Hurray!!! The Government of the State of Osun under Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola is Seven. In many parts, it is worth celebrating. Seven years of Hard work, Seven Years of Progressive Leadership, Seven Years of Growth and Indeed, Seven Years of Building Legacies that are Indelible and Strategic for the Next Generation.
Perhaps, why will Aregbesola celebrate in a state that owes salaries, indebted to pensioners and has a huge debt profile? Despite these red flags, it is still worthy of mention that the dynamic transformation Osun has witnessed in the last seven years has put it on a pedestal of expected greatness in years to come.
For those who knew about the intrigues of the three and a half years legal battle that eventually returned him back to office and the tremendous achievements recorded so far, it is no clear understatement that the present government has done a lot in taking Osun far beyond where it was in November 2010 when it took over.
During the electioneering in 2007, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola had his developmental agenda which he enveloped in a small book titled “MY PACT WITH THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF OSUN” where he discussed thoroughly his six point integral action plan namely; Banish Hunger, Banish Poverty, Banish Unemployment, Promote Functional Education, Restore Healthy Living, Enhance Communal Peace and Progress.
Since he assumed office, he has pursued his programmes vigorously with doggedness, commitment and vision to achieve more. And with 90 days in office, Aregbesola did the unusual, he employed 20,000 unemployed indigenes of the state who hitherto have no job with #10,000 as their monthly pay. The effortless commitment to the people did not stop there, the Governor continued to roll out programmes which are of immense benefits to the state.
With his O-symbol, several policies and people oriented have been rolled out and are still rolling daily as if his 8-year mandate will not end one day. In the Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme O’YES, various interventions to gainfully engage the Youths after their 2-year period were instituted in collaboration with other government programmes like O’REAP, OYESTECH, O’HUB and so on.
In Education, Aregbesola re-jigged the sector by introducing a world class education reform programme, a baby of the Education Summit convoked by his government about 6 months into office that has resorted into mega schools, the award winning Tablet of Knowledge, OPON-IMO, O’Calisthenics, O’Uniform, O’MEAL that has fed over 350,000 elementary school pupils for the past seven years which the President Muhammadu Buhari administration has also adopted into its own Social Investment programme and many more that is earning the state accolades nationwide and internationally.
The government through its passion for excellence in all fields and ramifications ensured that 65 medical students of the Osun State University who were hampered to continue with their clinical studies in the university due to accreditation issues completed their medical education in Ukraine with thorough and adequate intervention,
In the Health Sector, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola upgraded the nine state hospitals in the state with the state hospital, Asubiaro in Osogbo refined to the status of a specialist hospital. Numerous interventions have been done in the realm of Free Eye Surgeries, Provision of Basic Drugs in health facilities, giving health grants, containing the break out of epidemics and the rest despite the daunting finances.
One of the areas where the present administration has received so much accolades is in Road Construction, one which has earned the Governor the name, ONA BABA ONA meaning the Extraordinaire Architect of Road Construction. In the last seven years, major roads have been built with the government rehabilitating, reconstructing and putting in place new ones. The efforts on Road Construction has been felt so much more with over 300 kilometers of township roads cutting across all the 30 local governments, 33 local council development areas, 2 area councils and 2 administrative offices.
Still on roads, 222km of rural roads have been done with support from World Bank and the French Government under Rural Access and Mobility Project RAMP that now connects the state together. Major roads also like the Gbongan-Osogbo road under construction with the Chief Bisi Akande trumpet interchange bridge, November 27 Interchange connecting two divisions of the Oba Adesoji Aderemi East Bye Pass, the dualisation of Osogbo/Ikirun/Ila-Odo, Kwara State boundary road and the very strategic, Ola-Iya/Asubiaro/Ita-Olokan Road that has just been completed.
Another beautiful thing is that not just that roads are constructed, the roads are of immense quality with thick bridges that can stand the test of time for years. In the history of the State of Osun, it is the Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola administration that will construct a road that has in it 7 big bridges within 7 years. That is unprecedented you”ll say.
Moving to Agriculture, the government through Osun Rural Enterprise and Agricultural Programme, O’REAP has empowered many, created opportunities for farmers as well as establishing opportunities for agriculture to thrive. In the sector, some members of the OYES who were enlisted to the O’REAP Youth Academy were sent to Germany on the bill of the State Government for thorough training on modern best practices in agriculture. Aside this, farmers were given lands with opportunities abound in O’BEEF, O’BOPS, O’CATTLE, O’HUB, O’PIG and others that have impacted positively on the citizenry and those involved.
About 20,000 Youths were given jobs in the first phase of O’YES. After 2 years, they were replaced with another set of 20,000 after the volunteers in the first phase were trained in several skills that helped shaped focus for the next challenges they were to face. A good example is OYESTECH which provided participants the opportunity to be trained in useful computer technology and mobile phone assemblage with repairs coming up. Selected Youths were sent to Ghana for training to come back and impact on others that has continued to yield positive results till today. A brainy intervention is the institutionalization of RLG Adulawo Technology City in Ilesa where mobile phones are assembled and other technological driven apparatus are done; all with efforts from the dynamic Rauf Aregbesola.
In commerce, Market Men and Women are incorporated into government’s programmes and policies. About 33,000 residents of the state have been empowered through the Osun Micro-Credit Agency, an agency of government that provides soft loans for small scale business owners in the state. Aside this, modern international markets like the Ayegbaju, Aje and Dagbolu International Market(s) which is still in focus have in a great deal transformed the state’s commercial sector. The Dagbolu Infrastructure Market which is still in focus is to be one of the foremost warehouses in the country. The newly introduced Standardized Weigh and Measures to promote efficiency, prudency and restore Trust into Trade activities is also a plus.
The Osun Free Train Ride that has conveyed over 350,000 passengers from Lagos to Osogbo during Christmas, Easter, Eid-El-Fitr and Eid-el-Kabir festivals has contributed in no small quantity to the economic situation of the state during festivities. Aside the free train, the just-concessioned Moshood Kashimawo Olawale Abiola International Airport, Ido-Osun when completed will be another blessing to the state’s economy. Apart from the numerous commercial benefits, it would also be helpful to local trade, employment opportunities, hospitality and many more.
On Security, Osun is the 13th safest in the federation with much more focus on ridding the state of crime. There is also the relative peaceful disposition between farmers and herdsmen that has plunged several parts of the North to serious danger with the committee put in place by the present administration. Businesses especially in the hospitality realm are springing up, The cocoa industry in Ede is being revived. The GDP has improved tremendously with Small and Medium Scale Enterprises given the opportunity to rise.
The State of Osun especially Osogbo, the state capital has been reformed physically. With the beautification efforts put in place by the current government, the state now looks cleaner, neater and beautiful. One of such is the Nelson Mandela Freedom Park, Osogbo, a former den of rascals that has turned to a beautiful amusement park that becomes a destination for birthdays, picnics and relaxation.
This write-up would not be complete without the support of the Civil Servants who have shown unequalled commitment to the course of the state. They have in hard times shown their doggedness to the course of developing Osun and making our State great. Despite not receiving full pay, they are avowed, diligent to duty. The State will never forget this sacrifice made when the nation’s economy nosedived which did not hinder the development vision of the visioner per excellence, Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola.
The government also appreciates the section of Pensioners who believe in this dream of rebranding our state while calling on those who keep condemning government every time to see reasons why Aregbesola has taken time with much more efforts to transform our state. Government is indeed committed to fulfilling all financial obligations when the state’s economy improves.
What Aregbesola has done in the last seven years is worthy of note and indelible as Osun in the next three to four decades will continue to savour what this man has been able to do. His successor will not have to reconstruct the roads, schools, bridges and other infrastructural projects he has done, they will have no other option than to build on the Existing Legacies and Mirror In the Future.
Special Thanks To Royal Fathers, Community Leaders, Market Men and Women, Artisans, Members of the Progressive Party, the APC and the Entire Citizens of Osun who believed in his re-election that has now culminated in the development witnessed and the legacies developed for the future.
Happy 7th Year Anniversary to the Progressive Leadership of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola!!!!!
Osun To Tin Dara, Ko Ni Ba Je Oooooo!