It was a joyous moment yesterday as the newly elected Executives of the National Association of Ilaje Students (NAIS) paid a courtesy visit to the Chairman, Ondo State Oil Producing Areas Development Commission (OSOPADEC), Sam Erejuwa in his office.
Welcoming the students, Erejuwa congratulated them for their election victories and the privilege to lead the Association, charging them to remain responsible indigenes of Ilaje and good ambassadors of their Fatherland.
In his words, “if you want to go far in life, you need to be connected to God and live a responsible lifestyle. Stay away from cultism, drugs, prostitution and other anti-social behaviours. You equally need to have role models who have distinguished themselves and whose lives are worthy of emulation.”
Assuring the students and the entire youths of the mandate areas of the Commission’s resolve to prioritize their interest, Erejuwa said arrangement is on top gear for academic activities to commence at the School of Maritime, Logistics and Transport; a satellite campus of the Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology (OAUSTECH) cited in Ugbonla. The initiative he said is a divine inspiration aimed at equipping the youth of the mandate areas, most especially young graduates with skills in oil and gas for self-reliance and better opportunities in the labour market.
The President of the Students’ Body, Comr. Agbejoye Kehinde on behalf of his Executives and the entire Members of the Association commended Sam Erejuwa for being a responsive father and an accessible leader. He prayed for more wisdom and clearer vision to pilot the affairs of the Commission to a greater height.
While appreciating the Commission for supporting the educational pursuits of students from the mandate areas studying in different tertiary institutions across the country through its bursary awards, Com. Agbejoye appealed to the Chairman to ensure that the outstanding beneficiaries of the last bursary scheme are paid, as the kind gesture has always been of tremendous assistance to the students. He further highlighted some of the key needs of the association to include: a functional secretariat, means of transportation and the general welfare of their members across the country.
Responding, Sam Erejuwa reiterated that OSOPADEC as an interventionist Agency is not only committed to physical and infrastructural development of the mandate areas, but equally concerned about human capital development (especially the youths and the students).
According to him, the payment of stipends (bursary) is to relieve and encourage the students. As part of the Commission’s efforts to make applications for the next edition smooth, Erejuwa said the process will now be fully computerised to allow the students apply and submit their applications for processing anywhere they are. While their physical appearance would only be required in the Commission during biometrics capturing.
Erejuwa further stressed that the Commission is keenly interested in providing mentorship and leadership training for the students as long as they are ready to embrace peace and dialogue in the course of agitating for their genuine entitlements.
He affirmed that his utmost Joy is to see the mandate areas and its people progressing during his tenure as he promised to be fair to all.