In Oyo State “it’s arrested development “ - by Lanre Olayinka
Since the advent of the fourth republic in May 1999, which ushered in democratically elected government in the states of Nigeria, some few states have been lucky to have governors who care more about leaving legacy than lining up their pockets and such governors did their best to improve on the comatose infrastructure inherited from the past military regime ,they improved every sector of life namely education, health, agriculture, roads, creating enabling environment for businesses to thrive and laid or are laying foundation for successive government and the generation yet unborn. Amongst these visionary governors are Chief Bisi Akande of Osun state, Donald Duke of Cross River state,Asiwaju Tinubu of Lagos State,Danjuma Goje of Gombe state, Ikedim Ohakim of Imo state, Babangida Aliyu of Niger state, Babatunde Raji Fasola of Lagos state (the wonder kid).
But Oyo state has not been so lucky to have a visionary and selfless governor since the advent of democracy in May 1999, hence development has been arrested in the once famous pacesetter state, not a single new major road or beautification has been added to the state capital since 1999,and the road , infrastructures & buildings etc that was inherited from the previous administrations are not well maintained, to say the roads and monumental buildings built during the good days of Awolowo and Chief Bola Ige are in comatose is to be economical with words, from the great Agbowo shopping complex, to Olubadan stadium, to Trans hotel, Trans wonderland, Agodi gardens, Adamasingba stadium, Gbagi International market all this infrastructures are in a sorry state of disrepair. If an administration cannot maintain inherited infrastructures,how would it be able to think of building a new one. If there has been nothing new in Ibadan the state capital I can imagine how worse off the other major towns like Ogbomosho,Oyo,Saki,Okeho etc would have fared. For someone who has not visited Oyo state in the past 10 years,you would not notice anything new, but a degradation of even the existing infrastructures. No wonder an advise on the professional travel guide described Ibadan woefully and even advised travellers not to visit the city except they have to, what a shame for the city once noted for setting the pace in development from the first University to the first TV station, to the first Stadium. Anyone in doubt should visit (www.professionaltravelguide.com/Destinations/Ibadan-Nigeria/)
Gov Lam Adesina's administration was ushered in, in May 1999 with high hopes from the citizenry to turn around the fortunes of the state ,but alas he could not make any meaningful impact before he was swept away by the Obasanjo's capture southwest by force program. As much as some of Lam Adesina's excuse of clearing the rot left by the military and paucity of funds is tenable, his leanings towards communism closed his eyes towards encouraging Public Private Partnership to tackle the deficiency in infrastructure and to resuscitate the moribund state enterprises which would have had injection of private funds, create more jobs and boost the economy of the state, thus leading to more internally generated revenue in form of taxes from this companies.
If Lam Adesina could be forgiven because of his welfarism/communism background , the same could not be said for Gov Rasheed Ladoja, who was a beneficiary of the “capture southwest by force” program of General Obasanjo. The thought that Sen Ladoja was coming from a private sector background and harmed with a supposed credible c.v gave everybody the assumption that he would return the state to eldorado and improve the economic well being of the citizenry.But rather than assemble a formidable team, Sen Ladoja who is headstrong and thinks he has a monopoly of knowledge and wisdom arranged a team full of his girlfriends and domestic assistants, appointing them as SSG and commissioners, the result of which was garbage in garbage out. Nothing concrete can be identified with the administration of Sen Ladoja as his mark in improving the infrastructures in Oyo state,other than his acclaimed dualisation of the Mokola to Ojoo road,which was actually an addition of an extra lane to the already existing road, and also the Iwo road to Olodo dualisation, which is also an addition of extra lane, that road of less than 15km is still ongoing till now since 2005 when it was awarded. Sen Ladoja's only excuse was that his Godfather/Facilitator who assisted in rigging/electing (depending on which one you chose to believe) him into power,was inhibiting him from concentrating on delivering the dividends of democracy, but I beg to differ as Sen Ladoja who refused the list of commissioners and appointees from Chief Adedibu ended up appointing worse ones or at best in the same categories as the Adedibu list. Sen Ladoja cannot claim to be distracted from doing his job more than Chris Ngige of Anambra,who within the two years of holding onto an illegal mandate and a consistent war from Chris Uba, who has the presidential backing of Obasanjo was still able to improve the infrastructures in Anambra state,against all odds of daily war and distraction from the presidency backed Chris Uba. I believe Sen Ladoja is just one of the power seekers of Nigeria,who do not have any plan before seeking for elective offices only to be at loss as to what to do when they eventually get the power by hook or crook.
If Sen Ladoja can still be pardoned because of the war of attrition waged by Chief Adedibu which led to his impeachment and reinstatement or at best scored 40% ,the greatest culprit in the arrested development saga is the incumbent Governor of Oyo state Adebayo Alao Akala, who did not have any plan before stealing the mandate with the active connivance of the late Adedibu , Iwu and Obasanjo .The good people of Oyo state saw this emptiness in Gov Alao Akala ,prior to the election and they did not vote for him.But the super impostor Iwu/Obasanjo thought otherwise and foisted him on the people of Oyo state through manipulation of the election and daylight rigging.Gov Alao Akala has spent two years as governor of Oyo state and he his still at loss as to what to do, neither does he have a master plan or program which his administration can be held accountable to.Gov Alao Akala 's administration and the 33 local chairmen (I call them share-men)have collected a whooping 168,443,607,302.48 billion naira as allocation from the federation account(source :www.fmf.gov.ng) since he was sworn in 29th of May 2007, which is more than what the administration of Lam Adesina/Sen Ladoja collected for the eight years , and yet there is nothing on ground to justify this huge income which does not include the Internally Generated Reserve estimated to be about 24billion naira. All the Alao Akala administration has been doing is junketing all over the globe at the expense of the Oyo state citizens and throwing lavish birthday,wedding,remembrance and chieftaincy title parties all at the expense of the Oyo state citizens. Gov Alao Akala's administration is not accountable to the citizenry ,neither is it trusted by the poor citizens of Oyo state who voted but their votes was not counted as the through choice of the people was violated.I guess the discerning citizens of Oyo state have already noticed the incompetence and lack of capacity of Alao Akala during the 11 month interregnum reign of Alao-Akala when his boss was illegally impeached and looting was the order of the day.
For there to be peace and development in Oyo state , I urge all well meaning indigenes of Oyo state to borrow a leaf from the just concluded election in Ekiti state where the strong will of voters was displayed, even though the powers that be in Iwu and the Presidency truncated the wish of the people, (I am sure the Judiciary would reinstate the wish of the majority at the tribunal),but it has shown that with the 2011 elections,(it would no more be rigging as usual) it would be more difficult to impose or rig elections and the perpetrators of rigging would be having more forces to contend with,be it the police or inec.As much as 2011 is a few years away, the need for credible candidate to start bracing up to challenge the incumbent government of Alao Akala ,who even claims to be doing his best according to his ability,but whose best is not good enough in this modern day if we are to catch up with other neighbouring states in the southwest especially Lagos state,which Governor Fasola(wonder kid) has turned into a model and now rightly deserve the acronym of the centre of excellence and the pacesetter state. The time to deliver Oyo state is now and the time to release the wrongfully arrested and incarcerated development is NOW .So we can claim back the status of the Pacesetter. Ajisebi oyo lari ,Oyo o se bi baba enikankan . Oyo o ni baje o.
Originating at www.huhuonline.com