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Akeredolu Bags Honorary Doctor of Laws, Urges "Gown-Town" collaboration

The Ondo State Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, SAN,  has urged institutions of higher learning to brace up to the challenges of real development.

The  governor made this known at the 15th Convocation ceremony of Igbinedion University, Okada, Edo State, where he was conferred with the Honorary Doctor of Laws  by the institution. 

Governor Akeredolu said there appeared to be an increasing disconnect between the curricula adopted for the training of ‎citizens and the current realities. 
 "Were it not so, we would not be confronted with the inexplicable situation which ensures that millions of our young men and women remain unemployed in a developing economy which should, ordinarily, absorb all  available trained hands. 

 "The tragic reality borders on the level and quality of training received by these wonderful creatures who excel so easily whenever they find themselves in an environment which encourages intellection.

 "While it is important for government, at all levels, to concentrate on the education of citizens, our academics must descend from the Ivory Tower to interact with the society with a view to coming to terms with reality," he said.

‎ ‎Arakunrin Akeredolu categorically stated that unless the issue of education was taken seriously, the quest for development would not only be unrealizable but, regrettably  laughable.‎ ‎ 
"The character of the curricula of education must be such that address basic challenges of existence in any given environment. 

"Acquisition of knowledge must be seen as integral to the quest for the development of a society. 

 "The process is too important to be reduced to a carnival-like fiesta, which is mere evidence of participation in the certification rites, culminating in the award of degrees and diplomas of varying qualities. ‎An educated person should be able to solve specific problems," he said.

As a way out of this conundrum, the Ondo State Governor avered that any society owes its citizens a bounding duty in ensuring that their welfare shall be the sole reason for governance. 

 "It is, however, delusional to suspend the  government in the sky like an abstraction, withdrawn from the environment. The purpose of having a government and the type of government must be clearly defined by the people themselves," he said.

He further urged the people to realize that they had roles to play in ensuring good education for all.‎

 "There can be no substitute for good education if a society is truly desirous of joining the rest of the civilized world, then it is patently unrealistic to expect a benevolent phantom called government to provide everything. 

"No society can rise above the level of its idea concerning consistent intellectual nurturing of its citizens, which is the true meaning of education.

 "Our country should be able to depend, mainly, on the expertise of those whose trainings have gobbled huge investments from the commonwealth, to abridge the wide gap in infrastructural deficit. 

 "At this stage, considering where we were, especially in this part of the country during the First Republic, we should be far less dependent on other nations of the world for basic means of sustenance", he submitted.

The governor, who was elated at the turnout of well-wishers from within and  outside Ondo State to the ceremony, could not  hold back acknowledging cheers from them.

 His Deputy, Hon. Agboola Ajayi; Lawmakers representing Ondo State in the National Assembly;  Secretary to the State Government Hon. Ifedayo Abegunde; Chief of Staff to the Governor Chief Olugbenga Ale;  State Chairman of APC, Engineer Ade Adetimehin;  State Commissioners;  Special Advisers to the Governor; Human Rights Activist, Dr Tunji Abayomi;  Permanent Secretaries, Trade Unionists; Students of the State Polytechnic Owo led by the executives of the Student Union Government, SUG and the State Cultural Troupe and several others made the day delightful for the governor.

 Speaking on the award conferred on the governor, the Senator representing the Central Senatorial District of Ondo State, Senator Tayo Alasoadura said the contributions of the governor as a one time Attorney General of the state, former President of the Nigerian Bar Association and a holder of the prestigious legal title of  Senior Advocate of Nigeria, SAN, were enough outstanding accomplishments for the University to honour him.

 Also, a Human Rights Activist and an APC stalwart, Dr Tunji Abayomi, said  that Arakunrin Akeredolu had contributed greatly to the legal profession for him to be conferred with a honorary Doctor of Laws.

He described the governor as a man of courage, and promoter of human dignity.

Other award recipients include 31 year-old Umar Ibrahim Mantu who was conferred with an Honorary Doctor of Humanities, and Olorogun Oscar James Ibru was also conferred with Honorary Doctor of Business Administration.

 Meanwhile, President Muhammadu Buhari has reiterated his administration's commitment to ensuring security of lives of Nigerians.

He said maintaining peace was a duty which must be embraced by all. The President who spoke at the 15th Convocation Ceremony of Igbinedion University Okada, in Edo State,acknowledged the contribution of private Universities to the tertiary education in Nigeria. 

Represented by a Director in the Federal Ministry of Education Joel Ojo, President Buhari  assured that his administration would continue to prioritize education of its citizens. 

 Also, speaking a former Head of State General Abdulsalami Abubakar urged Nigerians to do their bits at ensuring peaceful coexistence and stability of the nation. 

 He said no country would thrive in an atmosphere of chaos and violence.

Igbinedion University, Okada, the first private University in Nigeria was  established in 1999 and has produced over 100 PhD holders. 
 Its student population has grown from 111 in the 1999/2000 session to over 4000 in 2016/17.

And out of the 634 students who graduated, during the 15th Convocation,  36 made First Class honours. ‎

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