I read an article titled Osun: the storm foreseen, written by Mr Abiodun Komolafe and I cannot but wonder why someone will take the time to do a purported analysis of a state based on lies and figment of his imaginations.
It is indeed funny that someone would directly or indirectly allude to the fact that there had been no development in Osun since the assumption of office of Governor Gboyega Oyetola. This is not only laughable but an obvious vituperation of someone using personal bias to judge a situation.
The lyrical he waxed about the situation in Osun would normally be ignored as he is chasing shadows where none exists but for the barrage of lies and the tendency of the article to further give the wrong impression and create unnecessary friction within the All Progressive Congress (APC) family in the state and also give the impression that all is not well between Governor Oyetola and his predecessor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola.
I think I am also in a good position to respond as a key member of the Oyetola administration and as someone who served together with the author of the article in last administration.
My initial worry to Egbon Komolafe’s rhetorical assertion that nothing has changed within the last one year is because of the ulterior motive behind the write-up.
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I will however pretend he doesn’t know what is going on, hence I will give him facts and figures to show that he is really off track.
The government of Oyetola promised to fully rehabilitate 332 Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) on assumption of office and today , over 200 PHC have been fully revitalized and rehabilitated, this on its own is unprecedented in the history of Nigeria and the remaining 132 PHCs, I can attest, will be completed within the second year in office.
The General Hospital Ejigbo and the General Hospital, Ifetedo that were in totally bad conditions have been completely upgraded and remodelled. I would also like to remind the author that the Osun flagship Hospital, State Hospital Asubiaro, was an eyesore when Governor Gboyega Oyetola assumed office , the emergency ward had been taken over by monkeys, there was no water and the hospital was on a lifeline but today, it has been remodelled; the children’s ward has been fully rehabilitated, the blood bank and emergency wards have been rehabilitated and the water system improved on while the ultra modern theatre will be completed any moment from now.
Also, a 120- bed ward which is the biggest in the state was awarded and it is near completion in addition to a 30-flat doctor’s quarters which is also being built within Asubiaro complex; a whooping N600m was given to the health insurance scheme while over N500m was used to purchase basic drugs and equipment to equip the PHCs for the benefit of the people. What more can be grassroots oriented than taking care of the needs of the people; 90 per cent of the contractors who handled the PHCs and state hospitals are verifiable local contractors. In its determination to stem brain drain, Governor Oyetola approved the implementation of 100 per cent payment of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS) and Consolidated Health Salary Structure (CONHESS) for all categories of health workers. The approval puts an end to eight years of agitation for salary increment by medical practitioners in the state.
I will also like to remind the author that 10 major township roads have been fully rehabilitated by the Gboyega Oyetola administration including the Ede township road which was in a state of disrepair when the present administration assumed office. It is unfortunate that he didn’t see the prompt payment of full salaries as a major achievement in spite of the challenging debt profile of the state. As a major stakeholder, he should have asked Governor Oyetola the magic of the salary payment because continuous and prompt payment of full salary is only possible because of the financial ingenuity of the Governor. Contrary to his view, Oyetola’s cabinet members were nominated largely by the state APC structure; this on its own is commendable. Out of the 35 cabinet members, the governor cant boost of 10 nominees and I can attest to the fact that there is collaboration, synergy and team spirit as well as cordial relationship among cabinet members. You claimed old politicians were neglected but sizable number of the present cabinet members are the so called old guard politicians. And if I may ask, who are the old guard politicians more than a Rufus Oyegbile, an House of Representative member in 1991, former council chairman and a party chairman or a Jare Adebisi, who was a state party executive of over 20 years ago or an Hon. Folorunso Bamisayemi who was LG council chairman over 20 years ago ? Would you refer to a Rasak Adeosun that has been Organising Secretary of the party before he became a cabinet member as a young politician? No, they are the old guard politicians; a Nathaniel Agunbiade, Taju Lawal, Segun Olanibi, Niran Ibitoye and lots more are all old guard politicians who are members of Oyetola’s cabinet. I that might not meet the author criteria of old guard politician became a card carrying member of AD in 2003.
Must all former commissioners be returned before you agree that old guard politicians are being taken care of ? Must we not commend Governor Oyetola for injecting young minds into his cabinet? It is important that I remind the author that 70 per cent of cabinet members directly or indirectly served in Aregbesola’s administration. What more can be called continuity than this? The recently released rent tribunal list is largely populated by old guard politicians .
You said Iyalojas are no longer dancing; this is laughable, each governor has his own style, Oyetola cannot be Aregbesola, what is essential is how well the needs of market women are met. Atakumosa market in Ilesa is the biggest market in Osun yet in a terrible state; it has no functional toilet facility and several portion of the market had been abandoned over the years while efforts to rebuild the market in time past meet brick walls.
The author once advised the Governor to always gauge the mood of people in order to come up with what they want; he has gauged the mood of Ilesa people and they told him they want him to rebuild the market urgently . And I can authoritatively tell you as the Commissioner for Works that I have the full mandate of the Governor to commence the rebuilding of Atakumosa market in Ilesa, I can also tell you that funds have been warehoused for the project; we are just waiting for some legal issues to be resolved before works starts.
The Government is poised to improve the commerce of the people, he has repackaged a lot of schemes for market women and market rebuilding is not limited to Ilesa but to cut across the state. I want to remind the author that the Oyetola administration is a participatory government; he said it clearly that he would ensure he meets the critical needs of the people as their needs will determine the direction of his government.
Recently, we awarded five major road projects across the state which were picked from the Citizen’s Need Assessment report by DFID and the thank you tour report of peoples’ needs. It includes the construction of Alekuwodo road network which is the heart of Ward (4) four in Osogbo local government; ward four (4) and five (5) are the two biggest wards in the entire state, yet the state of the road is disgraceful but today, the road network is being fixed. Other roads awarded are Ede (Oke Gada) – Ara- Ejigbo township , Igbajo-Ada road, Ede – Awo junction, Moro-Ipetumodu- Yakoyo – Akinlalu in Ife North, in Ilesa; roundabout-Isare- Sabo- Akure Expressway. All these projects are costing the state a whooping sum of N5.2bn, work has commenced, it will interest you to know that in the history of Ife North, no government; be it federal or state has embarked on any single project that is worth over 800m, the road picked in Ife North is awarded for close to a billion naira, this is the largest project in the history of Ife North and this is courtesy of Governor Oyetola. If democracy is the government of the people, by the people and for the people, the people must determine what they want the government to do.
Let me also tell you that we are fixing over 100 roads under the 5km per local government scheme, we will start awarding these roads any moment from now. I am indeed shocked that Mr Komolafe is claiming that nothing significant has happened; has he not driven round Osogbo at night? Is the light up project not beautiful ? We have concluded arrangements to deploy hybrid street lights to about 15 other towns after the success in Osogbo, the light up Osun is commendable.
The author may wish to note that our synergy with the Federal Ministry of Works has yielded positive results; the biggest project in the history of Osun state has been awarded by the Federal Government, that is the reconstruction of Ilesa-Ife-Ibadan Expressway which is costing N79bn, our collaborative efforts with the Federal Government has also brought back the contractor handling Osogbo-Ilobu-Oko road, we are fixing Osogbo-Iwo via a collaborative effort with the Federal Government while a bad portion of the Ilesa-Osogbo Expressway has been fixed. The dualisation of Mayfair- Lagere-Fajuyi-Ilesa Expressway by the Federal Government has commenced , the Governor played a significant role alongside some stakeholders. Ile Oluji-Ipetu Ijesa is being rehabilitated by FERMA; should we talk about our efforts in the mining sector? Governor Oyetola administration disbursed N3bn to the contractor handling three major projects we inherited from the last administration; Osogbo-Ila Odo road, the contractor is back because we remobilised him to a turn of N1bn, Gbongan to Akoda, the contractor is also working because he has been remobilised to a tune of N1bn, the popular ona baba ona (circular roundabout), the contractor handling the job is fully back to site. Today, a portion of Ilesa Garage to Oke Baale has been fully asphalted courtesy of the
Oyetola administration .Do you want to tell me these roads are still the way they were when Oyetola came in on November 27, 2018? No, the author also mentioned the issue of the state boys, truth be told, they are our own. However, Oyetola’s idea of state boys is an improvement on the last administration’s style of managing them; to get them gainfully empowered and not mere political thugs, they have families; we must support them to also build a sustainable future for themselves, on a personal note, I have empowered nothing less than 10 state boys across the state. The Government has started implementing a robust empowerment scheme for them, that is his vision, we are poised to continue to build on Aregbesola’s legacy. You want prayer warriors to perpetually come round to pray, sir, if prayer alone is the solution to our problem as a nation, Nigeria with its number of churches and mosques will be the best nation in the world today. We believe so much in prayer but faith without work is dead, we will not encourage prayer jobbers but will continue to promote peace and coexistence amongst all religions.
It is unfortunate that the article is centred on patronage for politicians alone and not about the people. We promised good governance and will continue to strive to give the people of Osun the best. While some clowns are shouting Ambode treatment, Governor Oyetola is not focused on second term but to provide the best available governance for the people. It is only God that enthrones and no man can stop him if God wants him to have a second term. I am certain that with the pace of development under Oyetola, he will be an outstanding governor in the history of Osun.
What we need is to preach peace and synergy within the party and show the harmonious relationship between Governor Oyetola and his predecessor which has helped us as a state especially in curbing fire menace. You may not know that the Federal Government gave equipment to the fire service through the aid of the Minister of Interior, who is the former governor of the state and how leader . We welcome constructive criticism but not write-ups aimed at instigating crisis within the political circle, we are one big family; Governor Oyetola invested so much in projects he inherited from the last administration because the bedrock of his campaign was continuity, we shall not be distracted but forge ahead for good governance as I affirm that no unforeseen storm in Osun
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