Edo State chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) at the weekend called on the state Governor, Godwin Obaseki, to explain the fate of the staff and students of the College of Agriculture, Iguoriaki, which he closed with a promise to revamp it within three months.
Chris Nosa Nehikhare, Edo State Publicity Secretary of PDP in a statement in Benin said Governor Obaseki on assumption of office announced the temporary closure of the College of Agriculture, Iguoriaki, with a promise to restructure and revamp it to a world class institution and set himself a time frame of not more three months.
Nehikhare said nine months later, May 25, 2018 precisely, Governor Obaseki dispatched sack letters to all the staff, academic and non-academic, reason being that their services were no longer required even though the students were just two weeks away from their final examinations.
“He employed the services of security agencies to chase everybody from the vicinity of the school, while their sack was backdated to January 31, 2018.
“In a most brazen, uncreative and in-your-face manner, the governor manufactured alternative facts about paying off the staff and sending students on internship with Presco, Okomu and even Leventis; even Leventis that has been comatose for decades,” he said.
The PDP spokesman also recalled a lecture the governor delivered at the university of Ibadan alumni association, 2018 alumni lecture, entitled,
“Technical & Vocational Education As Imperative For Youth Empowerment” where, he said, Governor Obaseki boasted about “restructuring the curriculum, rebuilding the institution and upgrading the facilities.”
“The Governor talked about recruiting truly qualified faculty for the new three campuses of the College of Agriculture in Iguoriaki (Edo South), Uromi (Edo Central) and Agenebode (Edo North).
“It’s been two years since the “temporary” order of closure of College of Agriculture, Iguoriaki; it’s is worse-off today than it was in 2017 as it is immersed in multiple court cases at the industrial court.
“The school farms and poultry farms have been looted. Heavy machinery like generating sets, vehicles, tractors etc vandalised.
“Laboratories and its equipment, administration buildings and student files, computer rooms with its computer systems, libraries and hostels were vandalized and allowed to rot away.
“The grounds have been overgrown with weed, tall grasses, bats, termites and even herdsmen who now use the offices as kitchens and toilets; in fact the college is in a sorry state.”