The Osun Governor, Ademola Adeleke, has sought the support of the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund) in strengthening the infrastructural development of tertiary institutions in the state.
Mr Adeleke was speaking during a courtesy visit to the Executive Secretary of TETFund, Sonny Echono in Abuja on Friday.
The governor, who noted the educational decline of the state, said that the visit was necessary to ensure education takes its place.
While commending the fund on its role in giving tertiary education a face, Mr Adeleke said that hardly would there be any development in tertiary institutions that would not be traceable to TETFund.
“Let me first commend TETFund for the great job it is doing cut across Nigeria. There is no institution that you will not see TETFund’s presence, so any right-thinking governor must commend their work so they can do more.
“In Osun, we are enjoying Tetfund in the areas of infrastructure.
“I am here for the support from TETFund for Osun state and to come and ask for more because we still need a lot of support because our education has really dropped.
“And maybe it is because I have not come to see you that is why we have not paid attention to Osun state and that is why I am here. You are doing a great job and you must continue,” he said.
Responding, the executive secretary of TETFund, Sonny Echono, said that tertiary education plays a special role in the affairs and even the destiny of any country.
Mr Echono said this is because tertiary education is where the greatest level of production, creativity and greatest impact happens, especially in terms of new ideas, new products and services, and also better ways of doing things.
He said that adequate attention must be placed on tertiary education because innovations, creativity and enterprises are usually at its highest level.
“We believe strongly that tertiary education plays a special role in the affairs and even the destiny of any country because that is the level where greatest level of production, creativity and the greatest impact happens.
“Whether it is in terms of new ideas, in terms of new products and services, in terms of better ways of doing things, it is at that level that innovation is at its highest, that creativity and enterprises are at its highest.
“And it is that body of knowledge of expertise that services the various sectors of every economy whether it’s health, media in any field.
“So if we get our tertiary education right, we can even export that to other African countries and indeed other parts of the world because Nigerians are known and we are endowed by God-very intelligent and hardworking people,” he said.
Mr Echono explained that when Nigerians are equipped with the best facilities and the enabling environment to excel, they do better in every field.
“The task before every one of us is how do we prepare our people, how do we improve on their living standards, how do we give them the necessary tools to transform to the end of other places in the world.
“And as a state, we see you as one who can give this.
“On the specific of the request as it is usual, we discussed specific issues in terms of infrastructure in our schools, we have to deal with some specific projects that we want completed.
“We have to deal with issues and challenges that arise from security, climate change and flooding and other issues and we could work together in promoting arts and culture – our own indigenous technology, how collectively we can translate some of those in terms of areas of research and innovation.
“Osun has taken a lot of lead even at technical levels called STEM, trying to promote technical education and the governor has been talking to me on how we can work together to take this beyond the basic and secondary education to the tertiary level,” he added.
He commended the state governor for paying attention to education while also underlying how important to lay a solid foundation so that collectively the country could be developed.