Opinion

This Is My Testament

By Dimeji Daniels

The kind of trust you have in your mother as a little child when she cuts your nails. You know blade cuts and that it can cut you, but you just have a strong belief in your mom that despite the blade in her hand, you are safe. And despite it all, you even fall asleep, while your mother helps cut your nails with a blade. That is the kind of trust I have in Governor Kayode Fayemi.

It is not that I have never questioned his actions; I have. But in all of these, my faith in him has never shaken, rather it has grown stronger by the day because I realise that at the heart of all his decisions is a good heart – a good heart wanting to daily do good by his people. I also realise that despite being a governor, he is human.

Oh! yes, he has done excellently well in all the sectors. In education, there is the schools’ renovation, the one-computer-per-child policy, scholarships worth over N390 million, minus the students whose tuition he is funding abroad.

In health, free health for the aged, pregnant women and under-5 children, not to mention the almost 500, 000 who have benefited from the state-sponsored free health mission, excluding the recently concluded Ilera La’afin.

Before the advent of the Fayemi administration in 2010, only 45 per cent of women in Ekiti had more than four ante-natal care visits from pregnancy to delivery, but as at July 2012, 10,787 women had registered for ante-natal care under the Fayemi administration free health programme. This is just a small number of the 112,395 people who had registered for the programme by July 2012.

Under this administration, road construction is unrivalled in the history of Ekiti. Everyone attests to it. Of the 274.67 kilometres of roads initiated, 114.765km has been completed while 159.90km is ongoing. It is also on record that out of the 259.65km of roads inherited from previous administrations, 111.27km has been completed. This dwarfs any record so far in the history of the Land of Honour.

Till date, the Ekiti Social Security Scheme for the elderly persons has been domesticated in Osun, Bayelsa and many more states, but that of Ekiti still remains the best in terms of coverage, size and legal framework.

No doubt, Kayode Fayemi has done well and the people of Ekiti attest to this. But, never for once has the Governor said he has attained 100 percent or that he is perfect. No! He knows the journey is far from being over. He knows the areas he has touched, but which need a more concise touch. He knows education and health are always work in progress and these are part of what he has pledged to devote his second term in office to.

All those answers you are looking for, all those things you are yearning to see done, Dr. Kayode Fayemi is also in the know and working assiduously to bring them into effect. There are some who may say they don’t see the efforts, but the duck which appears to be moving effortlessly on a river has its feet underwater rigorously working to keep it afloat.

Who knew what was in the offing before the renovation of secondary schools? Who saw the intensive planning involved in the birth of the social security welfare scheme before it was implemented and became the darling of all? People only saw it when it became a reality.

Same way so many efforts will soon bear fruits, addressing whatever complaints you may still have. Forgive me, I am neither the governor’s spokesperson nor his government’s image-maker, but I know these things because I have seen his passion for Ekiti – for humanity – at first hand. I have watched closely to know how his heart works, and I am very sure it is full of the milk of kindness and commitment – commitment to the godly ideals which stipulate that nothing else matters than ensuring that our fellow men live dignified lives, not seeped in lack and hopeless faith.

I am well aware of the arguments that one term is enough, arguments being popularised mostly by governorship aspirants who are also in the battle for the Government House. Maybe what we should be asking them as a people is to present their blueprint as they seem to have busied themselves more with denigrating the achievements of the incumbent than presenting their own agenda. Sadly, that is what politics has been reduced to in Nigeria – a contest of vilest abuse and the downplay of better ideas.

These are the people, who like Segun Agagu, would spend the first two years of their four-year tenure planning. Must this be the direction we head in Ekiti?

I am also well aware of an alleged curse prohibiting second term in office in Ekiti. Honestly, I don’t think there is any curse. We all know the factors that led to the emergence of Ayo Fayose. We also all know why he had to be kicked out, otherwise we might be counting corpses today same way we are counting the number of roads done by the Fayemi administration.

We also know why Engineer Segun Oni couldn’t complete his term. As Proverbs 26:2 states “a curse causeless shall not come.” The ‘curse tale’ is another ploy by politicians to enthrone their selfish interests, but if really there is a curse, why would they become governor and seek a second term?

Fayemi never campaigned about any curse. Any politician doing so is self-serving and cannot in true conscience claim to love Ekiti. As residents and indigenes of this great land, we must cast away this ‘curse’ mentality being championed by fraudulent and agendaless politicians. Nothing stops us from giving a performing governor a second term.

Presidential historian, Doris Kearns Goodwin, noted: “If Lincoln hadn’t had a second term, he wouldn’t have won the Civil War.

If [Franklin] Roosevelt hadn’t had a second term, he’d be remembered as the president who didn’t end the Depression.”

I know they are telling you Fayemi has done all he would ever do. Does it appear to you so? Just two weeks ago, he sent six indigenes of Ekiti to study abroad. Recently, he awarded the contracts for the dualisation of Ikere, Ijero and Ikole road. Is that a man who has done all he could?

The reality, which confounds his traducers, is that Fayemi offers his best each new day and his best just keeps getting better. Ask yourself, has any governor in the history of Ekit ever rivalled the achievements of Fayemi in all sectors? If you would honestly answer that, then you’d know that there is still so much to be done to lay a solid foundation which no yahoo-yahoo governor can rubbish in six months, for the strong institutions on ground would compel such governor to tow the good path of his predecessor.

Like I said, I am not Governor Kayode Fayemi’s spokesperson, but I trust him explicitly to make Ekiti a place our children’s children would forever be proud of.

Save for Fayemi who has completed virtually all the projects instituted by his predecessor, Ekiti had had to contend with abandoned projects owing to envy and political immaturity by those before him. This can only be done by a man with a good heart and good grasp of governance devoid of parochial sentiments.

I trust him as I trusted my mother not to cut me with a blade while I was but a little boy anytime she helped cut my nails.
So, I am not just voting Kayode Fayemi because of his numerous projects. Far from it! I am voting JKF because he has a good heart and if you ask me, I have seen that at first hand. And this is for no patronage or palm-greasing. If I am held against a light, my integrity stands tall. It takes a good heart to be a humanist and a good leader. This is the short description of John Kayode Fayemi.

This is why John Kayode Fayemi has my vote for a second time. If he has your vote also, please join in the movement. It is not about party affiliation. It is about the conscientious, patriotic, people-loving, result-oriented and development-thirsty John Kayode Fayemi.

God bless JKF!

God bless Ekiti!

God bless us all!

‘Dimeji Daniels writes from Ado-Ekiti, Ekiti State

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