By Abiodun Komolafe
A few days back, Nigerians were treated to certain insinuations from the _Peoples Democratic Party_ (PDP) in Osun State, which suggested that the current government in Osun, led by the _All Progressives Congress_ (APC), has neglected the development of extant infrastructure in the state.
To start with, this accusation, coming from the PDP – a political party, which, when in government, could not even fathom the definition of development – is laughable! To put it mildly, what the society experienced during the unfortunate tenure and political misdemeanors of the PDP administration in Osun could be likened to the trauma of voyagers in the hands of drunken sailors and a senile captain, in a rudderless ship, on the blue ocean, heading wherever the wind and storms blow.
Out of government, the true character of the party became manifest: cluelessness! And, now that elections are near, rude and crude attempts are being made to grab political power. The pertinent question is: _‘to what purpose’?_ Well, to have unfettered access to the state’s resources. Therefore, like a flurry of people, who just woke up from a self-induced slumber, PDP is spewing jumbled and disillusioned alarms, just to show to the world that it is still relevant. But, this first step, after a slide into stupor, was a wrong move. Since the party has nothing meaningful to offer, it launched a blind tirade. It is akin to a wild goose chase.
It’s annoying that PDP was scavenging the state for scraps that would match its dubious expectations. Thankfully, the reality on ground was not only different; it has further exposed the state of unpreparedness of a political party that is struggling to capture power by any means necessary. Were the party structurally on ground, with a functional, well-equipped R&D Department, Nigerians would have been availed of credible and practicable development options and suggested paradigmatic shifts in the economic and socio-political template of Nigeria’s Public administration.
Were the PDP stalwarts well-informed – and appropriately so – they would not have washed their dirty linen in the public, especially at a time an election as important as ‘Osun Guber’ is around the corner. In saner climes, where political practitioners truly know their onions, a serious opposition party will, by now, be selling itself to the consciousness of the voting public. Yes, PDP ought to be telling Nigerians what’s good about the party, and proffering solutions to problems, instead of indulging in fruitless discourses and darkened counsels that are only destined to compound its political woes.
He who comes to equity must come with clean hands! In the camp of the PDP, it is assumed that Nigerians have short memory. But it is not so! At a time like this, Nigerians do remember an opposition party that was once in power; when public service epilepsy was the order of the day. Peace was the first casualty of its administrative incompetence. It was like yesterday, when residents of Osun were living in palpable fear.
Fledgling as it may still be, it is interesting to note that Nigeria’s democracy has grown beyond idle talks. It has moved past fake, lazy, unattainable promises, and _‘jeun-jeun’_ politics. What Osun needs now are issue-based politics and progressive ideas that can gear the _‘State of the Virtuous’_ towards attaining astonishing heights. Again, this is where the mien, charisma and self-worth of Adegboyega Oyetola, the Governor of Osun, come into play.
I have argued elsewhere that Oyetola is a man of wisdom, experience, talent, potentials and repository of good character; and that his worldview, appreciation of life, love for details, spiritual depth, reverence for God and the advantage of age have gone a long way in preparing him for the rigours and responsibilities that the office of the Governor of Osun demands. With him in the saddle, interests now point in the direction of systematic delivery of political doctrines. More to the point, life here is no longer about worries of sorrow but steps of faith. Broken dreams are now turning into lives redeemed even as what we once used to fear in the state has now begun to fear us.
In fairness to posterity, even the blind can see the infrastructure renewal that is currently going on in Osun. This administration is approaching the development of the state, many of which are systemic, from a holistic perspective. Yes, the approach must be holistic to have a maximum impact on the social configurations and conditions of existence of the residents of the state. For instance, Oyetola’s government started from the Health Sector, saying: for the people to enjoy the government and the dividends of democracy, they must be healthy. Health is wealth! Of course, that speaks volume of the governor’s good intentions for the governed.
Considering the economic viability of the state, government convened an Economic and Investment Summit, which is already yielding positive results. The establishment of a fruit juice production company in Ede, recently, is one of them. Interestingly, the raw materials are here. So, everything about it is about here and our people.
While Oyetola’s interventions speak to the well-intentioned vision of the government for better water resources and energy healthcare for Osun and its people, his achievements in the Agriculture, Mining and other sectors are also there for all to see. Yours sincerely will return to some of them in subsequent write-ups.
On the infrastructure of roads already completed, or under construction, I am sure residents of towns and villages like Osogbo, Ejigbo, Iwo, Ede, Ilesa, Ijebu-Jesa, Iragbiji, Ife, Modakeke and Ikirun will be proud to tell Nigerians that Oyetola is a unique performer with the Midas touch.
Talking about the standard of education in Osun, Oyetola considers education as the bedrock of development. He is of the opinion that people must buy into a policy. Otherwise, such a policy will be counter-productive. Consequently, the governor embraced the _‘philosophy of what works’,_ aimed at ensuring that the state gets the best. The reversal of many of the let-go policies is in tandem with this philosophy.
May the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world, make Gboyega Oyetola’s Administration the best in the history of Osun State!
Komolafe is Senior Special Assistant to Governor Oyetola on Media.