The Peaceful Star, By Onifade Bello

It is a known truism that one cannot be gifted and not be needed. The appellation of the State of Osun as the ‘Land of Virtue’ has been accentuated close to three decades by a few personalities whose shrewd contributions to nation building have been felt within and outside the State. More than five decades ago, the breeze of thoughts kissed the scholars of Ejigbo to name the new born ‘Najeem Salaam’, literally the ‘Peaceful Star.’ Perhaps those scholars must have had a rendezvous with their colleagues in the Arabian Peninsula to have chosen such unique names for him. Behold! He has over the years practically demonstrated a personality of rectitude fueled by a wealth of divine royalty. After all, he is also ‘Folasayo’ whose ‘proven character’ has earned him ‘royalty.’ Indeed, he is Iwaloye.

Rt Hon. Najeem Salaam is a primus inter pares. Leading a 26-man legislative assembly requires astute political and administrative skills; especially when such an assembly is sited within a State so politically conscious like Osun. A legislative assembly is usually a composition of witty politicians whose robust contributions are often hinged on diverse interests. Harmonizing these diverse interests can only birth fecund results for their various constituencies when they have a leader whose prowess and knack for excellence transcends political affiliation or personal benefits. This has been the personification of Rt Hon. Salaam in leading the State of Osun House of Assembly over the years.

It is an open secret that Rt Hon. Salaam has been a catalyst to the progressive development of State of Osun; through his mutual understanding with various stakeholders in the State, notably the other arms of government. His potentials have made him a needed gift; not because he is the best but because he has been tested among the rest. Besides, you will only come to limelight in life by your potentials not necessarily by your credentials. But he has the potentials and the credentials. Although some politicians, perhaps, through enlightened ignorance or conscientious mischief, may be quibbling that a legislature not at loggerheads with other arms of government like the Executives is docile. But this perceptual inclination divorces truthful realities, especially in the pursuit of egalitarian policies which are expected to have meaningful impacts on the citizens of the State. Besides, when two elephants fight, the grasses suffer. Hence, it takes a visionary leadership like that of Rt Hon. Salaam to foster mutual intelligibility without tainting or jeopardizing the independence of the Legislature.

In time of deceit, telling the truth is a revolutionary act. In a nation where ostentatious lifestyle is ubiquitous among political office holders, Rt Hon. Salaam, despite his political status, epitomizes modesty. No wonder he downplayed a request for official cars for legislators by an Honourable member. Perhaps, our legislators at the top echelon need to emulate his modesty, especially at a time the nation has been battling with financial strait.

It is trite that if you don’t humble, you will stumble. A person’s good names travel with the wind even beyond one’s imagination. In actual fact, one’s names go beyond where one’s legs can reach; thereby bringing to the fore the Yoruba adage that ‘Iwa rere ni eso eniyan’ – ‘Good character is the adornment of a man.’ While politicians are alienated by discerning citizens due to their inglorious acts, Rt Hon. Salaam’s ennobling character has endeared him to many youths while his philanthropic generosity has earned him love among the elders. When people look up to him, he never looks down on them. He bears a countenance of simplicity; yet, he is never a simpleton.

He wears a robe of humility and dons a cap of service. No one walks without the head shaking. He surely knows where the shoe pinches him. His legislative prowess which has been synergized by incisive members of the State of Osun House of Assembly has facilitated the enactment of some invaluable bills; one of which has been a veritable tool to stimulate economic activities and prosperity in the State of Osun. Meanwhile, much is expected of his office to enlighten the masses about the pragmatic impacts of these bills. Yes, he does not like to sing his own praises; but no one knows the value of a treasure that is beneath the earth until it is unraveled. He can do more and will surely do more because it is not over until it is over.

No matter how tall a person is, he can never see the future; and no matter how good-looking he is, his radiance can never illuminate darkness. All in all, Rt Hon. Salaam seems to have dined with the American author, Maya Angelou, from whom he has practically learnt that: “when you learn, teach; when you get, give.” The future holds prospects for Iwaloye and my prayers are that: may his road be rough and may he continue to walk without stumbling. Amen.

Onifade A. Bello wrote in from University of Ibadan

Osun NSCDC Charged On Intelligence Gathering

The Speaker, State of Osun House of Assembly, Honourable Najeem Salaam has charged the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) to be more vigilant in discharging their duties. Salaam made this known on Wednesday when he received the new NSCDC boss in the state who paid him courtesy visit in his office.

 

According to him, though Osun is one of the safest states in the country, yet, the security agency must do the needful to ensure the security of lives and properties. In his reaction, the NSCDC boss, Akinwande Aboluwoye solicited the support and assistance of the house to fight crime in the state.

 

He used the medium to appeal to National Assembly to fast track the effort on NSCDC bill for constitutional backing.

He also pledged to work with other security personnel in the state for efficient job henceforth.

Osun Speaker Urges Economic Restructuring

Speaker, State of Osun House of Assembly, Hon. Najeem Salaam has asserted that economic restructuring that would steer the country from import dependent regime to productive nation should be the blueprint of the nation’s restructuring.

In his Independence day message signed by his spokesman, Mr. Goke Butika, Salaam said, it was obvious that the mantra of restructuring means different things to different people; depending on their affected interest, saying that it is thes rough edges in governance that are hindering deliveries as promised which led to renewed agitation.

He said that the attention given to non-oil sector like agriculture and taxation appears to have brought new thinking, saying there should economic restructuring in such a way that agriculture and petroleum net resources would be exported.

He canvassed strategies on manufacturing companies that could provide jobs for the unemployed.

Salaam further stressed that if economic opportunities are created for the restless youths, if corruption is brought to a considerable low and justice is delivered on all spheres of influence, the nation would be better off.

The speaker eulogised the people of Osun for their steadfastness and supports for Governor Rauf Aregbesola administration, noting that the rate at which the state got elevated in terms of development and provision of infrastructure in the last seven years has shown that the nation’s independence is worth celebrating.

LG Autonomy: Osun Assembly Lauds NULGE On Peaceful Procession

Speaker, State of Osun House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Najeem salaam has lauded the leadership of the Nigeria Union of Local Government Employees (NULGE) in the state for their peaceful procession on local government autonomy, saying the state parliament was impressed by their coordinated March, and would look into their demand when the constitutional amendment passed by the National Assembly is transmitted to the state Assembly.

Speaker Salaam who received the letter addressed to the state legislature on the need to support the local government autonomy by the leadership of the Union at his office, asserted that the parliament was a shrine of democracy where opinions and demands of the people are ventilated; assuring the local government workers that the state lawmakers would not work against the collective demand of their constituents.

He asked the leadership of NULGE and other critical stakeholders to take interest in the process of lobby when the amendment begins at the state assembly, noting that the union should bear in mind that 36 state Houses of Assembly would be involved in the process and two-third majority would be needed to get the desired result.

Appreciating the lawmakers, the state President of NULGE, Engineer Jacob Adedeji expresses his pleasure on the reception given to the union, saying that spoke volume on their support for the workers at the Local Government; asking the parliament to support the autonomy of the councils for the benefit of their growth.

Meanwhile, it was a fun-fare at the state parliament as the union members were singing and dancing to music after the procession before they returned to their union office.

Osun Assembly Tasks Corporation On Adequate Water Supply

By Israel Afolabi

State of Osun House of Assembly has assured the state Water Corporation of its supports to ensure adequate supply of water to the people of the state.

The Chairman, House Committee on Water Resources, Honourable Kamardeen Akanbi made this commitment on Thursday during the committee’s interaction with the agency at the Assembly Complex, Osogbo.

The parliamentarian who appreciated the state government under Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola for its investment towards sustainable water supply in the state, said the Water Corporation was invited to know how water is being supplied to the state from various dams..

According to him, “the first priority of good government is to ensure that potable water is made available for its people”.

Noting that the essence of the meeting was to prevent waterborne disease in the state, particularly during the Ileya festive period, he advised the concerned agencies to work on mini-storex in each wards across the state to alleviate problems of water supply.

In his response, the General Manager, Osun Water Corporation, Engr. Olugbenga Owojuyigbe assured that adequate water would flow in all the 13 local government presently being served by the existing water works.

Owojuyigbe who attributed epileptic water supply to the power failure and damage of old pipes across the state said, the rehabilitation is going on at Ede Water Works for regular water supply to its environments.

He also assured that Ede, Oyan, Eko-Ende, Esa-Odo, and Ila water work schemes would continue to function well for Osun people.

Also, the state General Manager, Rural Water and Environmental Sanitation Agency (RUWESA), Alhaji Adiatu Olaposi acknowledged the efforts of the state government in collaboration with UNICEF to put end to inadequate water supply in the state through provision of boreholes in every community across the state.

He disclosed that between June 2016 and July 2017, 214 new hand-pump boreholes have been constructed in all the nooks and crannies of Osun, while 85 boreholes were repaired under village level operation and maintenance.

He also said, 273 hand-pump and 10 force loft hand-pump boreholes have been completed in 189 communities in Odo-Otin and Ayedaade local government and handed over to the communities.

On sanitation, Olaposi revealed that total sanitation has been achieved in 19 communities in Odo-Otin with provision of washing facilities provided in 20 schools in Odo-Otin and Ayedaade local government areas.

According to him, “133 communities were certified Open Defecation Free (ODF) in the state with collaboration of UNICEF”, just as he urged every house owner in the state to make provision for toilet facilities or latrine to avoid epidemic in the state.

Giving Back To Society, My Priority – Osun Lawmaker

By Israel Afolabi

As part of his empowerment programme, the House of Assembly member representing Obokun State Constituency of the State of Osun, Olatunbosun Oyintiloye has distributed another set of farm inputs to farmers in his constituency.

It would be recalled that Oyintiloye had last week distributed farm inputs to farmers in Ibokun town, with a promise that the same gesture would be replicated in all the 10 wards of his constituency.

Distributing another sets of farm inputs, including cutlasses, herbicides to farmers, television set and cable decoder to the palace and other empowerment materials to artisans in Ilare-Ijesa, the headquarters of Obokun East Local Council Development Area in line with his promises, Oyintiloye said, the gesture was part of his commitment to better the lots of his constituents who are majorly farmers.

Oyintiloye who is the chairman House Committee on Information and Strategy said, no matter the economic challenges, he would continue to strive to give back to the people who have reposed their confidence in him and elected him as their representative.

Commending his constituents for the supports he had received before, during and after his election two years ago as a member of parliament, he said he has always made himself available for advise and suggestions, which, according to him has paid off for him.

He said he has chosen to distribute farm inputs in line with the Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration’s commitment to agricultural development and improvement of the living standard of the people, urging the people to also continue to support the administration

Oyintiloye who highlighted some of the developmental projects he had attracted to his constituency, or carried out from his earnings, said, he would continue to remain committed to the upliftment of his constituency.

While speaking, the All Progressives Congress (APC) Chairman in Obokun East LCDA, Mr Ismaila Kehinde and the former Secretary, Obokun Local Government, Mr Gbola Oguntoye commended the good gesture of the parliamentarian towards the people of his constituency, urging him to continue with his commitment.

Osun Lawmaker Tasks Politicians On Human Development 

—–Set To Empower People Of His Constituency

A member of the State of Osun House of Assembly, Hon. Waseeu Adebayo, has charged political office holders to use opportunity given to them by the people to change the face of the society.

Adebayo gave the charge while addressing journalists as part of the activities heralding his 2017 Empowerment Programme in Osogbo on Friday.

The lawmaker who noted that in democracy power belong to the people, said political office holders must always see people as centre piece of their programmes.

Charging his colleagues in both state and National Assembly on the need to give back to the society Adebayo said about 500O people have so far benefited from his empowerment programme.

He said the programme which was initiated for the past five years had impacted positively on the lives of the beneficiaries was part of his constituency projects and it aimed at bringing dividends of democracy to people at the grassroot.

The lawmaker representing Olorunda state constituency noted that the beneficiaries were selected based on their need and state of their economy irrespective of their political affiliation and associations.

Hon Adebayo hinted that he had used his influence and contact to secure employment for no few than forty-one youths into the state civil service while thirty-three widows had equally benefited from his empowerment programme.

He said this year the scheme would distribute palm oil processing machines, motorcycles and provision of sets of computers for all police stations in Olorunda local government council to enhance their administrative work and effective crime detention and control.

The lawmaker maintained that the scheme had assisted students of the constituency with bursary to lessen the financial burden on their parents and to place the constituency on the verge of education development.

He said five mini buses would be given to beneficiaries while soft loan would also be given to market women traders and youth as well as artisans to boost their trade and businesses in the next edition of the programme.

Hon Adebayo who submitted that he had been using the opportunity given to him by his people for the service of humanity explained that he had sponsored bills that had direct impact on the lives of his people.

The lawmaker maintained that the present administration in the state had made people the centre piece of his administration hence the need for all political functionaries to complement efforts of government to improve social well being of the people.

He urged people of his constituency to support the present administration in the state in his quest to reposition the state for socio economic development.

Osun Assembly Lauds Aregbesola On Innovation

Israel Afolabi

The State of Osun House of Assembly has charged officials of the Ministry of Innovation, Science and Technology to develop strategy that could revive the economy in the state and transform the state in information and communication technology (ICT).

Chairman, House Committee on Innovation, Science and Technology, Honourable Olaolu Oyeniran gave the charge at a meeting with officials of the ministry, commending the Governor, Rauf Aregbesola for creating the ministry.

According to him, the committee called the meeting to set agenda towards using science, technology and innovation to find solution to some problems in the state.

He added that with the ministry in place, Osun now has the capacity to develop technologically, saying in the present day, it would difficult to develop without technology.

Also, Honourable Ajibola Akinloye urged the officials of the ministry to work as a team because their ministry cuts across all aspect of life.

In his contribution, Hon. Babatunde Olatunji noted that the new ministry will revive our economy in Osun if the officials are effective, saying, “We need to look at other ways to generate income in the state especially on Innovation”.

In his reaction, the Commissioner for Innovation, Science and Technology, Engineer Oluremi Omowaye commended the state Governor for establishing the ministry for the first time in the history of the state, saying the ministry has always been on the move to attract more development to the state.

He said the ministry was already working on solar energy to generate power for the state infrastructure development, just as the state website would be updated and maintained for the use of the people of Osun.

According to him, “We are going to put Technology Institute on their toes because a lot of resources are going there always“, saying, efforts was ongoing to get Zoological Garden at UNIOSUN, Computer Village at Osogbo and while the work is ongoing to secure solar energy at state secretariat and the House of Assembly complex.

He added that it is in the plan to engage and train 5,000 youths on ICT in the state.

Osun Lawmaker Empowers 759 Constituents

A member of the Osun State House of Assembly, representing Obokun State Constituency, Olatunbosun Oyintiloye has distributed farm inputs, and other empowerment materials to farmers and some other residents of his constituency.

About one thousand people including, One hundred and twenty five farmers (125), Sixty five widows (65), Eighty three senior citizens (83) and  four hundred and eighty six vulnerable individuals  (486)  benefited from the empowerment ninitiatives.

Some of the materials distributed were herbicides, cutlasses, farm sprayers, as well as cash gifts and cloths to widows and elderly women among others.

Oyintiloye said the distribution of the materials was part of his gesture to give back to the society and empower his constituents, particularly in the agricultural venture.

He said, the idea behind the distribution of the farm inputs was in line with the government decision to encourage agriculture, saying, “my constituency is made up of agrarian communities and 75 per cent of the residents are farmers”.

“This distribution is as a result of baseline studies of the need of the people in my constituency, materials are not just being distributed, they were chosen after due consultation, who all reiterated my belief that the appropriate empowerment material for my people are agricultural inputs”.

“I am convinced that these materials, with the various supports from the state government would assist farmers in this constituency to increase their yields”, he said.

Oyintiloye then hinted that though, the economy was faced with challenges, but he has resolved to continue to make impacts in the lives of the people in line with the mandate given to him.

He then assured those that were yet to benefit from the gesture not to be discouraged, saying that he would soon roll out similar empowerment programmes for them.

 

Najeem Salaam: Celebrating Honest Broker @52, By Goke Butika

The concept of time is still a work-in-progress, because some of the early thinkers who dwelled on the matter of time were only deploying intellectual arguments. Time is different things to different worldviews.

 

Time to the western worldview is money, because wages are quantified by the numbers of hours put in a job. So, to the western employer, it is time that should be priced not the quantity or quality of work; for it is believed that job description has taken care of the two variables. Whereas, in Africa, if the thought of J. S. Mbiti is given a filtered look, events constitute time; all things being equal, time is still a work-in-progress, because human beings designed to use time to measure their milestones as constituted by events are created in such a way that the philosophical principles of: thesis, anti-thesis and synthesis are work-in-progress too.

 

How time flies? Rt. Hon. Najeem Folasayo Salaam, Speaker, State of Osun House of Assembly is a year older today, and his milestone deserves to be noticed not because he is the presiding officer of the

state parliament, though part of it; the fact that many had occupied the exalted position before him, and certainly legions of people would still occupy the post after him, makes one to relegate transient

position as indelible mark.

 

The question would now be, what makes Speaker Salaam birthday deserving? Then, it would conform to logic to argue that his humility, brilliance and accountability which have formed the core values of his

statesmanship disposition in the discharge of duties his office dictates, is worth celebrating.

 

Born 52 years ago from Ejigbo, Speaker Salaam who was an orphan at the

early stage of life, knew that education is a leveller, and it is the gateway to success in life. As a result of that, he braves all odds to obtain knowledge for the journey of fate, and in the process, he studies political science at Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile Ife, where he bags his first degree; he proceeded to obtain his masters in the same field at the same prestigious citadel of learning and at the peak of being inducted into the hall of

doctoral fellows in the same discipline at the same respected university to which its practicality has shot him to political limelight from the grass of the grassroots.

 

Being a certificated politician, his deft moves in politics with grassroots appeal suggests that Speaker Salaam is a certified politician whose focus is service to the people, and his philanthropy

bears eloquent testimony to the solidity of his acceptance by the people at his remote, immediate and extended constituencies.

 

Speaker Salaam was elected in 2011 by  the Speakers of 36 states of the federation as the national Caretaker Committee Chairman of the Conference of Speakers of the State Houses of Assembly, and the way and manner he fixed the conference of equals before he midwifed it into democratic formation, speaks volume about his democratic

credentials, and leadership potentiality.

 

Not a few are wondering how Speaker Salaam has been coordinating the

parliament since 2011 without hitch, but those who are observing him keenly will agree that his core value: humility,

brilliance and accountability are the attributes deployed to carry along his colleagues in the house. His humility is not pretentious, it appears it is in his DNA, for he believes that success in life lies in

being stooped to conquer, and that all humans are equal before the Creator; his brilliance is rooted in native wisdom and emotional intelligence; his accountability is grounded in open-door policy garnished with collegiate system he upholds in the discharge of his responsibility.

 

It is a public knowledge that Speaker Salaam is a peace maker, and his

effort as go-between in some disputes concerning public institutions,

and his persuasive skill which has made the State of Osun House of Assembly as honest broker, have created an enabling atmosphere for development being witnessed at every nook and cranny of the state.

 

If the attributes mentioned above are worth celebrating as virtues, an individual who exhibits such a character profile should equally be celebrated, and that is the reason why Rt. Hon. Najeem Folasayo Salaam is being celebrated today as he marks his 52nd birthday on earth.

 

Happy birthday Speaking Speaker!

 

Goke Butika

Chief Press Secretary to the Speaker

State of Osun House of Assembly

Najeem Charges New Nominees to ‘Humilty and Service’

The Speaker of Osun House of Assembly, Mr Najeem Salaam has advised the Commissioner/ SA nominees to wear the robe of humility and service.

Salaam made the plea during the screening of the governor’s nominees for the position of Commissioners and Special Advisers at plenary in a speech he titled THIS TREND MUST BE DIFFERENT on Tuesday in Osogbo.

In his word “I am compelled to remind the nominees that are here today about what I had admonished their colleagues yesterday that, we are in a critical mode of social imbalance and tensed economic topsy-turvy, not only in the state, but also in the whole fabric of the nation; suggesting that we need radical minds who could think outside of the box to fix a critical situation like ours.

I alluded to the fact that your job is not envious, because the tea party had long gone, and once again you have my sympathy, because you will have to stretch yourself to get a desired result this time. You have to contend with civil servants who have been piloting ministries in the last two years; you will have to demonstrate capacity to your Principal, and you will have to show the people who are looking up to you the result of your resolve to get things done, all these on lean purse as result of cash-crunch resulting from economic contraction.

Besides, I urge you in your own interest to work with House of Assembly. We shall be glad to help you with the instrument of oversight, and can look into your challenges through our standing committees. We only demand the respect we deserve from you, nothing more, and it should be known to you that we are partners in progress in the development of this state.To cap it all, I advise strongly you relegate the mind of greed, wear the robe of humility and service. It is imperative to treat our people, particularly our party, its leadership and the people with utmost respect, because the time we will return to them for electoral favour is fast approaching. I pray God Almighty will support you in your endeavours”.