Sanwo-Olu increases bursary, scholarship for indigenes, physically challenged

…Appoints four former Students Union leaders as SSAs

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Tuesday, announced an increment in scholarship and bursary for students of Lagos State origin, in tertiary institutions.

He said his administration from 2024 will pay N225,000 and N60,000 as scholarship and bursary to indigene students, as against the existing N200,000 and N50,000 respectively.

The Governor also announced scholarships for the less privileged and physically challenged students in public tertiary institutions, noting that the scholarship will not be limited to Lagos indigene alone.

He also announced the appointment of four former Students Union leaders as his Senior Special Assistants (SSAs). The appointed SSAs were Eniola Opeyemi, Kayode Samuel, Giwa Moore and Adeola Adewunmi.

Governor Sanwo-Olu spoke during a One-Day Interactive Session between him and Students Union Leaders and Stakeholders in Lagos State, organised by the Ministry of Tertiary Education, with the theme: “Students as Strategic Partners in the Governance Process: Challenges and Prospects for Youth Development.”

The event held at the Adeyemi Bero Hall, Alausa, was attended by members of the State cabinet, stakeholders in the tertiary education sector and delegates from 13 public tertiary institutions in Lagos State, which included Lagos State University, University of Lagos, Lagos State University of Science and Technology, Lagos State University of Education and Yaba College of Technology, among others.

Speaking during the interactive session, which lasted for over three hours, Governor Sanwo-Olu said his administration would continue to engage students constructively and enhance infrastructure in public institutions.

He said his administration will continue to develop an enduring and sustainable ecosystem to create a liveable as well as workable environment for students in all the public tertiary institutions in Lagos State.

Speaking on the importance of the interactive session, Governor Sanwo-Olu said the meeting is “apt because of the trending events in our State and Nigeria. It is a confidence-building process between the government and the governed. It is an opportunity for students and other stakeholders to vent their feelings, opinions, and suggestions on how to overcome challenges confronting our collective existence as a people.”

Governor Sanwo-Olu while reiterating his government’s renewed commitment to Youth Development, Social Inclusion and Gender Equality in line with the ‘+’ in his administration’s THEMES+ agenda, rolled out key achievements of his government in different sectors, particularly in the tertiary education sector and called for collaborations to develop an ecosystem to build a solid Student-University-Government relationship.

The Governor urged students to keep the hope alive and rest assured that their welfare and development will remain a top priority on his administration’s agenda.

Speaking earlier, Lagos State Commissioner for Tertiary Education, Mr. Tolani Sule, commended Governor Sanwo-Olu for his support, assuring that the Ministry would sustain the legacy of excellence as it continues to dialogue and engage students and management of tertiary institutions, as well as stakeholders in its bid to foster an atmosphere of peace.

The Commissioner said Governor Sanwo-Olu’s presence at the interactive session is a further demonstration of his administration’s commitment to quality tertiary education and youth development.

He said, ”A stakeholder engagement like this becomes necessary in view of the noble role that our youths have to play in our development agenda. I, therefore, commend Mr. Governor for giving accelerated approval to this programme, knowing fully that our youths hold the key to a greater tomorrow for our dear country.

“In spite of the present social economic challenges in the country, it is gratifying to note that the Lagos State government has continued to sustain the tempo of excellence in our tertiary institutions. Students and staff welfare have remained a top priority of the State government while various infrastructural development projects are either completed or ongoing across our campuses.

“This is leadership at play. In the last four and half years of this administration, it is remarkable to note that not any of our institutions have witnessed any student unrest nor staff industrial disharmony to warrant strike or closure of any of the State-owned  institutions

“Our academic calendars have been running smoothly since the beginning of this administration. We have continued to enjoy unprecedented stability in our academic calendars in the last four years. To me, it is a reflection of leadership quality and administrative excellence at the helm of affairs.”

Also speaking, the Guest Speaker and immediate past Vice Chancellor of Lagos State University, Prof. Olanrewaju Fagbohun, described Governor Sanwo-Olu as a man of legacy.

He commended the Babajide Sanwo-Olu administration for its constructive engagement, dialogue, collaborative problem-solving techniques and consultation.

Prof. Fagbohun also restated the need for regular consultation and prioritisation of students in the state for constructive criticism and engagement of government policies.

He also urged the state government to invest more in infrastructure, rethink student scholarships, subsidised health care services and establish fresh food markets on campuses as well as provide counseling and support for mental health issues to challenge the students to excel.

The Panel of Discussants, which comprised of Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, Mr. Tokunbo Wahab; Special Adviser to the Governor on Housing, Mrs. Barakat Odunuga-Bakare; former Majority Leader of Lagos State House of Assembly, Hon. Sanai Agunbiade and former Students Union President of Lagos State University (LASU), Lukman Amolegbe, said stakeholders in the tertiary education sector must work together with government to strengthen education in Lagos State.

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