All those associated with the government of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola of Osun should be proud that the state has provided templates in many areas of developments initiatives which Nigeria can adopt for national development.
The Special Adviser to the Governor on Information and Strategy, Mr. Semiu Okanlawon, stated this at the weekend, during the installation of the first female Rotary President of Osogbo GRA, Olori Bola Akinyemi, at the state capital of Osun.
Okanlawon, who was one of the awardees, while dedicating the Achievers’ Merit Award conferred on him to the people of Osun, said the people of the state deserved endless commendations and recognitions for providing the Aregbesola administration the atmosphere needed to use Osun for the development experiments which have earned us local and international commendations.
The Special Adviser said it was significant that Rotary Club, an organisation focused on service to humanity globally, selected officials of the Aregbesola administration for recognition, stating that the awards were actually meant for the people who have been supportive of the government in its numerous development strategies.
“I am happy today for this recognition. However, I am happier that Osun is getting all the recognitions from all over the world due to the ingenious development ideas of the Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola.
“I am happy that the World Bank representative who presented me this award on behalf of the Rotary International, in the course of her presentation, made reference to the World Bank-backed YESSO program which was launched in 2014 in Abuja for the whole of the country.
“That scheme is an adaptation of the Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (OYES) which was launched less than 100 days Governor Aregbesola assumed leadership of this state.
“Yes, the opposition derided us over this scheme but today, it remains the best emergency solution so far to the problem of youths restiveness, crimes, prostitution and other vices,” Okanlawon stated
He also listed initiatives such as the introduction of interest-free Islamic bond, Sukuk as an alternative source of financing for life changing projects; introduction of free train services for the indigenes to travel during festive seasons; introduction of same school uniforms which creates jobs for local tailors, introduction of statewide security network which ensures that all parts of the state are secured as some of the initiatives that have been experimented with in the state.
The Governor’s aide said apart from youths engagements scheme, the Aregbesola administration has created formula which are being followed not only by some states but by the Federal Government.
He said, “When the Federal Government moved to implement a nationwide school feeding program, it did not turn elsewhere for an existing template other than Osun. These are the reasons we are proud that our state has given Nigeria many steps to follow in the search for development initiatives.”
The Governor was also named as Honorary Rotarian by the club. Among those who were also honored by the Rotary club were the state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Rafiu Isamotu, the state Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Barrister Kolapo Alimi; an Osogbo based chieftain of the APC, Engr Sola Oladepo; the state Secretary of the APC, Mr. Rasak Salinsile.
The state Chairman of the party, Prince Gboyega Famodun, and the Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice in the state, Dr. Ajibola Basiru, urged the awardees to remember service to humanity which is the focus of the Rotary Club and the government of Osun in which they serve in their relationships with the Club.