Sequel to just the just concluded Education Summit held in Akure where Ondo State Governor Arakunrin Rotimi Akeredolu said He's waiting for some stakeholders decision on his plans to stop free education that has been in existence in Ondo State since the time of independence; we wish to express our dissatisfaction.
On this note, National Congress of Akoko Students (NACAS) National Body say a 'Comprehensive No' to the intending plans of Mr. Governor to further inflict pains and burden on our parents who are still being owed by Ondo State Government.
It is no longer news that Ondo State Government workers now receive salaries like beggars begging for money, this has drawn many families into the well of debt as many are still struggling to pay tuition fees of their children in tertiary institutions. However, the sadonic part of this intending plan that looks like 'already-concluded' is the withdrawal of free education in secondary school that has covered the financial struggle of many civil servants. What a pity that those who benefitted from the Late Obafemi Awolowo free education policy, fought for chicken reducal during their university days have now turned oppressor.
The critical question is where does the Governor and his stakeholders want our parent to get the money they have buried somewhere; have they forgotten that Ondo State is the only South-West state maintaining this free education policy that was brought into existence by Late Pa. Awolowo and maintained by previous Governor of Ondo State? Or is it now a tradition in APC South-West controlled State to rewrite education policy into something unavailable for the middle-class citizens?
It happened in Lagos State during Fashola's administration when Lagos State University (LASU) tuition fee was increased from N25,000.00 to N250,000.00 but was reversed due to political reasons, Olabisi Onabanjo University in Ogun State; N40,000.00 to N140,000.00 and many more in other South-West state which is visible to the blind and audible to the deaf, are we in for such in Ondo State?
We hereby urge Mr. Governor to think twice and reason well with his so called stakeholders; Ondo State is blessed with so many natural endowment that can be turned into Internal Generated Revenue (IGR), yet the stakeholders cannot reason this but all they can reason is to heap more suffering on the masses by proposing plans to stop free education which is the hope of a common man trying to find his own place in the society.
How many of the stakeholders children are schooling in Ondo State, how many of them feel the struggle of a worker owed 7month salary and has to hope that one day he will receive 1month out of the 7month being owed.
Mr. Governor should remember that he was voted in because Ondo citizens were not interested in the former Governor's candidate after they felt a spirit of betrayal by the then Governor, and we strongly believe that the consciousness is still present in us. If Mr. Governor and his stakeholders go ahead to implement this evil plan, we will not hesitate to start "Akeredolu Must Go" slogan when he comes to preach second term ambition when the time comes.
National Congress of Akoko Student (NACAS) National Body once again say a 'Comprehensive No' and we hereby call on all Akoko Elders who are part of this 'Stakeholders' to reason along with us. Remember that what we do today becomes history tomorrow and that if this evil act is enforced, then one day, the poor will have nothing left to eat but the rich.
p.k.a BÀÀLÉ (NACAS NATIONAL PRESIDENT)