Ogun State Governor, Mr. Dapo Abiodun Saturday reinstated a Deputy Director in the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Mr. Olusoji Majekodunmi, who was sacked by the immediate past administration of governor Ibikunle Amosun under questionable circumstances.
The governor also reinstated a former Chairman, Nigerian Union of Teachers (NUT), Ogun State Chapter, Mr. Dare Ilekoya, who was retired compulsory for alleged infractions during the 2017 World Teachers’ Day celebration.
Abiodun announced their reinstatement at the 2019 World Teachers’ Day celebration held at the MKO Abiola Stadium, Kuto in Abeokuta, saying the decision was “to encourage teachers and also a right thing to do.”
Majekodunmi was the deputy director in charge of setting disputed English Language questions for the states unified examination in 2015, while Ilekoya was compulsorily retired for his open support for opposition politicians during the 2017 World Teachers’ Day.
The governor said his administration would continue to ensure that the rights of teachers were protected and called on teachers to be guided by the laws of the civil service.
Abiodun noted that the celebration of the World Teachers’ Day was a key element of nation building and a catalyst for the mental, physical, social and spiritual development of humanity, adding that the celebration was a great day of joy for teachers and those trained or brought up by teachers.
“I know very much the sacrifices that teachers make on a daily basis to impart knowledge, considering the prevailing socio-economic situation where we have continued to see that students spend a longer part of their days with their teachers.
“The teachers are fast becoming foster parents as well, as such, a good student is not just a reflection of the home, but also the teacher. Celebrating our teachers is, therefore, not a thing of one, but of all days,” he said.
Abiodun enjoined the teachers to double their efforts so as to achieve a better performance from students in the Senior School Certificate Examinations (SSCE) and other examinations.
He commended the academic excellence and the sagacity of professional tutors and teachers at the national level through the exploits of Yewa College in Ilaro; Comprehensive High School in Ayetoro; Ijebu-Ode Grammar School in Ijebu-Ode; Adeola Odutola College in Ijebu-Ode; Mayflower School in Ikenne; and Abeokuta Grammar School in Abeokuta.
The governor also charged labour leaders to be cautious and moderate in pushing forward their requests to government, saying unionism is a part of the fundamental rights of workers.
He urged the labour unions and associations to always show understanding in their agitations.
The governor described education as a key element of nation building and a catalyst for mental, physical, social and spiritual development of humanity while acknowledging teachers for their contributions to the socio-economic life of the nation.
He said the celebration was to take stock of where the education sector was and where it ought to be by focusing, accessing and improving education that would provide opportunity to consider issues relating to teachers and the teaching profession.
“It is in emphasising the importance of the teaching and learning process and to raise the profile and increase the awareness of the profession. The rising importance of education does not only reflect the reality of our society.
“It also resonate in the new demands of the contemporary world. Technology is fast changing the mood of operation in every facet of life and this has reflected in service delivery of the teaching profession and the development of any nation,” he said.
Abiodun said the declaration of a state of emergency in the education sector was to take a holistic approach in meeting the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), adding that the welfare of teachers would continue to receive the needed attention as his administration was poised at repositioning the sector.
Speaking earlier, the State Chairman, Nigeria Union of Teachers, Comrade Titilope Adebanjo, said teachers occupied important position not only in the business of teaching and learning but also in the development of the society as a whole.
He called for the improvement in teachers’ condition of service to attain the desired standards, adding that they were ready to contribute their quota to reposition the sector.
Also speaking, the state Chairman of Academic Staff Union of Secondary Schools, Mr. Akeem Lasisi, said a clinical analysis of this year’ s theme showed that all was not well with the teaching profession, especially in Nigeria, calling on government at all levels to work towards revamping the sector.