A group, the Ipokia Youth Development Council (IYDC), has appealed to the governor Ibikunle Amosun of Ogun State, not to bow to the pressure by rescinding his administration’s decision to locate the proposed Ogun State Polytechnic in Ipokia town.
The Council said it found as disturbing and unbelievable, a newspaper publication which purportedly quoted the governor as saying the proposed polytechnic would now be sited in Idi-Iroko area of the state.
But the council argued that such would negate the laws that established the institution.
This position was contained in a release signed by the IYDC Publicity Secretary, Dare Olawin, and made available to journalists, on Wednesday, in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital.
The group further stated that it was aware of the ongoing intense lobby by certain individuals to ensure the institution takes off in Idi-Iroko and possibly site it there permanently, insisting such would go against the law which established the school with express emphasis on Ipokia.
It, however, recalled how Ipokia, in 1982 during late Olabisi Onabanjo’s administration, failed to get the proposed College of Education to be situated there which was duly gazetted, due to the sudden take-over of government by the military in 1983.
The development, according to the release, has made the town, the only local government headquarters in the state without a government educational institution.
It added such has also continued to put Ipokia youths in shackles of illiteracy and poverty.
The release reads in part: “We also wish to inform Your Excellency that all efforts made by Ipokia Community during Governor Gbenga Daniel’s administration to relocate the Tai Solarin College of Education at Ijebu-Ode to Ipokia Township following the upgrade of the College to a University of Education, proved unsuccessful. Instead, the College was relocated to Omu, Odogbolu local government.
“Similarly, the Government Model School earmarked for Ipokia township being the local government headquarters, is now situated in Idi-Iroko. Thus, Ipokia township remains the only old local government headquarters without a government educational institution.
“Indeed, to ensure the safety of staff and students, it will not be advisable to locate the polytechnic in Idiroko, a border town prone to sporadic shootings between customs and the smugglers.
“We want to stress that starting the Polytechnic in Idi-Iroko will be demoralising to the people of Ipokia and environ, who are already joyfully looking forward to the takeoff of the institution.
With the establishment of the Polytechnic, the Ogun State Government will not only be planting a tower of light tall enough to break the darkest part unknown, but also be providing a better safeguard of liberty for the generality of the youths in Ipokia and its environ”.
Abiodun Taiwo, Abeokuta