Osun, there is often a lot of positive new development with due acknowledgement to the Roman Emperor Pleiny. A good instance here is the enthrallment with which the news of the return of 35 out of the 85 medical students who were sponsored to Ukraine University for the completion of their studies by Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration has been received from within and outside of the state.

Governor Rauf Aregbesola of Osun with returned UNIOSUN

medical students from Ukraine

Expectedly, kudos has been given by the beneficiaries, their parents and sincere well-wishers.

They returned home after graduating from the V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Kharkiv, Ukraine as certified medical doctors.

About 15 of the medical students stayed back in Ukraine for further pursuit.

It would be recalled that 50 of the 85 UNIOSUN students recently graduated and were inducted as qualified medical doctors after passing the 2017 KROK 2 Ukraine National Medical Exams, in June this year.

The UNIOSUN students were sent to Ukraine by the Aregbesola administration to complete their medical studies in Ukraine in 2013 as a result of non-availability of teaching hospital for their clinical studies, as it is one of the required facilities for training as a qualified medical practitioner.

Cross Section of UNIOSUN medical students hosted

at Government House, Osogbo

We have to put this tremendous advance into context. This commendable exercise took place during a time of excruciatingly difficult fiscal conditions. Ogbeni Aregbesola and his administration frankly had every sensible reason not to have initiated it in the first place, but owing to his rational thought as a Governor and a father, he deem it fit as the best thing to do which he did. And now for this reason, this initiative has left an indelible imprint not only in his history but that of the state and the students.

Producing more doctors will help to improve the health sector. For these reasons this newspaper cannot but commend the administration of Ogbeni Aregbesola for its vigour in implementing a vital element of the social contract.

Aregbesola Urges LAUTECH Lecturers To Resume Work

Osun State Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has urged striking lecturers of the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH) to suspend their strike and return to work in the interest of the students of the institution.

According to Aregbesola, the plight of the students whose precious time is being wasted as a result of the protracted strike of the lecturers should be considered, lamenting that the industrial action is jeopardizing their future.

Aregbesola stated this at a reception held in honour of the Medical Students of Osun state University who returned from Ukraine where they were sent by the state government to further their studies in medicine.

The Governor maintained that it was not for anybody to have the notion that the two owner state governors, Aregbesola and Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State were insensitive towards the situation of LAUTECH, stressing that the reality is that the two states was incapacitated financially meeting the demands of the lecturers as there is no way can give what you don’t have.

He added that it is unfortunate that while civil servants in the upper cadre of the civil service have agreed to be collecting a fraction of their salaries, the lecturers of LAUTECH have refused to make sacrifice and pretending not to understand the financial situation of the two states.

Aregbesola said, “I am using this medium to appeal to the striking lecturers of LAUTECH to please return to work in the interest of the students whose future are being jeopardized.

“I urge them to reason along the same line of thought of the two owner states for a solution to be quickly found in solving the problem.

“If the higher cadre of the civil service in Osun can agree to be collecting a fraction of their salaries because of the harsh economic condition government has found itself, I see no reason why the LAUTECH lecturers can’t reason with government”.

Aregbesola wondered why the Osun state University with fewer numbers of students could manage itself within its Internally Generated Revenue and LAUTECH with more students population could not.

He noted that a proper audit of the LAUTECH accounts is sacrosanct as part of the solution to the crisis rocking the school.

“If UNIOSUN with fewer numbers of students than LAUTECH could run successfully within its internally generated revenue, I see no reason why LAUTECH with more students population can not run itself.

“We want this problem to be over so that our children can return to school and pursue their academic carrier.

“I appeal to the lecturers to return to class while a proper audit of the school will be done so as to unravel the real problem of the school and then, we can correct it”, Aregbesola stressed.

In his remarks, Rev. Victor Fakolade who spoke on behalf of the parents of the medical doctors appreciated Aregbesola for the sponsorship of their children, describing it as an indelible project in their lives and families.

Fakolade described Aregbesola as a detribalized Governor and not a religious bigot, maintaining that the Governor is fair to all religions in the state.

Commendations Trail UNIOSUN Medical Students’ Return From Ukraine

By Ismaeel Uthman

The return of 35 of the 85 medical students of the Osun State University who were sent to Ukraine University for medical studies by Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration has continued to attract commendations from the beneficiaries, their parents and unbiased well-wishers.

They returned home after graduating from the V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, Kharkov, Ukraine and certified as medical doctors.

About 15 of the medical students stayed back in Ukraine for future pursuit.

It would be recalled that 50 of the 85 UNIOSUN students recently graduated and were inducted as qualified medical doctors after passing the 2017 KROK 2 Ukraine National Medical Exams June this year.

The UNIOSUN students were sent to Ukraine by the Aregbesola’s administration to complete their medical studies in Ukraine in 2013 as a result of non-availability of teaching hospital for their clinical studies in furtherance of their studies here.

One of the medical students, Miss Latifat Abiola Oyeleye was declared the overall best medical student of the Karazin Kharkiv National University as well as the 2017 overall best students in the university with an outstanding score of 95.6% in KROK 2 Exams.

Receiving the young doctors at the Government House, Osogbo on Sunday, Aregbesola welcomed them and urged them to let their skills, knowledge and education speak for them.

Aregbesola explained that sending the students to Ukraine was not about nationalism but about justice and fairness, stating that the students were admitted for medicine and it behoved the university and government to fulfill their obligations.

He said: “We had advertised the medical course and admitted the students, it is the obligation of the government to see the students through the program. Human being will only succeed when he upholds justice and fairness. So, what informed our decision on these students is justice and fairness.

The Governor urged the young doctors to be professional, humane and godly in discharging their duties in hospitals and everywhere they find themselves.

He implored the newly graduated medical doctors to maintain the virtues which made them excel in Ukraine, encouraging them to always put their patients first in discharging of their duties.

The governor said, “We are celebrating with you today, but it will be good of you if you stick to those virtues that made you successful in Ukraine by being compassionate towards your patients at all times.

“We are proud of you on your achievements and I believe you have just started, you must strive to reach the peak of profession as medical doctors. You should be compassionate towards your patients at all times.”

The Deputy Governor of the State, Mrs Grace Titi-Laoye Tomori and the Commissioner for Innovation, Science and Technology, Engr. Remi Omowaiye who were involved in the process of getting the students complete their clinical training, said the students were stranded as a resort of non-availability of the teaching hospital.

They explained that no university in Nigeria was ready to accept the students for clinical training because they could not go out of the stipulated number of medical students.

V.N. Karazin Kharkiv National University, according to the Deputy Governor and Omowaiye, was the best university for the state government to send the UNIOSUN students to, as it was the only university that was ready to take the students with reasonable, affordable financial and logistics demands.

In their remarks, the students attributed their academic success to Aregbesola’s commitment to promoting functional education and concern on their plights when they were stranded in UNIOSUN.

They promised to embark on service to humanity and give back to the community, particularly Osun state in appreciation of their free medical studies.

Oyeleye, the overall best students said: “I am one of the beneficiaries of Aregbesola’s gesture, I am one of the 85 medical students sponsored by his administration to one of the best universities in the world.

“We have studied and graduated. We thank God that today, we have been made medical doctors through the support of Osun Government. It is a dream come true for me and my family.

“Osun Government has made history through this, Governor Aregbesola has done excellently well in our lives to attain this giant feat in academic because if not for him, we might not be celebrated like this today.”

Another beneficiary, Dr. Oluwasayo Motunrayo said, “I will forever be grateful to Aregbesola for making our dreams come to pass. He has done well to ensure that we did not fail in meeting up with our medical career in life.”

Ezekoye Maria, an indigene of Anambra state, who is part of the medical students, said: “We had lost hope when there was no teaching hospital to proceed to for our medical studies at UNIOSUN, we were all stranded.

“But Governor Aregbesola restored our hope, he made us realise our dreams by sending us to one of the best universities in Ukraine for medical studies free of charge. Today, we are certified medical doctors. We are all proud of Osun government.