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Osun government plays politics with Education:disrupts Omooba Dotun Babayemi free summer

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For the last four years, the people of Osun West Senatorial District have benefited from free health and free qualitative summer coaching across the 110 wards that make up the senatorial district via the ALAAFIA DOTUN foundation. The foundation was set up and is driven by Omooba Dotun Babayemi.
The Gbongan prince started as a member of the All Progressives Congress and contributed all he has to ensure that students in Osun West Senatorial District do not lack behind educationally, among other philanthropic steps. The foundation organises annual free summer classes for students of both public and private schools in the ten local governments that make up the Senatorial District after seeking and obtaining approval from the Ministry of education for the last four years. In July and August 2018, Omooba Babayemi again organised the free coaching classes where thousands of students benefitted.
The story changed when Omooba Dotun Babayemi refused to go with political ideologies of the All Progressives Congress. The party refused to heed the call of reasoning and had concluded plans to marginalise Osun West Senatorial District from producing the candidate in the last governorship election. As a result of this, in September 2018, the Gbongan prince left the All Progressives Congress for the Action Democratic Party, ADP . Having moved to the main opposition party, Peoples Democratic Party, P.D.P in the early part of 2019, he sought the approval of the Osun state Ministry of Education to use some public schools for the 2019 edition of the free summer classes and an approval was given via a letter dated 24th July 2019 and signed by one O.O Adeyeye on behalf of the permanent secretary, Festus Olajide. Based on this approval, Babayemi, through his foundation and with the support of the PDP leadership in Osun put together all logistics and had commenced classes in all the 28 centers with an average of 300 students registered in each of the schools obtained permission for, only for another letter dated 6th August 2019 to come from the office of the permanent secretary, Osun State Ministry of Education terminating the prior approval based on what the government called “logistic issues”.
This initiative has been holding annually for the last few years and students across the District have been looking forward to this year’s edition with excitement.The purpose of this initiative is to take these school children off the streets and get them engaged academically during the long holiday which has been done successfully in the last couple of years with quality coaching preparing them ahead of the new school session. However, with this partisan decision from the Osun state Government, these innocent children, mostly from poor family backgrounds across Osun West Senatorial District, will be denied this opportunity of free qualitative education for six weeks. The APC government in Osun has for the last few years to date introduced and implemented a fee for education across board for all children via the backdoor scheme of education tax. Students are not allowed to stay in school irrespective of their family financial status while the government just keeps building and commissioning structures called mega schools worth billions of naira and getting poor families to pay for their ineptitude via a backdoor policy of education tax. The questions that readily come to the mind of any right thinking member of the society are, did the ALAAFIA DOTUN foundation request other resources like teachers, instructional materials and writing materials from the state government? Is the foundation planning to use all schools in Osun West Senatorial District? Again, why is it that all the selected schools for this year’s edition were affected by what the government of the day termed “logistics”? The state government should remember that education is important to the development of any society and as such, stop playing blind politics with the future of innocent children in Osun West Senatorial District. Moreover, any lover of education would wonder why a government which is claiming to raise the standard of education after spending several billions of naira on school structures, is now raising this flimsy excuse and blocking these future leaders from having a taste of free qualitative education brought to their doorstep by someone that has been sympathetic about the state of education of children in his Senatorial District for years and trying to pull these children out of the abyss of examination failure which the APC government in Osun has brought upon them with failed education programmes. Writing the Zonal Inspectors of Education, putting an abrupt end to the summer coaching, actually shows the state government as enemy of progress.
It would be recalled that through the ALAAFIA DOTUN foundation, over four hundred students have enjoyed scholarship throughout their course of study in various universities across the country.



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