OAU @ 60: How Ogun Agric. Commissioner was Applauded for being a Worthy Alumni


Dateline was , Wednesday, the 24th of November, 2021. The occasion was the 60th anniverssary  of the prestigious citadel of Higher learning, the Obafemi Awolowo University, ile-ife.

Thus,  as part of the activities lined up for the event which was the Institute  of Agricultural Research and Training, ( IAR&T ) Day, the  Award winning Commissioner of Agriculture  in Ogun State, Dr. Adeola Odedina was invited as the Chairman of  the occasion for being a worthy  alumni of the institution.

The theme of the lecture for the event was " Influence  of Agricbusiness on Sustainable Food Production: The role of University- based Research Institutes." There and then, the Vice Chancellor of the institution, Professor Eyitope Ogunbodede who was represented by the Deputy  Vice- Chancellor(Administration), Professor Yomi Daramola applauded Dr. Odedina,not only for his contributions to Agricultural development in Ogun State,  but  for his sterling role in the advancement of Agticulture in Nigeria. 

He said " We appreciate your contributions towards the advancement of agriculture in Nigeria generally and Ogun State especially".

The Vice- Chancellor informed that the institute is an integral part of the University, with the signing of a Charter in 1969 by the then Military Governor of Western State and the then Vice- Chancellor of the University of Ife( now Obafemi Awolowo  University, a synergy which had seen the institute contribute meaningfully towards the attainment of Food Security. 

The day as he said was therefore set aside " to showcase the activities and achievements of the institute in its fifty-two years of existence in the area of Agticulture."

Declaring the event open, the Honourable Commissioner of Agriculture  in Ogun State, Dr. Adeola Odedina went memory lane and somewhat emotional.

He said " I  consider today's  occasion  a real home coming for me. This is because I schooled: Serrved(NYSC) and worked @ OAU; IAR&T . As a matter of fact, I  got my job the second day after I served at the institute. Let me therefore say it unequivocally that whatever we are doing well in Ogun State, you can see IAR&T in it."

 "It is home coming for me like I said. I want to congratulate OAU for the celebration. So, anywhere we are talking about Agriculture, it has to be OAU or IAR&T. Again, I want to congratulate the University for keeping the union." 

Dr. Odedina while emphasising the importance of Agruculture  to the socio-economic development of the society,  informed that everyone wants Agriculture  to provide solutions to the myriads of problems plaguing humanity, especially in Nigeria ranging  from, poverty, hunger, unemployment , foreign exchange earnings, economic growth, food security and even security among others.

He however said in view of this, it has  become imperative for practitioners to keep the flag at a high mast in order to meet societal expectations.

He lamented the fact that everyone is now an Agriculture  experts  especially on the internet, but warns that, when people get their fingers burnt, they should be honest enough to admit that it was due to their lack of knowledge and stop saying Agruculture is not profitable, a statement which according to him  dissuade millions of others from venturing into Agriculture.

He concluded with this rather probing statement "Agriculture  is the way out, but not the easy way out."

The Director, Institute of Agricultural Research& Training, Professor  Veronica Obatolu in an  address was also full of commendation for the Ogun State Commissioner for Agriculture,  Dr. Adeola Odedina.

She said " Permit me to put on record the untiring efforts of the indefatigable  Honourable Commissioner  of Agriculture  in Ogun State,  Dr. Adeola Odedina towards the development of Agriculture  and making the Gateway State self sufficient in food production. I want to sincerely appreciate you for believing in the institute".

Professor Obatolu also appreciated the  Commissioner for inviting the institute  to be part of Agricultural  development  in Ogun State.

 "In so many occasions,he has invited us to deliberate on how to develop the state Agricultural  sector both in soil testing and training  of farmers. I want to sincerely thank you for believing in the institute and what we can do.", she concluded.

Delivering the lecture on the topic" Influence  of Agricbusiness on Sustainable Food Production: The Role of University- based Research Institute, the Director General , Oyo State Agricbusiness Development Agency, Dr. Debo Akande observed that for Agriculture  to properly play its role in the emancipation of the people and the nation, the town and the gown must properly meet ,saying Agricultural experts  must be engaged in  critical policy areas, while also saying that  opportunities abound in Agriculture which farmers can tap into if they are properly tutored.

The Commissioner was accompanied to the event by the Director,  Produce Service of the Ministry of Agriculture  in Ogun State, Alhaji Shamsideen Adenopo and the  Director  Agric Services Mrs. Shodiya-Soetan Josephine who are both alumni of OAU  as  well as the  Director Fisheries, Mrs.Ojelabi Victoria, among others.

Other dignitaries include the Olupo of Olupona, Oba Emmanuel Fadare II, Chairman Organising committee of OAU @ 60 , Professor Charles Ukaeje, 

Dean faculty of Agriculture, Professor Akinloye Jimoh Farinde, Head of Department  of Plant Science, Professor Babatunde  Susan, Former Director IAR&T, Professor James Adediran, Coordinator IAR&T South West Farmer Research Input Linkage System, Professor Ogunsunmi and Head of IAR&T Livestock System Professor Ajayi, Head, Soil and Water Manangement of OAU, Professor Oluwatosin.

Also present at the event are, Chairman, Committee of Dean, Prof. Sowande,  HOD, Agric. Extension & Rural Development - Dr. S. A. Adesoji,HOD, Agric. Economics - Prof. A. A. Akinola, Prof. O. K. Adekunle - Immediate Past Dean, Faculty of Agric, Prof. D. J. Oyedele, Dept. of Soil Science & Land Resources Mgt, Prof. A. A. Amusan, Dept.  of Soil Science & Land Resources Mgt,HOD, Animal Sciences,Prof. E. O. Akinfala, HOD, Soil Science & Land Resources Mgt, HOD, Soil Science & Land Resources Mgt. - Dr. M. K. Idowu as well as other researchers from the academia, educationists and  members of the University community.

Dr. Odedina with his entourage later went on tour of exhibition stands to appreciate some of the Agricultural  produce  on display.

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