Painstaking assessments of the happenings within the corridor of power in Osun state are disheartening and disturbing: outcome is capable of raising the public curiosity as to who is really in-charge of the affairs of the state.
The quest to establish whether or not the affairs of the state are being run on autopilot has become a subject of agitation at the hearts of those that care to know the implications of such on governance in the state.
The lingering crisis within the power brokers and political gladiators jostling for one political appointment or the other has revealed where the power to hire and fire lies within the ruling class.
To this end, the need to ask the pertinent question as to who is really in-charge of administering the affair of the state becomes unassailable.
There is a clear indication that the incumbent governor, who by virtue of the principles of Presidential System of Government is bestowed with the “Executive Power” is in no doubt, consciously and unconsciously, he appears to be running a Parliamentary System where he is administering the state affairs as ceremonial entity, while the power-that-be lies somewhere else.
The salient questions agitating the minds of the discerning citizens on who dictates the tune, and from whom the authority lies in the running of the day-to-day affairs of the state in the last one year remained rhetorical.
It has been reported on different occasions that until one has a nod of an individual, who in the eye of the law holds no officially-pronounced political office but acts as de facto governor, nothing scales through in government, and that no policy of government could be implemented without passing the table of the aristocrat.
Upon assumption of office in November, 2022, the coast became clearer to the electorate who were hitherto hoodwinked and blindfolded into believing in the unrealistic political rhetorics that heralded the incumbent government.
Glaringly coming to wage a personal vendetta, the incumbent Governor came up with obnoxious Executive Orders to clampdown on perceived opposition, destroy the enduring legacies of his predecessors and promoting nepotistic tendencies in the corridor of power on the altar of vengeance.
The despicable voyage led to the sudden suspension of some royal fathers; demotion of top civil servants most especially those appointed by the immediate past government into the position of Permanent Secretary as well as sacking of thousands of employees of the state.
Many standing committees constituted by the immediate past administration on various sectors to oversee the pros and cons for the overall development of the state were aggressively dissolved for political reasons. Both statutory and non-statutory boards were dissolved to pave way for the replacement and installation of stooges of the political gladiators in the state.
As time goes by, it became obvious that the ill-thought decisions taken by the government were conceived to score cheap political points, and subject the main opposition party to ridicule, the persistence of which had become the subject of interrogation among the citizens particularly the elites who queried the rationale behind the parochial tendency that had pervaded the system.
Feelers within the ruling class revealed the grouses that many of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)’s loyalists held against the system, as the aggrieved were annoyed over the palpable decentralized form of authorities which they considered as a bane to the growth and development of the state.
It was revealed at different quarters that unless the two de facto governor in the person of the elder brother and sister to the Governor give a nod to any official business of government, such would become a fantasy as it would not see the light of the day let alone being considered for implementation.
The two de facto governors are not only as powerful as governor but they are the Alpha and Omega of whatever happens in government as they determine who takes what and what to be acted on by the ‘ceremonial governor’.
The persistent anomaly that is not only strange to the system but alien to the democratic tenets had successfully reared its ugly head and become a cankerworm being nurtured by the system itself for survival.
The seat of power and office of the executive governor had not only been hijacked, but been taken over by the aristocrats leaving the state affairs at the whims and caprices of the governor’s siblings who myopically determine the fate of the over four million citizens of the state.
The bizzare scenario goes beyond the finality on whatever the decision taken by the two de facto governor, but they are the ones managing the public and private life of the number one citizen of the state to the extent that the state government house and governor’s residence had been practically jettisoned by the governor since he assumed office.
Aside the futile claims that the state government house was under renovation, it is crystal clear that even after the completion of the said official quarters, the governor has not for once slept in his official residence since he was sworn in.
It was gathered on a good authority that the governor has been squatting with his elder sister (de facto governor) at her private residence despite the fact that the same governor has his private residence on the same axis popularly called (Ede country-home). This, has further lent credence to the insinuation that the governor is not in-charge, as he is being controlled by his relations especially by the two de facto governor.
As hilarious as it appears, one of the de facto governors has been acting behind the scene since the inception of the Adeleke’s administration, while the other engages in open dealings on governance matters with the support of the Chief of Staff.
However, there is no doubt in the fact that, the incumbent government which has been feasting on lies of its diabolical ‘Executive Orders’ targeted to earn undue sympathies on matters of public concern has become a subject of discuss as many ponder on what could have led the state to the state of uncertainty.
Though, ‘uneasy lies the head that wears the crown’, but in the case of the state, the whole scenario as manifested in the way and manner the state has been governed in the last one year had retrogressively dragged the state back in all ramifications.
One would wonder why a state like Osun that hosts the cradle of Yoruba race with substantial size of educated population; frontline professionals and foremost religious leaders, would be governed by a perceived pawn.
In what appears as an affirmation of the popular opinion, the free conversations at different quarters in relation to governance since the inception of the current administration ostensibly pointed out the rots in the system.
While it was equally adjudged that the Adeleke-led government has practically dashed the people’s hope, many were of the opinion that the incompetence on the part of the governor to administer the affairs of the state without family interference culminated into woes.
Interrogating the emerging issues around the system vis-a-vis the way and manner the state has been administered in the last few months, it is safe to opine that the state is on the verge of being run aground if the identified ills are not swiftly addressed.
Juxtaposing the humongous amount of money, and other tangible supports the state has received from the federal government to cushion the effects of fuel subsidy removal, with the way and manner same has been handled by the state government, no doubt ‘the administration has practically failed.’
These submissions are, in no doubt, the pointer to existing reality, as it further lend credence to the imminent failure of the State Government in all sectors.
Many are bothered with the unfolding events characterized with nepotism of the highest order that had become a norm in the system as manifested in decisions making and policies implementation.
The impunity in the system has become the bane of socioeconomic advancement and clog in the wheel of progress of the state in the last one year thus, leaving citizens to ponder who is truly in-charge of the affairs of the state.
It is apparent that since the emergence of the current administration, the style of governance had abysmally changed. Clannishness has taken the centre stage, nepotism is at its peak and god-fatherism has come to stay.
If truly, a governor is made to be responsible to all that happen under his watch, thus, it is psychologically correct to say that many of the decisions, if not all, were taken by the de facto governors with little or no input from the incumbent Governor.
The hypocritical claims of the governor’s elder brother, that the emergence of Governor Adeleke would put an end to the era of god-fatherism in governance has shown clearly that the whole thing was skewed to elevate the Adeleke’s political dynasty.
Meanwhile, in the next few days, the administration of Governor Adeleke would be marking a year in office, with little or no tangible achievement to showcase.
But we should be all reminded that a year is gone in four years. Observers are observing. Commentators are commenting and posterity is beckoning. The end justifies the means.
May God heal our land.
Coups: Niger, Mali, Burkina Faso alliance won’t weaken ECOWAS resolve for democracy — Tinubu
President Bola Tinubu on Sunday said the Sahel Alliance by Niger, Mali, and Burkina Faso which are under military dictatorship would not lessen the resolve of the Economic Community of West African States, ECOWAS, to uphold its primary objective.
President Tinubu also said that the regional bloc will re-engage member countries under military rule based on realistic and short transition plans that would deliver democracy and good governance.
He said the new approach will help to achieve a quicker return to constitutional democracy in some of the West African Countries.
Speaking in his opening address at the 64th Ordinary Session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government at the Old Banquet Hall, Presidential Villa, Abuja, the Nigerian President, who said that there is no place for military rule in Africa, explained that the objective of the ECOWAS in insisting for democracy is to prioritise good governance for West Africans, as it catalyzes socioeconomic transformation and development.
He told heads of state that, “It is important that we also review some development in our sub-region, including the move by some of our members under Military rule to float an Alliance of Sahel States.
“This phantom, push back-alliance appears intended to divert attention from our mutual quest for democracy and good governance that will impact the life of our people.
“We refuse to be detracted from pursuing the collective dreams, aspirations and the noble path of ECOWAS integration as laid out in our institutional and legal frameworks.”
Recall that in September 2023, Mali’s Assimi Goita, who seized power in a military coup in 2020, explained that the “Liptako-Gourma Charter” forms the building block for an “Alliance of Sahel States to establish a collective defence and mutual assistance framework for our populations.”
This is coming on the heels of months of diplomatic row in the wake of the coup d’état in Niger that overthrew the Mohamed Bazoum-led government in Republic of Niger that attracted anger, sanctions and even the threat of military intervention from the ECOWAS.
But in his address at the Extraordinary Session in Abuja, the regional body Chairman maintained that the sanctions on the countries that overthrew the democratically elected leaders were meant to protect the fundamental liberties of the citizens.
According to him, “While the imposition of punitive sanctions may pose challenges, it is important to underscore that the struggle to protect the fundamental liberties of our Community Citizens must be upheld and respected.
“To this end, I would like to reiterate the imperative of re-engaging with the countries under military rule on the basis of realistic and short transition plans that can deliver democracy and good governance.
“On our part, we should be prepared to provide them with technical and material support to ensure the achievement of these strategic goals.
“We must pay attention to protect the institution and protect democracy I wish to underscore the fact that we stand against the unconstitutional change of government in our sub-region and we will continue to do so.”
He reiterated that Military rule is an aberration that subverts the popular will of the people hence it no longer has a place in Africa.
He said, “The message must go out loud and clear military rule has become an aberration that subverts the popular will of the people. It no longer has any place in Africa.
“Our people must be allowed to exercise their freedom of choice without let or hindrance. For democracy to endure in our sub-region, we must improve on good government and respect human rights and the rule of law.”
However, he said member states must “improve on good government and respect human rights and the rule of law” for democracy to endure in the sub-region.
Tinubu also commended his Liberian counterpart, George Weah, for conceding defeat at the just-concluded presidential elections and laying the groundwork for a smooth transition of power.
“By conceding defeat and congratulating his opponent, President Weah has left a legacy to be emulated by politicians in our region and beyond.
“On behalf of Members of the Authority, I express gratitude for his significant contributions to the Organization and wish him the very best in all his future endeavours,” said the President.
He assured the Sierra Leonean President, Julius Bio and Guinea Bissau’s Umaro Embalo of the bloc’s support in preserving democracy.
Tinubu said, “On the recent disturbances in Sierra Leone and Guinea Bissau, let me express my solidarity with the People and Government of Sierra Leone and Guinea Bissau.
“I wish also to underscore our unequivocal stance against any form of unconstitutional change of government in our sub-region.
“I therefore urge all of us to stand strong and united in solidarity with the People and Governments of Sierra Leone and Guinea Bissau in the face of these unfortunate incidents.”
On his part, the President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr Omar Touray, lamented that while the Niger Junta continues to hold Bazoum and his family hostage, they are also interfering with the flow of humanitarian support to vulnerable populations.
“The military authorities have unfortunately shown little remorse as they hold onto their untenable positions, holding not only Mohamed Bazoum, his family and members of his government hostage but also the people of Niger.
“And in line with the provisions of our community texts, they granted humanitarian access to medical and humanitarian goods for the sake of the people
2024 Budget: Group asks FG to increase budget to education sector
The Executive Director of the FlexiSAF, Amina Abubakar, has called on the federal government and the National Assembly to increase the budgetary allocation to the education sector and implement it’s policy of free basic education for all.
She made the call after embarking on a walk tagged “Walk for Education 3.0” to draw the attention of critical stakeholders to the need to improve education in the country.
According to her, despite the United Nations’ goal for education, Nigeria remains one of the countries with the highest number of out-of-school children in the world, adding that Nigeria still has more than 10 million children out there who can’t afford education.
” We have more than 10 million children out of school which is one of the highest in the world and UNESCO recommended at least 23% of the budget be set aside for education but right now only 8.2 percent is been set aside and even with that no proper implementation, no teachers in school, poor learning environment.
” If the government promises free and quality education let it be so because in the communities, parents are asked to bring a lot of money they can’t afford so they keep the children out of school the objective is to raise resources to send these children back to school. We want to empower young people.
“We are pushing for the National Assembly to increase the budget for education. Right now the state of education in Nigeria is nothing to write home about, it is a state of emergency, and 2030 is seven years away we have spent 8 years since the declaration by the United Nations in 2015 globally we only made 15% progress so we want the National Assembly to increase so we can achieve the set goal. The federal government must increase the budget.
“So today our target is that we want the government to implement free education for all. The government says education is free, basic education is free. But a lot of children are not in school because it is not free,” she said.
She further stated that the target of the organization was to ensure that at least 600 children get back to school.
“After we achieve that, part of our future plans is to make this work bigger, even more strategic. The more we get embedded into the space, build our capacity, we would make it more and more big,” she said.
She called for support from the government and other relevant stakeholders to achieve their objective.
“I want to reiterate the theme for this year, which is “2030 and the horizon. We are trying to better each and every year. Kindly come to our tables to make a commitment to help children go back to school. As you can see the children you have seen here are from our accelerated learning program. It is a non formal learning programme that helps kids in the community.
“The children don’t have to go to school everyday for long hours so we have community acceptability. Instead of learning for nine years, these over aged children they learn in three years. So you may be wondering what kind of expertise does this FlexiSAF Foundation have that they are giving education meant for nine years in three years. What kind of madness is that? I am telling you, it is not madness. It true. In fact it is a nationally approved accelerated education curriculum. It is also called accelrated basic education. Instead of learning in nine years these children learn in three years.
“What you saw here they learnt in less than 12 months and this girl is speaking English to you and everything. So please do well to encourage FlexiSAF foundation. The Foundation was established in 2018 and so far we have supported more than 5000 children and with your support we can do more.
We even feed this children as you can see them. We don’t believe we can do this work alone. Everybody has to come together. We have together to speak with one voice.
Director General of the National Information Technology Development Agency (NITDA), Dr Kashifu Inuwa, said digital infrastructure was necessary to get quality education.
“So at NITDA we have part of our strategic roadmap and action plan. We have a pillar to include inclusive access to digital infrastructure and services. And for the past four years we have implemented more than 1200 projects in unserved and underserved communities mostly in the education system; secondary schools and higher institutions.
“So we will do more and also we have a target of implementing the national literacy framework to achieve 95% digital literacy by 2030. So, we want to work with foundations like to define our initiative for quality and inclusive access to education through digital infrastructure. From next year we are coming up with the new initiative; learning centres will be deployed three per state. Our target is public schools where they don’t have infrastructure,” he said.
The Special Adviser to the Minister of State for Education Mrs. Claris Ojani urged the legislative arm of Government to and implement that will enable children leave the streets and acquire basic education.
She pledged the support of the Federal Government to the initial by FlexiSAF
Kwara Gov receives VP Kashim Shettima in Ilorin hails peace harmony in Kwara
Kwara State Governor and Chairman Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq on Saturday received Vice President Kashim Shettima (GCON) in Ilorin, the state capital, amid a rousing welcome by several APC leaders and people of the state.
Vice President Shettima was received by the Governor at the Tunde Idiagbon Airport, joined by Deputy Governor Kayode Alabi; Speaker Kwara House of Assembly Rt Hon Yakubu Salihu Danladi; Sen Salihu Mustapha (Kwara Central); Sen. Sadiq Umar (North); some members of the state executive council; and CEO KAM Holdings Nigeria Alhaji Kamaru Yusuf.
The Vice President touched down at the airport at exactly 3p.m., accompanied by his Special Assistant on Political Matters Dr. Hakeem Baba Ahmed; and top APC chieftain Dr. Isia’q Modibbo Kawu; among others.
Shettima headed to the Al-Hikmah University, Ilorin, where he commissioned the institution’s Nursing Science Complex, which has been named after him.
The Vice President then delivered the university’s 13th convocation lecture that was themed ‘Addressing Nigeria’s Food Security Challenges Through Hi-Tech Approach: The Role of Nigerian Universities’.
Other dignitaries at the occasion included the Inspector General of Police IGP Kayode Egbetokun, who has just received his doctoral degree from the institution; founder of the University Chief AbdulRaheem Oladimeji (OFR); and Vice Chancellor of the University Prof. Noah Yusuf.
Shettima, in his lecture, said Nigeria’s reliance on oil since the early 70s and the neglect of the agricultural sector are responsible for what has today become a national security challenge in the form of food insecurity.
He said the challenge assumed a disturbing proportion as a result of policy inconsistencies, mismanagement of resources, corruption, climate change, insurgencies, and natural disasters, among others.
He said President Bola Ahmed Tinubu understands the nexus between food production and national security, and has declared a state of emergency on food security alongside a policy commitment to improve productivity by injecting more funds in the sector.
Tertiary institutions are playing critical roles in assisting the Federal Government to promote food security in Nigeria through research and the integration of agricultural study in their curriculum, the vice president said.
He said no appreciable progress can be made in agricultural production without mechanization, calling for increased and efficient use of modern technology to maximise yield.
The Vice President described Governor AbdulRazaq as a prudent leader and commended him for various agricultural initiatives the administration has introduced to boost food production in the state.
Speaking about the cultural composition of Ilorin, which he said exemplifies a spirit of brotherhood, Shettima said Nigeria has a lot to learn from the ancient city, calling on all indigenes of Ilorin to continue to be tolerant and supportive of one another.
Chief Press Secretary to the Governor
December 9, 2023
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