Oyo State governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, has declared that his administration has delivered dividends of democracy to the people of the state in the last seven years.
The governor, in a statement by his Special Adviser, Communication and Strategy, Mr. Bolaji Tunji, on Monday, gave his administration a pass mark, particularly in infrastructure development, security, education, agriculture and health care.
He said his government had built more roads than all the previous administrations combined since the inception of the fourth republic.
He listed some the completed roads to include the dualisation of strategic township roads in Ibadan such as Toll Gate interchange-Challenge; New Garage-Toll Gate Interchange and Onireke-Jericho-Aleshinloye-Dugbe-Agbarigo Road, as well dualisation of major township roads in Oyo, Ogbomoso and Iseyin.
Ongoing roads include Eleyele-Ologuneru-Eruwa road, dualisation of Saki township roads, Idi-Ape-Basorun-Akobo-Odogbo Barracks Junction Road; Gate-Old Ife Road-Alakia, as well as the expansion of Oke Adu-Iwo Road, the governor disclosed.
He did not leave out the construction of the Mokola flyover, the first to be done by any civilian administration in the state, as well as the revived Ibadan Circular Road project, which had remained a dream in the last 15 years, adding that the first phase of the project has been awarded to ENL Consortium Limited at the cost of N70bn, under a build, operate and transfer arrangement.
The governor also said the infrastructure upgrade included the urban flood management initiative targeted at checking the reoccurrence of the 2011 flooding in Ibadan, which consumed many lives and property.
He said the government had also tackled the perennial water shortage, which residents of Ibadan had been experiencing, by carrying out wholesale rehabilitation of Asejire Waterworks and also recently flagged off rehabilitation works on the Eleyele Dam, which was badly hit by the 2011 flood disaster.
According to Ajimobi, the state also recorded milestones in education with “the floating of the Education Trust Fund through which stakeholders now collaborate with the government to improve service delivery and boost the standard of education in the state”.
“This is aside the establishment of the Oyo State Model Education System Initiative (OYOMESI), which seeks to inculcate moral values in students and the School Governing Board (SGB) policy, which is a participatory model that brings together all stakeholders in the education system in the management of public secondary schools.
“Through this policy, more than N2bn has been injected into the education sector in the last one year, leading to improved infrastructure in schools. The SGB policy is now being studied by other states in the South-West zone as a masterstroke in participatory approach to the management of public schools”, the governor further disclosed.
Other success stories listed by the governor included, restoration of security in all parts of the state through the establishment of a special security outfit, code-named ‘Operation Burst’ and the provision of patrol vans, communications equipment and armoured personnel carriers for the police and other security agencies.
The governor said no fewer than 36 companies had been attracted to the state in the last seven years, generating about 4,000 direct employment for residents according to figures from the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, while the state was rated fifth most investment-friendly by the National Bureau of Statistics having attracted more than $61m (N22.4bn) in foreign direct investment.
“The health sector has also benefitted from the unique vision of our government with the floating of a N50bn Health Endowment Fund and a Health Insurance Scheme, both of which are firsts in Nigeria, as well as the launch of a five-year cancer control strategic plan to reduce cancer-related incidence and mortality”, the governor added.