L-R: Speaker, Ekiti State House of Assembly, Dr. Adewale Omirin; Deputy Governor, Ekiti State, Prof. Modupe Adelabu; Governor Kayode Fayemi; his wife, Erelu Bisi Fayemi; and Head of Service, Mr. Bunmi Famosaya, mni, during the annual Inter-Religious New Year Thanksgiving Service, heralding the commencement of work, at the Government House, Ado-Ekiti… on Thursday.
Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, on Thursday led top government functionaries, civil servants, elder statesmen and traditional rulers in a thanksgiving service heralding the first working day of the year 2014.
For about three hours, the congregation coordinated by clerics from both the Christian and Islamic faith sang, danced and prayed for peace and prosperity of the state in the new year. The inter-religious thanksgiving service is an annual event of the state government since the inception of the administration of Governor Kayode Fayemi.
Governor Fayemi, who read the first lesson of the service, in his address restated the need to the citizens to work towards the peaceful conduct of the 2014 polls, which according to him is crucial to the state.
The Governor who described 2014 as a “crucial year of decision” for the people of the state advised governorship aspirants and their followers to pursue their ambition in consonance with the laws of the land without resort to lies, blackmail, violence, chaos and anarchy.
He said the choice of who becomes governor must be left to the people of the state whom he said are wise enough to know what is good for them and who is fit to be their leader.
While noting that God has been good to the state in the last three years as Ekiti has enjoyed peace and tranquility, Fayemi urged traditional rulers and religious leaders to join him in preaching peace.
He said: “I want to encourage political office seekers and their supporters to pursue their ambition in accordance with the laws of the land. Let them inform and convince Ekiti people of their agenda on how to make Ekiti better; we do not need to lie, embellish or exaggerate.”, the Governor said at the event which was graced by his wife, Erelu Bisi Fayemi; the state Deputy Governor, Prof Modupe Adelabu; and no fewer than 40 traditional rulers in the state.
The Governor said: “The assumption that we are wiser than our people is not correct. When I went round recently during my village meetings with the people, they commended us for what we have done, they also drew our attention to the areas we need to improve.
“They asserted their rights and that is what we politicians cannot take away from them. I want to urge our traditional rulers and religious leaders not to relent in their efforts to ensure that we sustain the peace we enjoy in this state”.
While admitting that politics will take the centre stage in 2014 in Ekiti with the conduct of the gubernatorial polls, Fayemi promised that governance will not be allowed to suffer as the current mandate he is holds is expected to terminate on October 15 this year.
“Politics will not stop governance because this administration has a mandate and it will only expire on October 15, 2014. Our prayer is that our term will be renewed beyond that time but pending that, we have a job to do. “Whatever promise we make to you, it will be fulfilled by the grace of God because our word shall remain our bond”, he added.
In his sermon entitled: “Crossing the Jordan”, the retired Archbishop of Ondo Province of the Church of Nigeria (Anglican Communion), the Most Reverend Samuel Abe, assured that 2014 will bring blessings to Ekiti State.
Apparently alluding to the imminence of election in the state, Abe urged politicians to accept the fact that it is not everybody that can become governor.
The cleric said: “We can now see, hear, touch and feel what God has used this governor to do for us in this state because God has chosen a leader he has given power, vision and authority and I pray this year will bring blessings to Ekiti State.
The Chief Missioner of the Ansar-ud-Deen Society in the state, Alhaji Hadi Adebayo, in the second sermon said things are getting better in Ekiti State under Fayemi’s leadership because of his love for the people of the state irrespective of their religious leanings.
Adebayo said: “When this Governor came, he met us in good condition but our condition is now better but we want the best this time around.
“We Ekiti people owe God praises, there is no kidnapping, killing and arson in our state and we are enjoying peace. This governor has given us chance to thank God consistently in the last three years and things are getting better”.
The Awiye Adinni if Ekiti State, Alhaji Abdur-Raheem, during prayer session predicted victory for Fayemi at the polls on account of allowing the major religions to flourish, giving monthly stipends to old people and taking care of traditional rulers.
He charged the people of the state to fulfil their promise of voting Fayemi for second term warning that they should not allow anybody deceive them with money, bags of rice and other gifts.
Alluding to the success of the local government election held in Yobe State recently despite security challenges, Adebayo assured that the forthcoming polls in Ekiti will be peaceful.