By Jibola Oyekunle
Journeying in the entourage of Osun State Governor, Adegboyega Oyetola from Osogbo to Ede on Monday, September 16, 2019 would remind you of what Medza embarked upon in Mongo Beti’s “Mission to Kala”.
In the award winning novel published in African Writers Series, Medza was the protagonist who travelled to his village in Southern Cameroons after an unsuccessful outing in his college examination.
But unlike Medza, who set out in some trepidation, the people’s governor was, as usual, radiating the confidence of an unstoppable achiever who has been delivering on his campaign promises to the good people of the state.
Coming in remarkable fulfilment of such promises, albeit in part, is a major overhaul of the health sector through building, renovation, rehabilitation, upgrading and revitalisation of 332 Primary Health care Centres (PHCs) one-per-ward across the state.
And Adejuwon, a sedate community in Ede-North Local Government Area of Osun State, happens to be one of the beneficiaries of this laudable project.
So, on Monday, Ede became Oyetola’s first port of call after he had flagged off the inauguration of PHCs with the one at Sabo, Olorunda Local Government Area and another at Odi-Olowo in Osogbo Local Government Area of the state.
The weather was tranquil and the ride was smooth as the convoy pranced jauntily on the well-tarred road leading to the rustic community.
The journey was as significant as it is symbolic, considering the belief in some quarters that Ede, as a whole, is a political stronghold of the opposition Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
This impression, however, may soon become a thing of the past with the good people of Ede gradually accepting Oyetola as the right man for the job of steering the affairs of Osun even beyond the year 2022.
From the behemoth crowd awaiting the governor’s arrival in the hinterland of Adejuwon, you could see on the faces of residents the appreciation, the gaiety and hearty acceptance of the man that, no doubt, cares about their health and their entire well-being.
From the sprawling outskirts of Akoda-Ede through the boisterous Owode-Ede market and its adjoining communities to Adejuwon village, it was a come-one, come-all for the apparently elated bystanders hailing the convoy with unmistakable thump-ups suggesting to the governor to keep up the good work.
The intriguing experience was that of a stand-still as residents thronged the venue of the inauguration in number and one could see how appreciative they were from words of gratitude to their encouraging expressions and their ready-to-smile faces.
Their joy was accentuated when the governor in his address assured them of his administration’s unshakable commitment to the welfare of not only the people of Ede but also the entire citizens of the state.
“The renovation and revitalisation of this health centre will signal the arrival of improved healthcare delivery and well-being in this community and its environs,” the governor said.
He assured that his administration would continue to prioritise the health of the people in the state, as building a peaceful and prosperous state starts with good health. He appealed to the people to patronise the hospitals and put into good use, the facilities being put in place.
According to him, the revitalisation initiative is a holistic programme that covers renovation of facilities, provision of modern equipment, supply of drugs, training and retraining of staff and employment of technology to power healthcare delivery for optimum results.
Earlier before the governor’s address, the State Chairman of All Progressives Congress (APC), Prince Gboyega Famoodun had assured the people of Ede of Oyetola’s unstinting love for them as evident in the developmental projects being carried out in the communities.
He said, “The governor is here to visit us and to inaugurate the renovated and revitalised Primary Healthcare centre in this community. This centre is, no doubt, for the benefit of Adejuwon and Ede. This is the second time we are visiting Ede in two months. The governor was here earlier in Ede to commission the fire service station.
“The road that leads to this place was tarred by our government. The government that doesn’t love a town and its people would not construct the road leading to such town. The governor loves Ede, its people and the state at large. May God protect Ede, protect our party and give our governor the grace to continue the good works.”
The good tidings on the State of Osun health care system had been in the news for a while, spreading on all media like wild fire.
It came in such an incredible proportion that cynics would easily dismiss it as nothing but mere facade — and to the pessimists a fictitious tale by the moonlight. But this is for real as 175 out of the 332 PHCs have been awarded, of which 100 have been completed while others are at varying advanced stages of completion.
The inauguration of the completed healthcare centres is being done on a batch-by-batch basis. Between Monday and Wednesday, 25 out of the already completed 100 PHCs were earmarked for inauguration at different parts of the state.
By Tuesday, no fewer than 17 with three in Ilesa alone had been inaugurated. The PHCs in Ilesa, Sabo, Odi-Olowo both in Osogbo and that of Adejuwon in Ede were personally inaugurated by the governor, while PHC Odesan and PHC Fayemi Ikija, all in Ife-South Local Government Area, were inaugurated by the Deputy Governor, Mr. Benedict Alabi.
Also, PHC Anwo, Irepodun Local Government Area and PHC Akinorun, Ifelodun Local Government Area and PHC Ifewara, Atakunmosa -West Local Government Area, were inaugurated by the Chief of Staff to the governor, Dr. Charles Akinola; Head of Service, Dr. Festus Olowogboyega Oyebade and Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Prince Wole Oyebamiji in that order.
Keen observers of Oyetola’s performance in the last few months can attest to the fact that the governor loves the people of Ede as much as he loves the people of the state.
It will be recalled that one of the 11 fully equipped fire service stations being built by Oyetola’s administration across the state was located in Ede.
Only a few weeks ago, Mr. Governor visited the ancient town to commission the fire station. This is in addition to making it the first to benefit from the ongoing road reconstruction and rehabilitation programme of the government.
In Oyetola lies all you need to know about responsible and responsive leadership devoid of all manners of colouration, either sentimental or political. A pure case of the will of God, one may say.
Jibola Oyekunle is Senior Special Assistant (Media) to Governor Adegboyega Oyetola.
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