Nigeria News

Ekiti 2014: The Apotheosis of Kayode Fayemi

Gov Kayode FayemiPolitics has started in earnest in Ekiti State as the 2014 governorship election approaches. As usual the allegations and counter allegations have started flying about with political gladiators at the forefront of the plan to nail their political opponents and blackmail them in the face of the electorate who will determine their fate in the election. As with Ekiti State elections, allegation of planned use of thugs and political assassination has not taken the back seat. This was further fuelled by killings in the state, particularly the recent killing of a member of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Foluso Ogundare in Emure.
 
The incumbent governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi who is the leading candidate in the election no doubt has had his bag full of allegations aimed at blackmailing him and making him ineligible for the election.
 
Essentially, there have been attempts to link him to the killings.
The latest antics of members of the opposition to dent the image of the governor may have stemmed from the fact that Fayemi has lived up to the expectation of the people. But unknown to political foes of the governor, he has consistently warned members of his party against employing violence in settling scores. Even during his struggle to reclaim his mandate, he had warned that nobody should kill for his sake. His usual appeal to his supporters was that he was not prepared to spill the blood of anyone to get to office.
 
Even now in office, at every meeting with his aides, he warned them against any aggression on members of the opposition for any reason, saying rather than taking laws into their hands after provocation from the opposition, they should take their case to law enforcement agents.
As a man who loves his people irrespective of their political leanings, he has treated all Ekiti people equally without discriminating against members of the opposition in the implementation of his programmes. It is on record that members of the opposition benefited more from his welfare programmes including Social Security for the Elderly and the Youth Volunteer Corps. This earned him protest from members of his party who believed that the implementation of these programmes should be tilted in favour of them.
 
At the last meeting he held with his special assistants in his countryhome in Isan recently, he read a riot act to them that anyone caught formenting trouble would have himself to blame as he was not ready to make his second term bid a do-or-die affair. He stressed that he had performed to the expectation of Ekiti people, which should earn him a second term, adding that he would not want anyone around him to be identified with violence. Therefore any attempt to link the governor or his aides with the Emure violence would amount to an exercise in futility as everyone around the governor knows that he is not a violent man and that he abhorred violence in all ramifications.
 
Apparently aware of the fact that the non-violent nature of the governor informed the latest attempt at blackmailing some of his aides. However this would not work as the aides have equally come into the open to wash their hands off the crisis.
Though the governor has refrain from joining issues with anyone on the various allegations aimed at denting his image, one thing is obvious that he remains a front runner in the race and the man to beat. This stemmed from his excellent performance and the prudent manner he has managed the resources of the state, which resulted in the excellent performance he has posted in the last three years.
 
To further demonstrate his preference for peaceful coexistence of the people irrespective of their political leanings, the governor at the recent “Meet the People”  our said in Osi that, “We the people of Ekiti are one. We are not people of 20 tongues; there is unity in diversity…there is no amount of crisis that should result in killing ourselves.
Please let us embrace peace”.
 
Already, notable indigenes of the state have been coming out to identify with the governor after series of adoption by his party members at different foras. Right from last year December when a former governor of the state, Otunba Niyi Adebayo, led leaders of the party to appeal to the governor to seek a second term in office based on his performance, different professional groups have expressed their support for the second term bid of the governor.
Not left out in the open identification with the second term bid of the governor were artisans including different trade groups who expressed their satisfaction with Fayemi performance so far.
Moved by the achievements recorded in the various sectors of the economy, a foremost lawyer and proprietor of Afe Babalola University, Aare Afe Babalola, at a mega rally in Ado-Ekiti recently identified with the governor in the open, saying he would readily identify with anyone who has delivered on the infrastructural development of the state. He pointed out that the achievements of the governor were obvious and spread throughout the state.
Ewi of Ado-Ekiti, Oba Rufus Adejugbe, also hailed the governor for his pragmatic approach to governance, which has led to the many achievements posted by him, particularly in the area of urban renewal, which has moved the state capital from a mere council headquarters to a more befitting state capital which an average Ekiti man is proud of.
 
Not left out in the call on Ekiti people to support the governor’s second term bid, foremost industrialist and the richest man in Africa, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, said Fayemi had performed to the expectation of the people. He urged the people to support the governor for a second term to enable him continue with his good works.
Dangote also expressed his desire to set up industries in the state as a demonstration of his support for the Fayemi administration.
 
Also speaking in the same vein, the immediate-past chairman of the state Council of Obas, Owaooyeof Okemesi, Oba Gbadebo Adedeji declared that though he is not a politician and has not been employed to blow the trumpet of the governor, he would identify in the open with the lofty achievements of the governor in the area of physical infrastructure. He pointed out that only the enemy of the state would oppose the second term bid of the governor.
 
He argued that Fayemi had started on a good note and should be allowed to take the state to a glorious height pointing out that the decision of the governor to complete all hitherto abandoned projects was aimed at maximising the resources of the state for the good of her people.
Oba Adedeji would readily point at the massive road reconstruction and rehabilitation across the state. For instance, the Fayemi administration in the last three years has rehabilitated a total of 728.365km of both federal and state roads at a cost of N8billion. Besides, a total of 81.2km of roads across the 16 council areas have been completed under the 5km road per council area. This is in addition to the initiated urban renewal programme already implemented in Ado-Ekiti and which is now being extended to Ijero, Ikole and Ikere. The urban renewal programme has led to the installation of street lights in Ado with the attendant aesthetic value to the beatification of the state capital at night. Also include in the programme is the walk ways for residents.
 
Some of these roads which have been commissioned by the governor include Dualisation of Old garage-Ojumose; Dualisation of Atikankan-Nitel Baptist; Fajuyi- Teaching Hospital; Ojumose –Basiri/Police Hqrs; Ijigbo – Baptists College; Ado – Ilawe; Ado – Afao; Ilawe – Igbaraodo – Ibuji; Ikogosi – Ipole iloro – Efon; Ijan – Ise; Ikole- Ijesa Isu – Iluomoba; Ijero- Ipoti- Ayetoro; Ado- Ikere; Ikere – Igbaraodo; Ilupeju –Igbemo-Ijan; Oye-Ikun-Otun; Igede-Awo-Ido; Iropora-Epe-Araromi-Ijero; and Ayetoro-Ewu-Iye to mention a few.
 
Apparently happy with the number of good roads delivered by his administration, the governor declared recently at the celebration of his 3rd year anniversary that  “this well defined initiative has so far engendered accelerated growth in the state socio-economic activities, reduce travel time, impacted positively on commuters with the penchant to expand the life span of vehicles, strengthened the state’s competiveness and attractiveness to both domestic and foreign investors thereby improving Ekiti Doing Business ranking and citizens propensity to access economic opportunities.”
 
In the area water supply, the governor has increased water supply in the state from 25 percent to 52 percent while it has reactivated all mini dams in the state. Also, the Fayemi administration has commissioned five mini-water treatment plants while water pipes laying to replace dilapidated ones is ongoing. This is in addition to the construction of 167 modern fetching points across the 16 council areas.
 
The administration has provided fire fighting trucks and equipment to the state fire service while operational vehicles have been provided to the state command of the Nigeria Police Force through the Swift Response outfit
 
The administration has completed the rehabilitation of Oluyemi Kayode stadium and the stadium for now ranked among the best in the country.
The state new mega pavilion is nearing completion with a new civic centre named in memory of the late deputy governor, Mrs. Funmi Olayinka.  In the area of agricultural development, the governor has recorded monumental achievement with the establishment of the Youth Commercial Agriculture Development {YCAD}. The programme seeks to achieve the twin of objective of creating employment for youths and increase food production.
About 250 youths are currently participating in the programme and are into cultivation of different agricultural products to earn a living.
 
At present, the state is reported to have achieved the largest productivity {yield/Ha} and cultivation in Nigeria. Ekiti yield at 15T/Ha is above the national average of 12T/Ha.
Some of the recorded achievements in the agriculture sector include provision of micro credit worth N150mill to farmers, distribution of 143,781bags of fertilizers to farmers, establishment of grazing reserves in Irele community, distribution of 150,000 cocoa seedlings and 60,000 oil palm seedlings to farmers, carried out ground breaking of Iyemero irrigation project, cultivated under YCAD-Rice Expansion programme over 1,000Ha last yearand 850Ha this year and with a plan for 3,000Ha dry season rice production, commenced the establishment of College of technical and Commercial Agriculture among many other achievements.
 
In the area of education and capital development, the governor in the last three years, distributed 30,000 units of laptops to students of public secondary schools and another 18,000 to teachers in public schools, renovated 100 dilapidated secondary school buildings across the state, employed 4,643 graduates under the youth Volunteer Scheme, facilitated the acquisition of critical skills by 200 youths at Oodua Skills Acquisition Centre, distributed 20,000 sets of lockers and chairs to public schools across the state, trained 4,160 teachers under the Universal Basic education Board, procured and distributed diverse science equipment to 179 public schools, restructured the technical colleges for quality technical manpower development and trained 4,000 teachers in e-learning techniques.
 
It also distributed school bags to secondary school students, paid WAEC and NECO fees for students in public schools, procured and distributed textbooks in core science subjects to secondary school students, constructed and renovated 1,533 classrooms within the last three years and delivered 11,700 pupils desks, established remedial colleges in the 16 council areas, awarded bursary to all Ekiti indigenes in tertiary institutions, engender significant improvement in the aggregate examination performance of students in public examinations among others.
Following the huge investment in the education sector, it is noteworthy that students of the state origin recorded 66 percent credit pass in the 2013 WAEC result compared 23 percent of the previous year.
 
The Fayemi administration has elevated the health sector in the last three years. It not only treated ovedr 300,000 indigenes free under its Free Health Mission, it has paid over N93million as medical bills of indigent indigenes, capitalized nine new facilities through unified drug revolving fund scheme and supplied N40million worth of drugs to the centre, implement new salary structure for health workers, renovation of 18 general hospitals and the construction of three mother and child hospitals in the state, established Funmi Olayinka Centre for Cancer Diagnosis, upgraded, renovated and extended six secondary health facilities across the state.
It also engendered reduction of infant mortality rate to 98 per 1000.
This is the currently lowest in Nigeria and below the national average. The fayemi administration through its health programme has achieved 55 years average life expectancy of citizens which is over and above the national average of 50 years.
 
One area the governor has recorded excellent performance is in the tourism sector where the administration undertakes the renewal of Ikogosi Warm Spring’s Tourist Centre. The hitherto neglected warm spring has become a beehive of activities with tourists from far and near trooping to have a feel of the work of nature.
 
Already, the phase one development plan has been completed with standard, executive suites and VIP villas accommodation facilities, multi-purpose conference hall, 6-seat meeting and functions rooms, shopping mall/variety buildings/fitness and business centre, amphitheatre, warm water adult swimming pool, children’s pool and water features, restaurant/bar among many facilities.
No doubt Fayemi has raise the bar of governance in the state and apparently happy with giant strides of the state government, the Zik Award for good governance was bestowed on the governor recently.
 

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