After ten years, the Governor Seyi Makinde-led government of Oyo State on Thursday ordered the reopening of 23 schools in Atiba, Afijio, Oyo East and Oyo West local government areas to end a border dispute in the region.
Speaking at a stakeholders meeting yesterday at the Western Hall, the Secretariat, Ibadan, Deputy Governor, Barr. Bayo Lawal intervened in the border crisis and warned of further unrest.
Lawal, who is also chairman of the State Boundary Committee, urged the chairmen of Atiba, Afijio, Oyo East and Oyo West LGA to prioritize security and peace in their respective areas.
He warned that if security breaches occur, the presidents will be held responsible.
In a press release issued through the Commissioner for Information and Guidance, Oyo State, Prince Dotun Oyelade, the Deputy Governor, said the Ministry of Education will be responsible for monitoring the schools once they reopen.
He emphasized that the ministry will take all necessary measures to ensure that children can return to school.
He further urged members of the Oyo State House of Assembly representing the affected constituencies to work with community leaders to facilitate the return of children to school.
Lawal expressed his gratitude to the Chairman of the Oyo Global Forum, an impartial group of professionals from the four LGAs that make up Oyo Federal Constituency.
The Deputy Governor commended their dedication to the progress of the affected schools.
Furthermore, he assured stakeholders that the office of the Surveyor General would intervene in the inter-communal boundary dispute. He appealed to community leaders to abide by the decision of the Oyo State Government regarding the schools.
His words read: “I appeal to you, our elders and chairmen of the affected local authorities, to think about the future of these children. The main reason why this meeting is being held is that the schools that were closed for ten years will reopen immediately. That is the message from the governor himself.”
“We have involved all stakeholders, community leaders, honorable members, the chairmen of the various local governments, and we have agreed that schools should reopen in the interest of those children.”
Others are Adebimpe Community Primary School, Oyo; Obasere Community Primary School, Oyo; St. Thomas Anglican School Alabi Olorunda, Oyo; St. Michael RCM Apaara village, Oyo; Ajagba Methodist Primary School, Oyo; Christened Central School Oniyanrin, Oyo; Baptismal Aguo Primary School, Oyo; ADS Primary School Baba Elesin, Oyo in Oyo East LG.
Also affected are LA School Lannite, Oyo; LA Gudugbu Orile Primary School, Oyo; LA Gudugbu Primary School, Oyo; ADS Primary School Aba Olori, Oyo; ADS Primary Abujakan, Oyo; LA Primary School Alagbon, Oyo and LA Primary School Imeleke, Oyo also in Oyo East LG.
The meeting was attended by the Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Prof. Salihu Adelabu; the Executive Chairman of Oyo State Universal Basic Education Board, Dr. Nureni Aderemi Adeniran; Chairmen of the four local authorities; traditional leaders, among other stakeholders.