It was a reward for hard work; it was a reward for being a worthy ambassador and worthy alumnus as the Ogun State Commissioner for Agriculture, Dr. Adeola Odedina on Thursday, 16th of December,2021 was conferred with the award of distinguished Centenary Alumnus of the Federal College of Agricultural Technology, Moor Plantation, Ibadan.
The Award ceremony which was part of the week-long event to mark the centenary celebration of the foremost institution which is the first Agricultural institution in Nigeria and by extension, West Africa was conferred on two other distinguished alumnus, Prof. Shola Daramola and Mr. Zakare Abubakar.
The Provost of the Institution, Dr.(Mrs) Elizabeth Augustus while given the rationale for the recognition, said the award was for their outstanding contributions to the development of Agricultural sector in the country.
She added that the awardees have distinguished themselves in different fields of endeavours and as a result deserve to be appreciated and awarded for their services to humanity.
“These individuals have been carefully selected as recipients of our awards today. They have exceptionally distinguished themselves in various endeavours of life and we deemed it fit to appreciate and award them for services to humanity, especially through agriculture”
“Your outstanding contributions to the development of the Agricultural sector stands you out for this award and the College is particularly proud of your exploits.Your dedicated service to the nation and humanity in general is an inspiration to the younger generation”, she said.
She went down memory lane on the establishment of the Federal Collage of Agriculture, Moore Plantation,Ibadan ” The history of the College is intricately woven with the inception of Moor Plantation, the location named after Sir Ralph Moor, British High Commissioner in Nigeria. The Moor Plantation was the location for the establishment of a Model Rubber Farm in 1899″.
In his words, the Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Mohammad Mahmood Abubakar, represented by the Zonal Director, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Mrs Omolara Oguntuyi, congratulated the graduating students and charged them never to be afraid of rising to the top, urging them to add new skills to whatever they have been taught at the institution.
According to the Minister, if there is any area that the country is ripe for Entrepreneurial development, it is the Agricultural sector, saying Agricultural practice that will transform the society must have a global outlook.
Responding, after receiving the Award l, Dr. Odedina said after “It is a great honour to be recognized from the institution where I schooled ,served, worked and served as Provost, because I later became the Provost of the Federal College of Agriculture, Akure which has a symbiotic relationship with this institution. I can safely say that I dedicate all my life to this institution”
He stated further “t is the beginning of new relationship with the Federal College of Agriculture, Moor Plantation, Ibadan because, one good turn deserves another”.
To his colleagues and the graduands,he said ” I want to urge my colleagues and the graduands to take a cue and strive to see to it that whatever they find themselves doing, they do it well, because what is worth doing is worth doing well”
The Commissioner had earlier in a goodwill message urged the graduands to take more interest in Agriculture, saying if the country fails in Agriculture, it is because the graduates of Agricultural Technology have failed to participate.
” We are in the era of focus on Agriculture. I want to urge you the graduands, don’t let the internet Agricultural Consultants defeat you. If we fail in Agriculture, it is because you have refused to participate”, he adds.
While further enjoining the graduands, he said “let me tell you this, whatever you see in me that is good; whatever you see in Ogun State Agricultural Ministry that is good, you are seeing the College of Agricultural Technology in me. My Governor won the Best Governor in Agriculture, twice. It is to the glory of God and the stuff we are made of as graduates of College of Agriculture”.
In a goodwill message, one of the Awardees, Professor Daramola who was the Provost when Dr. Odedina was an undergraduate was also full of eulogies for his former student who is now the Ogun State Commissioner for Agriculture.
He said:”This is a college I am proud of.This school has produced so many eminent people in various field and this man is one of them, Dr. Adeola Odedina. The laurels won in the field of Agriculture; God has made him the eminent person working behind to achieve some of them.He is a very humble person”
” I recall, sometimes ago, when I had the cause to get in touch with him, he said my oga, you taught me Soil Science and with that statement I was as tall as a cocoa tree. So, my colleagues please whatever you hands finds doing, do it.well”.
And, to the students, he said “make sure you get the knowledge that will make you a good asset. If Dr. Odedina had not been able to equip himself,he would not be performing the wonder that God is using him to perform”, he concluded.
Earlier, Dr Odedina had joined the representative of the Honourable Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Mohammed Mahmoud Abubakar, who is the Zonal Director, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, Mrs Omolara Folasade Abimbola Oguntuyi to commission the Modern Meteorological Station which is a digital weather monitoring equipment built by the institution; a 500 KVA transformer and the centenary road as well as to inspect the institution’s Health Centre and the ongoing construction of lecture theaters for students and the unveiling of Centenary logo.
The graduands were conferred with the Award of National Diplomas and Higher National Diplomas in Agriculture Engineering Technology, Agric Engineer, Crop Production option and Post Harvest Production option, Agric Engineering, Post Harvest Production and Home and Rural Sciences,Horticulture among others.
In the Commissioner’s entourage were his childhood friend who is also an Alumnus of the institution,Professor Kola Adebayo from the Department of Agricultural Extension and Rural Development, Federal University of Agriculture, Abeokuta, the Project Manager, Ogun State Agricultural Development Programme, Deaconess.Taiwo Ayansanwo, the Director, Extension Services, Mrs Solape Awe, Director Produce Services, Alhaji Shamsideen Adenopo and Director, Veterinary Services, Dr. Taiwo Jolaoso.
Members of the Alumni Association,Federal College of Agriculture, Akure including, Mr. Babayemi Akintayo Thompson, Mr Arigbede Oyewunmi and Mr Adeeko Henry Olusola were also on hand to honour one of their own.
Also present at the event was the representative of the Permanent Secretary, Federal Ministry of Agriculture, and the Director and Special Assistant to the Permanent Secretary,Dr. Joel Adeoye, Dr Buljan Umar , who represented the Executive Secretary, Agricultural Research Council of Nigeria, Professor Garba Hamidu Sharubutu, Chairman, Governing Board, Federal College of Agriculture, Ibadan, Chief (Dr.) Maria Olateju Philips, Former, Provost, Federal College of Agriculture,Engineer B.A Adeleke, Former Provost, Federal College of Animal Health and Production Technology, Ibadan, Dr. Friday Nwogu, Current Provost, Federal College of Animal Health and Production Technology, Dr. Owosinbo, Former
Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Oyo State, Dr. Okesola as well as the Ogun State Chairman, Nigeria Labour Congress,Mr. Emmanuel Bankole, who is also an Alumnus among others.
The event later witnessed the launch of the Journal of Agriculture and Bio- Engineering Services as part of the institution’s contribution to research and development in the country.