Home News ONE YEAR AFTER: 10 Important Things Makinde Said At His Inauguration

ONE YEAR AFTER: 10 Important Things Makinde Said At His Inauguration

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Exactly a year ago, in a significant moment in the history of Oyo State, Engr. Seyi Makinde was sworn in as governor of Oyo State.

The inaugration ceremony was, to the people of the state, the arrival of ‘Omi tuntun’ — the messiah who will take the state to the promised land.

Even though many a citizen have, after a year, concluded that Makinde is ‘just another governor’ who does not have what it takes to drive the state to its promised land, some have called for patience to allow the ‘people’s governor’ deliver his promises.



In this report, OYOINSIGHT.COM takes a look at ten important things Governor Seyi Makinde said on the historic day he was inaugurated to pilot the affairs of the state for the next four years at an historic venue — the Obafemi Awolowo Stadium.

A Progressive Administration

Even though Nigeria operates a multi-party system; based on political strength, there are only two major political parties in the countries — APC and PDP.

In the fight for public support, one thing that members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, don’t lose any opportunity to remind the populace of is that they are the ‘progressives’.
However, at his inaugration, Makinde, a member of the People’s Democratic Party, said:

“We will be a progressive administration; building on the programmes of past administrations that were structured properly and have been beneficial to the masses. When the need arises, we will consult our predecessors and draw on their experiences. We will put aside partisan politics for the good of our state.”

War Against Poverty

That there is poverty in Nigeria — the headquarters of poor people globally, is a truth that various data have added credence too.
During his inauguration, Makinde knowing this, promised the people of the state that he will confront poverty and usher in an era of progress and prosperity.

He said, “With good governance, we will more than confront poverty, we will usher in an era of progress and prosperity. To do this, I speak to your consciences; we have to shun the way things are currently done. Every one of us in every walk of life must embrace accountability and hard work. I promised the Nigerian Labour Congress during all of our meetings that our relationship will deal with issues openly and sincerely because we are all in this together.”

Agriculture

Speaking on the importance of Agriculture to boost the economy of the state, Makinde revealed that his administration will partner with the private sector.

In his words, “We recognise that one of our areas of comparative advantage is agriculture. I am excited to tell you today, that we have already taken steps to market our potentials.

Our farmers will be happy to know that we are in talks with Botswana to export our maize to them. Our African neighbours have in the recent past, imported from Central America, but they are ready to give us a chance. We welcome the delegation from Botswana led by Business Botswana President, Gobusamang Keebine.”

Free Education

Perhaps, many thought the idea of free education died with Awolowo, so, when Makinde, at his inaugration, announced that education in the state is now free, they could not hold back their joy.

To a certain extent, the announcement by Makinde that education is now free in the state is the most popular announcement the ‘people’s governor’ made to the people of the state exactly a year.

Even though a year after, many critics have opined that this announcement was made to attract public support and not based on logic considering the fact that the state needs every source of revenue generation it can get.

While making this particular announcement, Makinde said, “We spoke with parents of children in public secondary schools who out of their meager resources still have to scrounge N3,000 per child so that their children can get an education and increase their opportunities. Our region that housed the first university in Nigeria now has a state with the seventh highest number of out-of-school children. Over 400,000 children in Oyo State are out of school.

“Effective immediately, the school fees of N3, 000 in state-owned secondary schools is hereby abolished. We want enrolments to go up, we want our children off the streets and in the classrooms. We are throwing the school doors wide open. Whoever opens a school door, opens an opportunity. We are opening opportunities for a brighter future.”

Donated Entire Salary

The Governor also announced that he will, throughout his tenure, donate his salary to the pension scheme of teachers in the state.
In his words, “We know that quality education is not possible without quality teachers. Quality emoluments and benefits attract quality teachers. We are not ignorant of the plight of our dear teachers. We know the state of the teacher’s pension scheme. During my campaigns, I promised to donate my entire salary as governor to the Teacher’s Pension Fund. I stand by that promise.”

LAUTECH

Speaking on the LAUTECH, Makinde said, “We will seek practical ways to reposition the Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Ogbomoso. You are aware that the university is jointly owned by Osun and Oyo State. We will reach out to our sister state and share ideas on how to move the institution forward. Our priority is a total takeover.”

However, a year after, the governor is yet to fulfill his promise a total takeover of the institution or reveal to the public a plan on how he plan to do so.

People Living With Disabilities: ‘Relief Has Come’

Governor Seyi Makinde also promised people living with disabilities in the state a relief like never before.

In his words, “We spoke with people living with disabilities; successive governments have not paid adequate attention to our people who live with disabilities. We talked about the challenges and neglect they face; the lack of access to healthcare, education, work opportunities, and stigmatization.

“To people living with disabilities in our state, I say, your relief has come. We will establish a Commission for People Living with Disabilities.

The mandate of this parastatal will be to improve the lives of people living with disabilities. In addition, we will develop an institutional framework for enforcing compliance with our equal opportunity principle. We will also encourage the private sector to hire persons with disabilities by offering them tax incentives.”
Minimum Wage

At his inauguration, while speaking on the issue of the new minimum wage, which was a serious issue in the country at that moment, he said, “For example, I have always said that the Oyo State civil servants deserve to earn a whole lot more for their dedication and service to the state. Recently, the Federal Government announced a new salary scheme in which the lowest cadre of civil servants are expected to earn at least N30, 000.

“I know how access to this type of money will improve the lives of many of the families that I have had direct contact with. However, with the way the Oyo State account currently stands, I will be deceiving you if I said we are capable of taking on this burden.

“I believe in true Federalism. I believe the states should decide the minimum wage of their workforce based on individual realities. All states are not created equal, so it is against the principle of fairness to apply a blanket rule to govern them all.

“That being said, our plan is to make Oyo the first state to pay above the national minimum wage. We know this is possible. We have already set our plan in motion to make this possible. But, this requires time. We propose staggered increments. I met with organized labour during my campaigns and made a pledge to an open relationship.”

Hold Us Responsible

Speaking on the why and how the people of the state can hold him responsible, he said:
“Our focus as a government will be to implement policies which will give our people the tools they need to lift themselves out of grinding poverty and lack. We published our Road Map for Accelerated Development, 2019-2023, three months before the elections. We want you to hold us to our promises.

“In that document, we set forth our policies for tackling the infrastructure deficits, enabling an efficient health sector, improving security, youth empowerment, social inclusion and protection.

Our policies reflect an understanding of the magnitude of problems Oyo State people face and our determination to use the instruments of focused leadership to tackle them. We are not promising miracles, we promise that results will happen if we work together, and that you will see the results, some in a matter of weeks.”

The People’s Governor

That Makinde is regarded by his supporters as the people’s Governor is not a hearsay.
Speaking on why he will run an all-inclusive government, he said,”As I promised in my open letter to the people of Oyo State in December 2018, I will be the people’s governor. I will run an all-inclusive government for the benefit of everyone in our dear state regardless of their tribe, religion, social class or political affiliations.”

A year after, the question is that: Is Makinde still the people’s governor?

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