The Oyo State Government has announced the suspension of the ongoing capacity building for members of the State School Governing Boards in honour of the five participants who died in an accident on Oyo-Ogbomoso Road on Wednesday.
While the five participants, three of whom were secondary school principals, one account officer and their drivers, died in the accident, six others who sustained injuries are receiving treatment at the Bowen University Teaching Hospital, Ogbomoso.
The remaining four victims of the accident, who sustained minor injuries, had since been discharged from the hospital.
They were all returning to Ogbomoso after the workshop organized for members of the School Governing Boards by Centre for Organizational and Professional Ethics (COPE) in conjunction with the State Ministry of Education, Science and Technology in Oyo township when the incident occurred.
A statement issued in Ibadan on Friday by the state Commissioner for Education, Prof. Adeniyi Olowofela, said the training for Ibarapa/Kajola and Saki/Irepo Zones earlier scheduled for January 25 and 26, had been suspended until further notice.
Besides, Olowofela, who had earlier led a delegation of top government officials on a condolence visit to the families of the deceased, said that government would foot the bill for the treatment of the injured.
While expressing regret over the incident which he described as unfortunate and shocking, the commissioner condoled with the families of the deceased on behalf of the Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi and the government and prayed for the repose of their souls.
He however cautioned against politicization of the sad incident which, he said, called for sobriety and sympathy with the deceased families and the education community in the state.
Olowofela said: “This is not the time to whip up unnecessary sentiments, which will not help the situation on ground. Accidents are natural phenomena that occur even in homes and even within the township.
“Oyo State Government is sensitive to the welfare and wellbeing of its workers and the citizens in general. Hence, the workshop was spread across five centres in line with the zonal standing of the state.
According to him, the programme for Ibadan city centre and Ibadan less city had earlier held successfully without any incident, adding that it was the incident occurred when the ‘patriots and dedicated governing board members’ were coming from the Oyo/Ogbomoso centre at Olivet Baptist High School, Oyo.
The commissioner said: “It is in the memory of the deceased that we have decided to suspend the workshop scheduled for Ibarapa/Kajola and Saki/Irepo centres till further notice.
“These heroes and heroine died in the line of duty and therefore, should be allowed to rest in peace. On behalf of the governor and the government of Oyo State, we had immediately visited the families of the deceased as well as those injured and recuperating at the hospital.
“We use this opportunity to call on the good people of Oyo State to join us in praying for the repose of the soul of the deceased and to stand by the bereaved families at this difficult period. May their souls rest in peace.’’.