Ilesa Grammar School 1967/71 Set is To Commission Multi Million Naira Renovated Empire Building .

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Caption: left Mr Akin Ajayi Obe, Chairman of 50th graduation anniversary committee, Engr Kayode Adejuyigbe, Chairman,Ilesa Grammar School Old Students Association 1967/71 set and Engr Segun Ajayi, Financial Secretary in front of the newly renovated Empire Building

 

By Engineer Olusegun Ajayi

Empire Building  an iconic and historic edifice in the centre of Ilesa Grammar School premises is to be commissioned on Saturday 27 November 2021.

The old building was highly revered by both teachers and students of the school.

Old building

The foundation stone of the building was laid as Science laboratory by His Excellency, Sir Arthur Richards, Governor of Nigeria on 5th April, 1947. This same building was renovated by His Lordship, Justice S. M. A. Belgore, retired Chief Justice of Nigeria, a distinguished old student of the school in February, 2009.

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The building was abandoned for years by the immediate past administration of the state, ex Governor Rauf Aregbesola.

Despite the advice of distinguished old students of the school led by Late Governor Lateef Jakande of Lagos State and Pastor Enoch Adeboye, General Overseer of Redeemed Christian Church of God moved all students of Ilesa Grammar School to his new Ilesa Government High School and also changed our highly cherished school uniform.

New building

Empire Building used to be science laboratories building initially and later HSC block when a new laboratories were built and commissioned in 1970. As fate would have it, the school authority moved our classrooms to the Empire Building in our final year in 1971.

Unfortunately, the building like other buildings in Ilesa Grammar School were abandoned during the inglorious Aregbesola era. However, his successor, Governor Gboyega Oyetola listened to the voices of the people of Osun State, reversed the obnoxious policy by returning the original names and uniforms of the schools. The old students association will always be grateful to His Excellency, Governor Oyetola.

When the Ilegrams 1967/71 set came to the school for 2019 reunion program, we saw the dilapidated and ruins of this edifice.

Consequently, we took up the gigantic challenge to restore its lost glory. This project started in December, 2020. Many members and their friends contributed money, some actively participated in the supervision of the project while others assisted in prayers.

The galloping inflation in the country delayed its completion.
Prior to this time, we have carried out the following major projects in the school :
(1) Renovation of the three science laboratories at a cost of N10m
(2) Sponsorship of summer school for SS2 students
(3)Payment of WAEC fees for 100 students
(4)Scholarship award for an indigent but brilliant old student of the school to study Pharmacy in Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife in 2018
(5) Adoption of a student for University education at OAU, Ile Ife by a member of the association.

Finally, I wish to thank the Governor of the State, Gboyega Oyetola and his cabinet, all members of the Ilesa Grammar School Old Students Association, 1967/71 especially Chairman of the set, Engr Kayode Adejuyigbe, all members of his executive, the Chairman of Empire Building Project Committee Engr Bayo Olarewaju Alo and Chairman of the 50th graduation anniversary committee, Akin Ajayi Obe for their efforts in making today a reality.

We thank they  Almighty God that the Ilesa Grammar School Old Students Association, 1967/1971 set are able to mark our 50th graduation anniversary with the presentation of the #25m renovated Empire Building to the school. We have given back to our great school that produced us. Glory be to God.

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