Adegboyega University, Ogwa, Edo State, owned by the Apostolic Church, weekend, conferred a Honorary Degree of Public Administration on the Osun State Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola for his efforts in providing qualitative education and lifting his state to an enviable height.
Speaking at a special convocation ceremony, held in his honor at the institution’s John Aluko Babatope Hall, the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Bernard Aigbokan recalled the governor’s achievements in Osun state in the education sector noting that under his watch, the state is ranked one of the five states in the lowest unemployment ladder.
According to him, “Under the governor’s watch, the school feeding programme attracted World Bank commendation. The state is second in human capital development, second in the national assessment on infant and maternal health care delivery and first in Nigeria’s subnational competitiveness index, released by the National Bureau of Statistics and National Competitiveness Council.”
He recalled how the institution was established and granted license by the National Universities Commission (NUC) in March 2011, while highlighting its key challenges which posed constraints to its rapid growth.
The VC assured the management readiness to continue to promote and sustain healthy university tradition.
In his remarks, the Vice President, The Apostolic Church and Visitor to the institution, Pastor Emmanuel Awojide described Aregbesola’s recognition as greatness rooted in taking personal responsibility, focus , doggedness , discipline and determination.
“Greatness is not ascribed but attainable through dint of hard work and time-tested universal principles,” he said, while expressing optimism that the award will spur the governor to greater performance and discovery of uncharted paths.
“The true measure of greatness is in making outstanding contributions to society. We must always find essence in the betterment of our common humanity. As an awardee of the university , you have become its ambassador,” he said
The Chairman, Board of Trustees, Dr. Ebenezer Okebukola said the award on the governor was informed by the vision of its founding fathers to promote intellectual and moral leadership, adding that he has shown great commitment to giving quality Education to the students in a conducive environment and friendly learning atmosphere.
He highlighted some of the achievements the governor has made in his state including establishing Osun Coding academy and training 1000 youths in Information Communication Technology (ICT) , as well as improving the quality of teachers through continuous training and periodic re-evaluation.
The Prof-Chancellor and Chairman of Council, Dr. Bisi Ogunjobi said the choice of the awarded was a well reasoned decision, while describing him as a bridge builder and an ardent Muslim who has no inhibition of working closely with people of different faith, especially The Apostolic Church Nigeria.
“Rauf Aregbesola remains in the vanguard by the silent revolution of providing qualitative education with the introduction of Opon IoM as its flagship and the higher ranking of the state among its peers in the country. I was inspired by the initiative, ”he said.
In his response, the governor commended the leadership of the church and the senate of the university for the honor done on him saying that they stand for the entrenchment of Pentecostalism in Nigeria.
He said he decided to accept the honor from the church despite being a Muslim because he is conscious and sensitive of the fact that God is neutral.
“I don’t know what it takes to bag a honorary degree and most times, I run away from it. I am a Muslim, so if am conscious and sensitive that God is neutral, the best is to receive the award with love and great conviction.”
In his paper entitled, ‘The Cultivated Human Mind’, Aregbesola highlighted some of the achievements of his administration in the last 8 years saying that its greatest impact has been in the area of education in the state.
Aregbesola who disclosed that he had to borrow N11.8 billion from Sukuk bond to turn around the fortunes of education in his state, however stressed the need for the country to pay more attention to education especially at the basic level