By Bisi Olominu
Alhaji Adegboyega Oyetola has been in government with the former Governor of Osun State, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola for eight years. He was the Chief-of-Staff to the governor and operated behind the scene in Osun State politics for several years. Now, quite precipitously, he is the new governor of the state.
The 64-year-old All Progressives Congress (APC) governor spent the better part of his political foray getting others elected, then helping them implement their policies by applying his vast experience as a long time accounting and insurance executive in the private sector.
But Mr Oyetola has never stood for election until earlier this year when the former governor, Rauf Aregbesola, whom he served throughout his eight-year- two-term tenure, tapped him out of a long list of political protégés as his final anointed successor.
On Tuesday, November 27,2018 Oyetola was sworn in as the 5th executive governor of the state at the Osogbo Township Stadium in an event witnessed by a large crowd of the All Progressives Congress chieftains, Governors, Senators, traditional rulers, House of Assembly members, House of Representatives members, clergymen, party men and women, and well wishers from all walks of live.
As early as 8 in the morning, the atmosphere was enveloped with joy as people trooped in to catch a glimpse of who is who in politics under the banner of APC. The politicians exchanged banters, women danced to the beat of King of Fuji Music, Alhaji Ayinde Marshal. It was a boisterous atmosphere, a dawn of a new day and the first time that a party, All Progressives Congress will win an election in Osun State back to back.
It was not all politicians affairs alone, the Iyaloja and Babaloja cum entertainers were on hand to add glamour to the inauguration. The security personnel had hectic time controlling the crowd as many of them could not gain access to the stadium. Many were stranded outside and the sellers of goods and foods had a field day.
Many came with ‘aso ebi’ of different kinds, some had ‘Ileri Oluwa’, the appellation of Governor Oyetola embossed on the clothes. The calisthenic displayed by the primary and secondary school students of Osun State was a wonder to watch. The exchange of baton in the state would be a great discourse for long.
In his inaugural speech, Governor Adegboyega Oyetola adduced his triumph at the recently governorship election to Almighty God.
” As we all stand today to celebrate a new beginning; fully conscious that the divine instrument, the special purpose vehicle for bringing about “Ileri Oluwa”, (the will of Almighty God), are the votes of the good people of this state, freely and fairly cast in a closely fought election.”
” Let me affirm before you fellow citizens witnessing this historic moment that the mandate to govern this state will be held in close trust by me. This trust will not be abused. Today, I state clearly that this is our commitment.”
Oyetola promised to build on the progress already made by the former Governor, Rauf Aregbesola in the state.
” We shall do so farm by farm, industry by industry, village by village, school by school, person by person, until everyone in this state feels the beneficial influence of progressive good governance in the most important aspects of their lives.
” We rest not and quit not. We forge ahead because progress is all we know. Neither defeat nor retreat is for us. We shall learn from the past, yet we shall never be stuck in the past, we shall forge ahead to sustain the hope and greatest good of the greatest number of our people.
“Let me, at this juncture, point out what will become the defining hallmark of our intervention in governance, in the next four years, namely; a social partnership between government and the people based on the execution of a social contract. We will combine the sagacity of Obafemi Awolowo, the vision of Bola Ige, the wisdom of Bisi Akande, the dexterity of Bola Tinubu and the innovative capacity of Rauf Aregbesola to make our state even greater.
“We will ensure that workers’ salaries are paid promptly bearing in mind the financial inflow of the state. We shall resolutely defend, extend and prioritise the welfare of workers and pensioners.
“To reposition the economy of our great state, we shall organise the Osun Economic Summit within the first quarter of our first year in office. The multi-stage, multi- stakeholder summit will dissect and recommend strategies which will drive meaningful youth employment, enhance food security, agricultural development, activate mining prospects and boost tourism potentials of this state. We will showcase Osun as a strategic location for industrialisation.
“We are convinced that the peaceful atmosphere, a welcoming people, low crime rate, communal peace and the relative stability of electricity supply (particularly in the capital city) will attract local and foreign investors.
“We will develop the free trade zone while strengthening Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) as a way to enhance their productive capacity to generate jobs and create wealth. To further boost our local economy and increase the revenue base, we shall make Osun a cultural destination and a tourism enterprise zone in the Southwest.
” We shall improve on the Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the state in ways that do not bring additional burden to the people. We will make health and education more accessible. Employment opportunities will be created through industrialization and expansion of agricultural activities through appropriate incentives.
“To boost agriculture and food security. Our administration will consolidate on the agricultural land expansion programme (the Land Bank), with additional target of 20,000 hectares to the Land Bank. We will establish nine (9) new farm settlements (one each per federal constituency) while we push forward on our promise to establish agro-industrial parks and produce markets.
Oyetola in his speech tagged ‘A Hope Renewed’ promised to promote equitable and value-based development education that emphasizes competence and character as reflected in the principle and philosophy of ‘Omoluabi’.
The governor again promised to run a people friendly government which focuses on growth, creation of jobs, social protection, inclusive governance and sustainable upgrade in the standard of living of the people of Osun State.
“Today is a new day. It is a day of hope. Let’s rise to sing a song of hope. Hope of a better tomorrow for our teeming youth and all classes of diverse population. Let’s sing for hope, knowing that our land shall yield countless increase. We are prepared. We are ready. We are set. Together, let us take on the mountain. Let’s build enduring legacies that our children and the generations yet to come can be proud of”.
The President of Nigeria, Mohammadu Buhari represented by the Secretary to the Federal Government, (SGF), Boss Mustapha commended the people of Osun State for voting for the All Progressives Congress in the last election, promising that they would not regret their actions.
He urged the new administration to build on the legacies of the immediate administration, stressing that in all its dealings, the welfare of the people should be a symbolic priority.
Buhari said further that APC government will continue to fight for them by reducing the level of corruption and other vices that have plagued the development of the country.
He stated that APC government had in the last eight years brought development to Osun State, promising that the incoming government will continue the good works embarked upon by Aregbesola’s government.
Urging the people of the state to continue to support APC government, President Buhari promised more developmental projects in the state.
The National Leader of APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu in his goodwill message thanked the people of Osun State for voting for APC government, noting that the successive handing of baton to another government of APC was an attestation that Osun people love progressivism.
He called on them to continue to queue behind the party for more developmental projects. The National Chairman of APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu also commended the past governor, Rauf Aregbesola for doing a great job in the state.
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