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Edo State Colleges Of Education Closure: The Flip Side Of The Pictures

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The billowy of perceived sudden emotionally tensed up questions raised by some stakeholders, over the temporary closure of Edo State college of Education, Ekiadolor and others by the state government has culminated treads of opinion.

With many demanding a clear direction of the policies implored by Governor Godwin Obaseki in the face of it, he has continued to display resilience in his ideologies to change the Educational framework to ensure the International best practices.

College of Education, Ekiadolor
College of Education, Ekiadolor

Other fews are so much in apprehension, over the plight of the inhabitants whose economic values they claim has dehydrated and hit a snag by the reason of the temporary closure of the institutions.

However, Some Civil Society collaborators have leveraged on the gaps created by the assumed closure, to pile sequences of pressure on government to reopen the schools for Academic operations.

Although, there may have been some levels of awareness created by the government to sensitize the people over its plans to decentralize the institutions for a Perceived future benefits

But for the Agitators, they are resolute and believed that, the long term plans to revive, reposition and restructure the acclaimed decaying infrastructure of the institutions, may have negated and affected the economic chains across host communities, placing them in abject squalour, thereby, creating unemployment and rendering social life of the people and engagement useless.

Unarguably, the tensions mounted on incumbent administration to either revert to the old system and reopen it for academic operations have continued to escalate opinions.

Recently, a group under the Talakawas Parliament auspices, Led by Comrade Kola Edokpayi, championed a protest course to demand reopening of the institutions.

They Evaporated and condensed at the College of Education Ekiadolor to register their displeasure.

Speaking to newsmen, the leader and convener of the protest, Comrade Kola Edokpayi described the situation as very worrisome.

Comrade Kola ascribed that, Education is a veritable weapon for the emaciipation of man from mental and physical slavery and responsive government invest in quality Education.

He called on the authority to act fast and reopen the school for academic session to ameliorate the suffering of the inhabitants who he claimed have been plugged into Economic dehydration.

“We woke up one morning and found that, Education have been orchestrized Educationally.

“Having consulted with the E’s and K’s, God Almighty, we decided to register our spleens to call on Governor Godwin Obaseki with immidiate effect to order the reopening of the institutions (COLBEN).

“We can’t continue to remain silent when things are deteriorating.

“We are confused by the numeclature of the school. Wether it’s called college of Education or Tayo Akpata University Ekiadolor. Since the closure of the institutions, Economic life activity has hit all-time low and that is the possible means of survival of the community.

He urged government to craete considerable consciousness in applying its policies in value chain link fences that will provide quality Education for the masses.

However, in a quick altercation to the lamentations and demands of the Talakawas, Edo state Governor, Godwin Obaseki, reiterated his administration’s plans to operate the Tayo Akpata University of Education,
Ekiadolor, as well as multicampus College of Education with sites in Igueben, Abudu and Auchi.

He said, the Abudu campus is to serve as Special Training Centre for teachers at the Basic Education level, the campus at Igueben will focus on training teachers for technical and secondary education.

He revealed that, the state government has concluded arrangement to remodel the college in Abudu. Noting; “After revamping this institution, it will serve as a centre for training and certification of new sets of teachers for the basic level of education. This will prepare the teachers to adopt modern teaching methods at that level of education.”

Besides, Governor, Godwin Obaseki, also disclosed plans to restructure the state’s tertiary education scene for the training of teachers with competencies in different knowledge and skill areas, especially basic and technical education.

Obaseki disclosed this when he visited the campus for an on-the-spot inspection of infrastructure at the institution.

He added, “We are here to review the plans and designs, which will give way for the remodelling of the campus. This visit will prepare way for the contractors to be mobilised to site immediately. The rehabilitation work at the college will not affect academic work as the campus is currently not in session.”

He noted that government has a funding plan for the college, which will serve as training centre for basic school teachers, who are instrumental in the state’s government drive to revive public primary education.

Noting explained that, training has already commenced for some teachers in pilot schools at Benin, the state capital, Obaseki said, “The training will prepare teachers to apply new methods of teaching, which the state government has introduced at the basic level of education. About 2000 teachers from 300 schools are participating in the pilot phase of this training programme.”

The governor maintained that, in the long-term plan, the state plans to continue with the training of teachers. Stressing; “The training of teachers will be on a permanent basis as we intend to have a system that focuses on special training for teachers at the basic education level.”

Meanwhile also reaffirming the commitment of the Edo State Government, Special Adviser on Media and Communication Strategy, Crusoe Osagie, said, the state government is dedicated to the overhaul of the institutions so they can compete favourably with their peers around the world when they reopen.

He reiterated the commitment of the Governor to systematically overhaul some state-run tertiary institutions for optimal performance, noting that, the revamp was methodical and dependent on the peculiarities associated with the state of the schools at the start of the revamp exercise.

According to him, “Tertiary institutions in Edo State are undergoing an overhaul. The approach for the revamp of the institutions is dependent on the state of the different schools. After a careful review of the institutions, the level of dilapidation informed decisions on whether they would be shut for the revamping or if students can remain on campus while the overhaul is implemented.”

Crusoe said, the state government made room for the last batch of students on admission at the College of Education, Ekiadolor, to complete their studies before it commenced the revamp exercise.

He continued, “With that done, plans have been completed to reopen the school to run a tri-campus system. The campuses will be located in the three senatorial districts of the state, with specialisations in different aspects of teacher education. The campus in Abudu is dedicated to training teachers in the Basic Education; in Afuze, the training will focus on Physical and Special Needs Education, while the campus in Igueben will focus on training Secondary School teachers.”

On the College of Agriculture, Iguoriakhi, the governor’s aide said the institution was in a state of disrepair with potential danger posed to the lives of the students as a result of failing infrastructure and had to be shutdown to make room for a holistic overhaul.

He said the government regrets that the students had to make some sacrifice in the course of the overhaul of the school, noting that the paperwork for the redesign of the college has been completed and work on the buildings and other physical infrastructure would soon commence.

According to him, “The methodological approach is also applied to the College of Agriculture, Iguoriakhi. However, the school had to be shut down because the buildings were falling apart. The students were endangered and left to the elements. Hut-like buildings were tucked close to thick bushes, and the students were exposed to possible attacks by animals in the surrounding forests. There were no standard medical centres and other trappings of a standard tertiary institution. To avoid crisis, the school had to be shutdown.

“The state government has completed the paperwork and design for a tri-campus college system for the college of agriculture, which will now be renamed as College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, with campuses in the state’s three senatorial districts. While Iguoriakhi will host the School of Agricultural Technology and Engineering; the School of Aquaculture and Marine Technology will replace the former College of Agriculture Technology in Agenebode and a new School of Forestry and Environmental Technology, will be at Uromi.”

He noted that the state government’s plan was to ensure that the institutions are at par with their peers across the world, even as students in the state will be assured of a world-class education at the institutions when they fully reopen for academic work.

Recall that, Governor Obaseki sometime ago, announced the Temporary closure of the institutions to enable his government draw out modalities to accommodate and upgrade all segments of the state-owned colleges.

Since then,his decisions have generated hightened arguments and counter arguments across members of the society.

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