The Alake of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo in a warm handshake
with the Panel Chairman, Prof. Ochapa Onazi during the visit to the Monarch
The Alake and Paramount Ruler of Egbaland, Oba Adedotun Aremu Gbadebo, has assured the Federal Government of the preparedness of Egbaland, for the impending change in status of the University of Agriculture, Abeokuta (UNAAB), to a poly-academic institution.
Oba Gbadebo reiterated the assurance, when members of the Presidential Visitation Panel to the University, paid him a courtesy call, in his palace at Ake, Abeokuta.
Addressing members of the Panel, accompanied by the Vice-Chancellor, Professor Oluwafemi Olaiya Balogun, Principal Officers and top officials of the University, Oba Gbadebo, said the Egba are “most delighted and totally supportive of the recent decision of the Federal Government to expand the scope of operations of specialized Universities to poly-academic institutions”.
However, the Paramount Ruler said, it was expedient of the Federal Government to transform UNAAB to a poly-academic institution, moreso that “Egbaland missed the opportunity to host the nation’s premier University in 1948, when the decision for the location of the then University College, that is today known as the University of Ibadan, was at the last minute changed from Abeokuta”.
He stressed that “the pain of the loss till today, remains bitter and better imagined”, observing the fact that Egbaland has ever remained trail-blazer in the pursuit of Western education, among all tribes of the nation.
Besides, Oba Gbadebo pointed out that there were adequate facilities, available to provide the required infrastructure for a smooth take-off, of UNAAB transformation.
The Alake listed the facilities to include the Federal Medical Centre, Idi-Aba, Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital, Aro and the Federal College of Education, Osiele.
He appealed to the Panel to give prominence to Egba’s demand for a conventional University in their recommendation to President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan.
Oba Gbadebo, had earlier extolled the sterling qualities of the Chairman and members of the Visitation Panel, saying their antecedents and credentials were intimidating.
According to the monarch, the Panel was packed full of highly-experienced technocrats and professionals, adding, ” I have no doubt as to your capability to discharge the Presidential assignment with utmost diligence and discretion”.