By Adeola Badru
IN fulfilment of Governor Seyi Makinde’s promise, pupils of public and private primary schools and junior secondary schools in Oyo State came out in large number on Thursday to write the state’s placement examination into JSS1, popularly called ‘Common Entrance’ and Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) as well as the Competitive Entrance Examination into Schools of Science in the state.
The exercise which was monitored by Head of Service in the state, Mrs Ololade Agboola was certified satisfactory in comparison to the number that previously sat for the same examinations in the past, due to the fact that the state declared that no student should pay for any of the examinations.
Mrs Agboola said it would be on record that the unprecedented number of pupils that sat for each of the three examinations indicated that the state government has done the needful towards reducing the number of out-of-school children in the state.
Oyo State was one of the states that have the highest number of out-of-school children in the 2019 report of the Universal Basic Education Commission.
On assumption of office, Governor Seyi Makinde announced immediate stoppage of school fees and any payment for public examinations in Oyo State.
Mrs Agboola said: “We have seen the direct impact of the declaration by Governor Makinde against payment of school fees and examination fees for public primary and secondary schools in Oyo State.”
“The number is unprecedented as confirmed by the education administrators and even parents that came with their wards to the examination centres were too happy for the gesture of this administration.”
“We are using this opportunity to call on teachers and school administrators to key into this laudable effort of the state government to bring back to school, the children that have left and are engaging in things inimical to their own future and the future of our nation.”
The Head of Service who monitored the Common Entrance Examination Exercise with the management team of the Ministry of Education, Science and Technology in Ibadan Metropolis and other parts of the state declared that materials needed for the examinations were adequately supplied, which made the exercise flawless and hitch-free.
She, however, advised parents to support the present administration under the leadership of Governor Makinde in his educational policies to take the state to greater heights among its peers.
In another development, the weekly environmental sanitation in the state witnessed the closure of six shops including a food canteen and a butcher’s shop along Old Ife road and Gbagi area in Ibadan for flouting the state’s environmental sanitation and waste management law.
The act was in accordance with the recent agreement made by stakeholders during an advocacy programme on environmental laws organised by Oyo State Government to leverage on environmental laws in its bid to ensure a healthy and safe environment.
The Director of Environmental Health Officers for the Ministry of Environment and Water Resources, Sanitarian Olusoji Oyewole who led the enforcement team, said it was surprising that despite the campaign efforts of the present administration against the scourge of filth and maintenance of the healthy and safe environment, some shop owners were still violating the environmental regulation.
He further warned traders, shop owners, motorists and the general public to desist from violating the sanitation laws which include dumping of refuse indiscriminately, construction of shanties on drainage, display of wares and food items at the road set back and under high – tension wires among others as mobile court would soon be established to prosecute residents that violate environmental sanitation law in the state.
“It is disheartening that despite the efforts of the State government to bring to a halt, the culture of filth through indiscriminate refuse dumping, lackadaisical attitude to environmental exercise on Thursdays and other regulations, some are still found doing same.”
“All these regulations are for our own good. We will spend less on the maintenance of our health and you will see that the governments strive to make the State an investor-friendly will be successful.”
“The mobile court that will see to the immediate dispensation of justice to environmental”
Mr Oyewole, therefore, enjoined all and sundry to embrace cleaning ness, adding that environmental issue is a collective responsibility.