The leadership of the National Association of Osun State Students (NAOSS), on Friday, warned the Oyo State government to shelve what it called the “fraudulent move” to acquire the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology (LAUTECH), Ogbomoso.
The institution is jointly owned by the Oyo and Osun states.
The association also urged the Oyo State government to stop politicising issues and present facts to controvert the claims of its Osun State counterpart on the funding of the institution.
Addressing a joint press conference in Osogbo after a peaceful protest by NAOSS members in Osogbo to register their displeasure with alleged attempt to malign Osun State concerning LAUTECH funding, the chairman of the National Association of Nigerian Students/Joint Campus Committee (NANS/JCC), Abidoye Omololu and the president of NAOSS, Oderinwale Elisha, advised the Oyo State government to study all agreements pertaining to the LAUTECH issue.
According to them, those agreements will help the state to see the LAUTECH case “more honestly and clearly,” adding that “the Supreme Court had laid to rest, how LAUTECH’s divorce can be effected. Should that be Oyo’s wish, it should simply follow the protocol and stop blackmailing Osun.”
The student leaders said: “From 2013 to date, Osun alone has been paying the salaries of the workers of specifically LAUTECH Teaching Hospital, Osogbo, and as we speak, it has expended over N16 billion. Ironically, within the same period, Osun has also committed over N9 billion to the funding of LAUTECH, Ogbomoso. So, cumulatively, from 2013 to now, Osun has expended over N25 billion on LAUTECH. Oyo State should tell the world its own level of commitment?
“Again, what has been Oyo’s contribution to LAUTECH in the last three years? In 2017, when, after the visitation panel’s intervention, it was agreed that the two states should contribute N1 billion each as stabilisation fund, to enable the institution take off from there in preparation to be self-funding, Osun paid its N1billion promptly. But Oyo paid only N717 million in 10 long installments, whereas Osun made a total contribution of N1.2 billion to the university alone. If you add the salaries of workers at LAUTECH Teaching Hospital, Osogbo, to it, that year alone Osun spent N3 billion.
“In 2018, again, our dear state contributed N2.3 billion to the Teaching Hospital in Osogbo and another N500 million to the university released in just one tranche, bringing its total contribution for that year to N2.8 billion. What did we get from Oyo? A paltry N443.8 million which it paid in six installments. Again, like it did in 2017, it did not make any contribution to the teaching hospital in Osogbo. So, who is irresponsible here?”
Credit: Nigerian Tribune