Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has inaugurated the Executive Special Physical Development Committee (ESPDC) on the new state College of Agriculture with a charge to ensure that the college gets accreditation and opens for academic activity as soon as possible.
Inaugurating members of the committee at Government House in Benin City, Obaseki said: “We have identified agriculture as the main driver for jobs and wealth creation which is the key priority of our administration.
“We decided that to take agriculture seriously, we must develop the manpower to grow the sector.”
He explained that his administration decided to shut down the existing College of Agriculture in the state and establish a new one with three schools to allow for training of agriculture graduates, equipped with the right skills and knowledge to key into the state’s agricultural reforms.
According to the governor, “We have the Edo State College of Agriculture and three schools in Iguoriakhi, Irrua and Agenebode.”
The governor listed functions of the committee members to include implementation of the report prepared by the consultant on the physical development of the school, emphasising that the physical development is one requirement to get accreditation for the school.
“The committee is to review what has been done so that we can prioritise and appropriate the project for each school of agriculture.
“We will like this done speedily so that the appropriation can be reflected in the 2019 budget,” Obaseki added.
He noted that the committee would submit quarterly report on the progress of work being done in the schools.
The governor listed members of the committee to include the Special Adviser to the Governor on Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security Programme, Joe Okojie (Committee Chairman); Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Monday Osaigbovo, and the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Agriculture, as secretary of the committee.
Others are Special Adviser to the governor on Economic and Development Planning, Joseph Eboigbe; three representatives from Okomu, Leventis and Presco; the Commissioner for Physical Planning;
and Urban Development, and Director Agriculture and Extension Services as well as the consultant who worked on the establishment of the new College of Agriculture, Professor Oluwafemi Balogun.
In his vote of thanks, the Chairman of the committee, Okojie, thanked the governor for the confidence reposed in them to build a befitting College of Agriculture in the state.