I heartily rejoice with you, Governor Ademola Adeleke on your inauguration as the sixth Executive Governor of Osun State on Sunday, November 27, 2022. I have followed keenly your political trajectory from the time you contested and won the election into the Osun West Senatorial district bye-election after the demise of your elder brother and first Executive Governor of Osun State, Senator Isiaka Adeleke. Your case can be likened to the Yoruba adage that says, “The head that will wear a crown may wear cap for 40 years but will eventually be crowned a king.” Your narrow loss of the 2018 governorship seat to your immediate predecessor in office, Gboyega Oyetola, has now been compensated for in 2022.
For the benefit of all and sundry, I am genealogically from Osun State though born and bred in the ancient town of Ibadan. My father is from Ile-Ogbo, the headquarters of Ayedire Local Government, and my mum is from Ikire, the head community in Irewole Local Government. Though residing in Abuja at present, I have my ears to the ground and periodically come to Osun State on official and unofficial visits. I was in the state to observe the 2018 governorship election and was also there to build capacity of women group to demand the implementation of your campaign promises in October 2022. I came to the state from Ado Ekiti where a similar exercise was carried out under the auspice of the Nigeria Women Trust Fund and as I travelled through Ilesa to Osogbo, Ede, Ode Omu, Gbongan, Ikire down to Ibadan, I was able to familiarise myself with the state of infrastructure in the state.
Sir, I have had the opportunity of reviewing your five-point agenda and have had the privilege of granting two media interviews on Family Love 99.9 FM and TV 360 to appraise some of your official pronouncements, especially the six executive orders issued last week Monday which have generated a lot of furore within and outside the state. I am not a politician and have no partisan interest of any sort. This open letter is written as a concerned Osun State indigene who wants the best for his home state.
I appreciate your sense of commitment to duty when in paragraph 9 of your inauguration address you said, “Our administration will demonstrate a high sense of urgency, transparency, justice and innovation to tackle and solve the problems of poverty, illiteracy, disease, and poor infrastructure.” Your five-point agenda to wit: Welfare of workers and pensioners; boosting the state’s economy home-grown infrastructure policy; people-focused policy on education, affordable health care, security and social welfare; and agro-based Industrialisation for wealth and job creation are all laudable. However, you are probably aware of the famous quote by Mario Cuomo, the 52nd Governor of New York State in the United States, who said, “Politicians campaign in poetry, but they govern in prose.” I believe you’re aware of the parlous state of financial resources available to Osun State before you threw your hat into the ring to contest for the governorship seat of our dear state in 2018 and 2022. Please, don’t come and give us mega excuses on why things cannot be done as promised during your campaigns.
I am happy with your commitment to prioritise in-service training and the welfare of teachers, enhancement of the school environment, entrenchment of discipline in the school system as well as involvement of the Parents-Teachers Association in our school administration system in order to revamp the inglorious state of public education in the state. Your plan to revive tourism through public-private-partnership is a welcome development but you must ensure watertight security of the state before tourists will have the confidence to come around to view our cultural heritage and tourist sites such as Osun Osogbo Groove, Erin Ijesa Waterfall, Olojo Festival and Ife Museum to mention a few.
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Sir, in paragraph 22 of your inauguration speech, you promised as follows, “Women and youths are important segments in our development programme. I had earlier set up a Youth Advisory Council which has produced an impressive blueprint for youth development in the state. I plan to ensure the speedy implementation of their recommendations. More importantly, let me assure our women that our administration will be gender-sensitive in all appointments.” This assertion and commitment to promote digital literacy, technological innovations and create opportunities for our teeming youths in the ICT sector are praiseworthy.
However, your gender sensitivity should not be in terms of appointments alone. It should equally reflect in your policies, programmes, budget and laws. For your information sir, the Nigeria Women Trust Fund has already trained trackers who will be monitoring and documenting the implementation of your five-point agenda as they impact women and girls in Osun State. Inclusive governance, as you have promised, is the way to go.
You’re very much on point when in paragraph 33 of your inauguration speech, you said, “We will embark on a security sector reform that will target crime prevention, detection, neighbourhood policing and better synergy among security agencies. The Amotekun Corps will be strengthened while our administration will ensure operational linkage between local hunters and the Amotekun Corps. A ‘Know Your Neighbour’ security initiative will be implemented…..” This is very urgent and important. Little can be done in terms of governance without security. The high incidence of kidnapping, banditry and all forms of criminality ravaging this country will make good governance impossible; hence it’s important for the security agencies to have vertical and horizontal collaboration. I’m glad that you have promised to strengthen the Amotekun Corps; there is also the need to strengthen cooperation with federal security agencies such as the Nigeria Police Force, Department of State Services and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps not forgetting the Nigerian Armed Forces deployed to the state by the Federal Government.
I urge you not to be on a vendetta mission against your perceived political opponents. Be focused on good governance, there’s a lot to do to bring Osun State out of its economic doldrums and governance quagmire. You must have zero tolerance for corruption and ensure you block all revenue leakages in the state. You need to diversify the state economy in order to earn more to run the state effectively and efficiently. I urge you to build on the worthy legacies of your predecessors in office irrespective of party affiliations. Don’t encourage waste by abandoning some of the laudable ongoing projects of your predecessors in office. Pay workers and pensioners their due entitlements as and when due and work in sync with other arms of government in the state. Good luck sir!
Twitter: @jideojong ,
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