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Omi Titun: Why Oyo Deserves A Fresh Start With Seyi Makinde | Remi Adebayo

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Makinde during one of his thank-you tours

The innovative democratic process allowing for termly change of tenured public office replacement may not be appreciated that much but stands best to be creative and life-saving initiative.

I do amaze what the hell the world would be should the worst of history retained and on the flip side, what a paradise the world should be if all good are retained. Your imagination, I’m sure quite support the later, I know.

In that too, there is that temptation not to appreciate the good without the evil and value the evil without the good. So, in the wisdom of God and the crafters of the democratic order, there must always be a flip side to everything for proper valuation and proportional appreciation of item or deed.

In this regard, it is improper to ever desire the best without having idea about what the pains of the opposite portends for a complete experience; hence the attraction to seek for the present in the past and past in the present.

Of course, of what value is the rain after long drought if not to clear dust, but only recurrent rainfalls guarantee abundance of water to herald refreshing time where life is restored and fresh life injected for health, satisfaction; restoration and new hope.

Each time the people of Oyo State have to reflect about those years of the cankerworm and depletions; those wasted opportunities to make it right, those mouth-watering pledges to give them hope; hope of a flourishing future, they have often been left in pains of not realizing the said promises and much more left in that pains of the psyche of that dust-quenching rain, not yet fresh water – Omi Titun!

The experiences of the state’s workers, pensioners and residents all speak volume about a rough and tough deal which have been their lots with the current leadership. 

This leaves them with fresh alternatives to reevaluate their past pact but now determined to disengage themselves from bad leadership. The people deserve a leader they can own and trust since it is just the right time to drink from the living spring – Omi titun.

Among the set of candidates toiling to govern Oyo State from May 29, 2019, Oluseyi Abiodun Makinde, an engineer, scores highest, not just for accumulating enormous resources from where he reaches out to the people; aiding them at their moments of need, but he stands out to be trusted and of course in addition to gaining required competence which are blessings to the state, if allowed to be governor.

Businessman, engineer and an exceptional philanthropist, Makinde unlike his peers had chosen a solid career path at the tender age of 29 when in 1997 he established his oil and gas firm, Makon Engineering and Technical Services (METS), that is after he had bagged educational degrees and acquired working and field experiences to make an entrepreneur of his type succeed.

After graduating from the University of Lagos in 1985 with the Bachelor degree in Electrical Engineering, Makinde participated in the mandatory National Youth Service Corps, (NYSC), serving with Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria and was thereafter retained for his dedication and commitment to the organization and his assignment.

In his determination to seek further studies to meet the challenges of the time, the enigma Makinde proceeded to Houston Texas in the United States where he received training in Industrial Control Services on Safety Shutdown System, and in 1999, he studied Development of Analytical Competence for Managing Operations at the Lagos Business School, now Pan-Atlantic University; by 2002 he proceeded to study Fundamentals of Crude Sampling at Jiskoot Auto Control Training Centre in Kent, England.

Makinde returned to the US in 2005 to acquire knowledge, this time, to study Understanding and Solving Complex Business Problems at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT); that training was meant to prepare him more to undertake the intricacies and dynamics of the complex business and public world where he has become a major player.

Beside these, Makinde is a member of many professional bodies including the Nigerian Society of Engineers (NSE), Council for the Regulations of Engineering in Nigeria (COREN), Oil and Gas Design Engineers of Nigeria (OGDEN), International Society of Automation (ISA), Institute of Measurement and Control UK; and American Measuring Institute (AMI) among others.

If these academic preparations that have contributed to Makinde’s business success would not be value addition to make Oyo a state of pride, one wonders what will do.

Young, rich, successful but surpriingly equally humble, it will take a man of Makinde’s truthfulness to pull a state as large and complex as Oyo out of its leadership, infrastructural and economic deficits.

As a philanthropist, he has made his marks on the sand of time and keeps making his impacts felt regardless of location or political lines. 

For instance, in 2000, while visiting his alma mater – Bishop Philips Academy in Ibadan, Makinde met a dilapidated state of classrooms and offered to build them which he did to record time, but not just that, going further to install a 5KVA generator in the school; provided the state-of-the art information and communication technology gadgets. 

In the same spirit, the oil magnate turned political icon constructed a science laboratory for PEN Junior School, Iyaganku. How more can one give back even as a private citizen!

In addition, his philanthropic interventions touched areas of water drilling borehole at Oja-Igbo, Ogbere, Ajia Village as well as many other communities in the state.

Makinde donated block of classrooms to Bishop Oyebode Memorial Primary School, Agugu same as BOMAC Primary School in Oremeji, Ibadan and many of such interventions. Also, out of humanitarian posture, he provided relief materials to victims of fire disaster and flood disasters across the state. 

As lover of mankind and in order to ease the pains of the Soka people after the regrettable Soka tragedy, Makinde went into the neighbourhood to donate an electricity transformer to light up the community and end insecurity. Same gesture was replicated with the installation of street light and provision of a 10KVA generator in Ikolaba.

He renovated the Ibadan House; constructed the Olatunbosun Makinde Media and Agro Allied Hall in Ajia Village, Ona-Ara Local Government Area of the state and also provided gas turbine and street light at the same community.

He has given scholarships to many students; given many a chance to acquire skills and sponsored a number of pilgrims to the Holy lands of Mecca and Jerusalem as believer in God and unity of humankind.

Many indigenes have benefitted and still benefitting from his Youth Empowerment programmes since it was initiated in 2006. These and many more cannot be rivalled today.

In the buildup to the 2019 governorship election in Oyo state, the space must be cleared at once to allow the likes of Makinde, whose natural inclination to help others live quality lifestyle and improved living conditions access the people’s mandate to do more. Whatever he may have done at his personal expense can only be multiplied if voted into power.

Naturally, it is logical that a state nosediving for poor leadership, external intervention in its polity, increased population with proportional poverty  where workers are unapologetically owed salaries like slaves; a state where entitlements of the people are turned into privileges; where dignity of its citizens are fast receding  like scarce commodity,  unarguably needs a clean departure from the disgraceful experience as it stands today and only a man with the compassionate pedigrees of Makinde should be given that chance.

Already, while embarking on the ‘thank you’ visits to communities after his victory at the primary, the Peoples Democratic Party, (PDP) candidate has left no one in doubt about his craving to provoke genuine economic revival in the state said to be pacesetting if given a chance.

He intends to do this by purposely investing in exclusive commodities in each localities that should attract commercial and economic patronages to those societies; doing these in addition to that determination to reduce infrastructural, social and human capital deficits in the state.

Seyi has promised to open up governance for inclusiveness leadership if voted in to be governor, and that with him on the seat, Oyo people will have the opportunity to prioritize and domesticate their needs without the servitude of the past where taskmasters virtually compelled force policies and issues down their throats without their input. That era will be gone, and forgotten. 

Seyi Makinde therefore presents a new chance for the people of Oyo state, this time around to fetch from the pool of that fresh water – Omi Titun towards attaining a turnaround that will get them pairing up with the league of functional states  and more importantly, to restore Oyo state to its genuine path of glory being truly a state to be proud of as Pacesetter.

Adebayo, an indigene of Oyo, can be reached via remadebayo@gmail.com and 08069537684.

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