By Adebayo Fajinmi
Governor Gboyega Oyetola of Osun state, who in March last year reversed the single school uniform in public schools,reclassified schools and stopped single-sex schools introduced by the former governor,Rauf Aregbesola whom he served as the Chief of Staff has explained reasons he repealed the policies when he assumed office.
The governor revealed the reasons in Abuja at NAN Forum, while speaking during the flagship interview programme of the News Agency of Nigeria(NAN).
He stated that his decision was borne out of the demand of the people of the state who called for the reversal of the 4-5-3-4 policy introduced by his predecessor.
Oyetola noted that there were indications that the policies were not in line with what parents and students in the state wanted at the time.
He added that the previous policies,according to security reports,were encouraging cultism and other social vices among students in the state.
He said that the abolition of the policies was part of the recommendations of a committee of experts set up to review the initiatives in the education sector.
“When we came on board, we decided to look at the totality of the activities of government.
“We went round to do a thank you tour for the people who voted us in and where we decided to harvest all their demands.
“Part of what they came up with in their report was that the people said they didn’t want this single uniform policy.
“In any case, when I wanted to contest in 2018, I was taken to task on this same policy.
“I told the people then that no policy is ever rigid. Policies are meant to be reviewed constantly, so if people say they don’t want it, why not? We will look at it.
“And that was exactly what we did in this case. Mind you, it was not a unilateral decision.
“We set up a committee of highly respected professionals, especially professors of education, to help us look at the totality of our education sector and its policies, and come up with recommendations.
“These are the likes of Professors Olu Aina, Ibidapo-Obe and others; they came up with these recommendations which are part of what we are implementing.”
Another Controversial Policy
On March 3, 2021, TOS NEWS reported that Osun State House of Assembly reversed another controversial policy of former governor Rauf Aregbesola , by passing the Osun State Local Government Administration Amendment 2021 into law.
According to the bill, ”the administration at local government level has been reversed from the parliamentary system initiated by Aregbesola to a presidential systemsystem”.”
The bill which was sponsored by the Speaker of the assembly, Timothy Owoeye, for a law to amend the Local Government Administration No. 6 law of 2016 and other connected purposes has now given the governor of the state the power to fill vacant positions in the local governments.
Speaking at the plenary, Owoeye said section 2 (a) of the State of Osun Local Government Administration amendment No. 6 Bill 2016 is amended forthwith as “Where a Local Government Council, Local Council Development Areas or Area Council is dissolved and no election has been conducted to reconstitute the council or it has become impracticable to immediately conduct election to fill the vacancies thereby created, the Governor shall appoint a Caretaker Management Committee to run the affairs of the council for a period not exceeding six months.
“The Local Government Caretaker Management Committee shall comprise the Chairman, Vice Chairman, Scribe to the Local Government and a member from each of the wards in the local Government Area or Local Council Development Area. In case of an Area Council, an Administrator shall be appointed.
“The appointments shall be subjected to the confirmation of the House of Assembly”.
Four months after, in July, Oyetola inaugurated caretaker committees in state’s local government areas and local council development areas.
However, Aregbesola, during his administration said the parliamentary system at the local level was to deepen democracy and offer greater political representation and governance effectiveness than any other system.