By Olowogboyega Oyebade
Do you know that Governor Gboyega Oyetola has completed the preliminaries for the eventual swearing in of thirty five apostles who will serve as Commissioners and Advisers? Unlike the apostles of old who were just twelve appointed by Jesus of Nazareth mainly from one vocation, fishing, and without any gender sensitivity, an omission that which might have induced betrayal by at least one of them, do you know that the new apostles are of diverse vocations including smart and innovative ladies and youth? Do you know that in their selection, the Governor followed a most inclusive and participatory approach that included the party and other stakeholders? Do you know that unlike the apostles of the old who were never trained nor sworn in before they were commissioned into the theological ministry, these new apostles were trained in an intensive training retreat last week under the eagle-eyes of the Governor?
Do you know that they will be sworn in soon during which each member will be given a performance charter to measure relevance to governance? Are you aware that there will be no ranking in the cabinet and that the idea of Commissioner or Special Adviser is merely for administrative convenience? Are you aware that the Governor had reviewed downward the number of Ministries from 23 to 20 to save cost? Do you know that the retreat provided a venue for bonding and team-building? You care to know? Come along.
The statement of the Governor cuts in: “This administration is determined to deliver a State that works… that will enable citizens to live happily and productively, while fulfilling their God-given potential. The administration is poised to continue the running of a wholly empathetic government, whose singular preoccupation is to significantly uplift the well-being of the people of Osun… It is certain that political appointees cannot succeed alone. To succeed, we must work closely with our colleagues in the bureaucracy and forge a shared vision, mission and passion that prioritise the interest of our people and the development of our beloved state above any primordial sentiments.”
Do you think that the idea of that retreat was well-thought? Have you read the work of Dyer? Do you know that he identifies the three challenges of a new team which includes fallacy of formalism as government may assume that educational institutions must have inculcated the needed skills into individual appointees, which might not be so? Do you know that a retreat may prove to be desirable in such circumstance? Are you aware that at school, students are encouraged to work individually and succeed without having to collaborate with anybody and this has not been a common practice in corporate governance? Do you know that a retreat creates bonding and team-building? Do you know that some appointees who might have been working in virtual workplaces in a globalised environment are made to see the import of face to face interaction in a retreat and the essence of bonding?
Do you know that Plato in his book, ‘Symposium’ argues that love goes far beyond simple attraction to human beauty but rather directs the bonds of human society? Do you know that Psychology makes it clear that among the primates in which man is one, life is typically characterised by long-lasting social relationships formed in the context of living in durable social groups, and any such durable relationship is characterised by some degree of bonding? Do you know that it is only bonding that keeps humanity going? Are you familiar with LimerenceTheory of Bonding? Do you know that Limerence theory was posited in 1979 by Dorothy Tennov while studying couples? Do you know that he discovered that bonding is not just all about human romantic relationships and that it can be measured by the amount of limerence or non-limerence each partner contributes to the relationship? Do you know that John Bowlby in his paper, “the Nature of the Child’s Tie to his Mother,”arguesthat affectional bond, sometimes referred to as the emotional bond, is based on the universal tendency for humans to attach, to seek closeness to another person and to feel secure when that person is present? Do you know that the enduring motivation for bonding is the desire to control a pleasantly surprising transformation and to have an emotional base of security? No wonder Plato counsels:
“When love “is directed, in temperance and justice, towards the good, whether in heaven or on earth: happiness and good fortune, the bonds of human society, concord with the gods above—all these are among his gifts”.
Are you familiar with team-building? Do you know that it is made up of activities used to enhance social relations and define roles within teams, often involving collaborative tasks? Do you know that these activities are intended to improve performance in a team-based environment? Do you know that was the essence of the Retreat organized by the Governor to give opportunities to the new team members to allow for role clarification? Do you know that every arm of government and every level must covet smartness in its appointments to meet the competitive edge the situations in the State and country deserve? Why do we need this edge? Enjoy this time-out.
Do you know that the world is at a tipping edge as far as economy is concerned? Do you know that International Monetary Fund (IMF) has warned that global economy faces $19tn corporate debt time-bomb? Do you know that eight leading countries, including US, China and UK are listed as vulnerable? Do you know that this situation may reduce diaspora remittances and Foreign Direct investment into Nigeria and our State? Do you know that it will have adverse effects on commodity prizes, including our crude oil? Do you now see why we need a smart and mobile team that can think out of the box, and be innovative enough to paddle the boat of the State to the harbour of success? Do you know that we all have a larger vision ahead? Do you remember Vision 20:20: 20 of Nigeria? Do you know that the magic year remains just about two months to us? Do you know that in the next two months, our country wants to cascade to 20th economy in the world? Which country is now the 20th economy in the world? Come along, please.
Do you know that according to Investopedia on Saturday 19th October, 2019, the top 20 economies in the World using countries by GDP as updated by Caleb Silver as published on 7th June, 2019 are: 1.The United States, 2. China, 3. Japan, 4. Germany, 5. United Kingdom, 6 France,6. India, 8. Italy. 8. Brazil, 10. Canada, 10. 11. Russia. 11. South Korea, 13. Spain ,13. Australia, 15. Mexico, 16. Indonesia, 18. Netherlands, 18. Saudi Arabia .19. Turkey ,20. Switzerland? Do you know that these economies are the engine of growth in the world and commanding a majority of the global wealth and prosperity? Are you aware that the nominal GDP of the top 10 economies adds up to about 66% of the world’s economy while the entire top 20 economies contribute almost 79% to world economy? Do you know that the remaining 173 countries including Nigeria, together constitute less than 22 percent to the world’s economy?
Do you know that the U.S. has retained its position of being the world’s largest economy since 1871 and now a quarter of the world economy? Do you know that the size of the U.S. economy was at $20.49 trillion in 2018 in nominal terms and is expected to reach $21.35 trillion by December, 2019? Do you know that the U.S. economy is service-oriented, contributing almost 80% of its GDP while its manufacturing merely contributes about 15% of its output? Do you know that despite the fact that China is centrally-planned, it is now popularly called the “world’s factory,” because of its huge manufacturing and export base? Do you know that back in 1980, China was the seventh-largest economy, with a GDP of $305.35 billion, while the size of the U.S. then was $2.86 trillion? Do you know that since it initiated market reforms in 1978, China has seen an economic growth averaging 10% annually, pacing up faster than the United States? Do you know that in 2018, the Chinese GDP in nominal terms stood at $13.41 trillion, lower than the U.S. by only $7.08 trillion? Do you know that by the end of 2019, the gap is expected to reduce to $7.13 trillion, and by 2023, the difference would be $5.10 trillion? Do you know that in terms of GDP in PPP, China is the largest economy, with a GDP (PPP) of $25.27 trillion? Do you know that China has demonstrated that with strong commitment, the fortune of a country can be turned around, from as low as a GDP of $305.35 billion in 1980 to $13.41 trillion in 2018? Can you see stellar bonding and team-building here?
Do you know that Japan is the third-largest economy in the world, with a GDP of $4.97 trillion in 2018 and is expected to cross the $5 trillion mark at the end of 2019? Do you know that the Geography of Japan puts in a place of terrible weather conditions and it continuously, suffers massive earth-quakes? Do you know that despite numerous natural disasters, Japan soars high as the third economy and it is going to host the 2020 Olympics? Do you know that its GDP per capita was $39,305.78 in 2018? Do you know that Germany is not just Europe’s largest economy but also the strongest with its GDP per capita standing at $48,264.01 in 2018? Do you know that its economy is dependent upon capital good exports and giving the threat of rising protectionism and Brexit, Germany has devised another means to bolster its manufacturing strength in the current global scenario and has launched ‘Industrie 4.0’, its strategic initiative to establish the country as a lead market and provider of advanced manufacturing solutions?
Do you know that the United Kingdom that colonized us is still colonizing us in terms of health and tourism as we rush there for medical and social tourism? Do you know that it still keeps a high $2.83 trillion GDP with GDP per capita of $42,558? Have you wondered about what makes UK thick? Do you know that the economy of the U.K. is primarily driven by the services sector like education, banking, health, hospitality, housing and consultancy, all of which contribute more than 75% to its GDP, with manufacturing the second prominent segment, followed by agriculture? Do you know that Nigerians remit billions of Dollars to UK Universities and Colleges every year as school fees? Do you know that an average Nigerian prefers to treat malaria in UK than to patronize local hospitals? Why are we so blest? Do you know that why our elites store their kitchens with food and provisions from the UK , 60% of the U.K.’s food needs are produced domestically, even though less than 2% of its labour force is employed in the sector?
Do you know that the prosperity of France lies in tourism as it is the most-visited country in the world, the third-largest economy of Europe and the sixth-largest in the world, with a nominal GDP of $2.78 trillion? Do you know that apart from tourism, France is a leading agricultural producer, the world’s sixth-largest agricultural producer and the second-largest agricultural exporter, after the United States? Do you know that India is the fastest-growing trillion-dollar economy in the world and the seventh-largest overall, with a nominal GDP of $2.72 trillion? Do you know it has overtaken the United Kingdom (which once colonized it) by 2019 as per the IMF projection? Do you know that India’s post-independence journey began as an agrarian nation like Nigeria but over the years, the manufacturing and services sector have emerged strongly? Do you know that Brazil is the largest and most populous nation in Latin America with a nominal GDP of $1.87 trillion which makes it to be the ninth-largest economy in the world? Do you know that Brazil is bonding with Russia, India, China, and South Africa as part of the BRICS to promote prosperity?
Have you wondered now why Nigerians rush to obtain Canadian visas? Do you know that Canada had displaced Russia to take the 10th spot in 2015 and has retained its position since then? Do you know that its nominal GDP is currently at $1.71 trillion and is expected to touch $1.74 trillion in 2019 and $2.13 trillion by 2023? Do you know that its per capita GDP of $46,260.71 and is ranked 20th globally? Do you know that Russia is the largest country on Earth in terms of landmass but only the 11th-largest economy in the world, with a nominal GDP of $1.63 trillion? Do you know that South Korea which is very small in size compared to Russia is promoted by conglomerates like Samsung and Hyundai and it has secured a prestigious place in the world economic ranking as the 12th largest economy in the world, with a nominal GDP of $1.62 trillion? Do you know that the secret of South Korea is hi-tech and manufacturing? Do you know that it is among the top exporters in the world and presents great investment opportunities, reflected in its ease of doing business ranking?
Do you know that Spain has replaced the United Kingdom to become the second most-visited country in the world, with a huge influx of in-bound tourists? Do you know that Spain remains a major exporter of olive oil, pork, and wine to all countries of the world? Do you know that Australia is the 14th-largest economy, with a nominal GDP of $1.42 trillion? Do you know that the service sector engages 75% of its employed population and contributing 70% to its GDP? Do you know that it has GDP per capita of $56,351.58 in 2018? Do you know that Indonesia is the largest economy in Southeast Asia and the 16th-largest on the global map? Do you know that the World Bank cites its enormous progress on poverty reduction—cutting the poverty rate to more than half since 1999, to 10.9% in 2016? Do you know that the Netherlands is the sixth largest economy in the European Union and the 17th-largest economy in the world? Do you know the secret? Do you know that the Netherlands can boast of its highly mechanized, highly productive agricultural sector, which makes it among the top agricultural exporters globally? Do you know that the Netherlands has a very small landmass and yet it is a major player in the world in terms of trade?
Are you aware that despite the fact that Saudi Arabia possesses around 18% of the world’s proven petroleum reserves and huge deposits of other natural resources like natural gas, iron ore, gold, and copper, it is beaten in GDP by Japan that does not have anything? Do you know that in 2017, it incurred a huge budget deficit, financed by foreign reserves and bond sales? Do you know that it still suffers huge unemployment in 2018 and that foreign workers are not having it easy again? Do you know that hundreds of thousands of Ethiopians in prison in Saudi Arabia were deported because it was increasingly becoming cost-ineffective to keep them? Do you know that Turkey is the 19th-largest economy in the world with $766.43 billion? Do you know that despite political problems in that country, its economy registered a 7.4% growth in 2017?
Do you know that Switzerland occupies the 20th position, a position that Nigeria wants to beat it to the rear, to occupy by year 20:20? Do you know that it has a nominal GDP of $703.75 billion and offers a very high standard of living for its people and parades GDP per capita of $82,950.28? What is the miracle? Do you know that Agriculture contributes only about 1% to its GDP and is home to industries manufacturing clock and watches and pharmaceuticals? Do you know that Switzerland that we pride to depose to rear position, has a booming tourism industry and a strong financial sector with highly skilled and dedicated workforce? Do you know that it has a very stable political system and not a system where every election in every ward and every constituency is challenged in courts? Do you know that Switzerland has strong institutions committed to excellence?
Do you know that according to Trading Economics Global on 19th October, 2019 the GDP of Nigeria by the end of Q4 this year will be $500 billion as against nominal GDP of $703.75 billion posted for Switzerland, leaving us with a gap of $203 billion deficit to catch up with Switzerland in the next three months? Do you know that Nigerian economy is projected by the African Development Bank to be $650 billion in 2020, a figure that is less than the 2019 GDP of Switzerland? Do you know that the GDP of Switzerland has been projected to be $740.7 billion in 2020, $771.96 in 2021, $808.54 in 2022 and $845.38 billion in 2023 when this administration is to wind up? Do you know that the GDP of Nigeria grew at 1.9 per cent in Q2 while the non-oil sector rose 1.64 percent , slowing from a 2.47 percent growth in the Quarter1? Do you know that GDP per capital ranks Nigeria in distant 141st position in the world? Do you know that the average salary in Switzerland is among the highest in the world?
With Nigeria’s GDP projected to be $650 billion by year 2020 and that of Switzerland projected to $740.7 billion in 2020, leaving a balance of $90.7 billion to add up, are we still in the competitive race for 20;20:20? Are you aware that President Buhari presented a record NGN 10.3 trillion 2020 budget to the National Assembly on 8 October,2019 which aims to revive sluggish growth? Do you know that economic activity is seen gaining speed next year amid the ongoing recovery? Do you know that the full implementation of the minimum wage hike and increased credit provision to the private sector are presumed to support domestic demand? Do you know that the border closure to some imported goods is to increase patronage for locally produced food items? Are you aware that this outlook is weighed on by elevated unemployment, high dependence on the oil sector, power shortages, insecurity, and a bleaker global economic backdrop as IMF just warned that the economic outlook for 2020 may be bleak? Do you know that the Central Bank has been doing its best? Are you aware that at its 19–20 September, 2019 meeting, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) unanimously decided to hold its monetary policy rate, as well as all other monetary policy parameters for the third consecutive meeting to stabilize the economy?
Have you heard the news? Do you know the Economist Intelligence Unit has warned that severe instability, interventionism by the Central Bank and government and corruption will be major obstacles to economic development over 2020-24 in Nigeria? Do you know that the forecasts predict that Nigeria will be in a state of near-stagflation as credit conditions are kept tight, partly as a result of exchange rate policies that are artificially keeping inflation high and over the longer-term, a stronger price outlook for oil should see improvements to the macro-economy? But do you know the bad news? Do you know that the Economist Intelligence Unit has predicted that Nigeria will remain well below its potential between 2020-24?
Do you know that there is hope? Have you listened to the speech by World Bank Group President David Malpass delivered at the Annual Meetings held between 16th to 19th Oct, 2019 titled : “Driving Growth From The Ground Up” at the McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada… a University that trained Ernest Rutherford, the father of nuclear physics: Brenda Milner, one of the most important neuro-scientists of the 20th century; John Humphrey, who helped draft the Universal Declaration of Human Rights? Do you know that he spoke about the urgency of growth in developing countries because investment is weighing heavily on the outlook for the rapidly-growing populations in several developing countries, including Nigeria? Do you know that he endorsed the Digital Cash Transfer as the kind of liberalization process we need to launch across the developing world including Nigeria as a way out to set free the poor and improve their lives?
Do you know he disclosed that poverty reduction has made great strides in many countries, yet 700 million people still live in extreme poverty, about one in 12 people on the planet and many of them live in fragile and conflict-torn places in Nigeria, Somalia and other places where institutions may not exist to deliver benefits to those in need? Do you know that digital cash programmes are primed as the only means to reduce vulnerability in these areas? Do you know that he has advocated for creating broad-based growth because global growth is slowing down and currently at 2.6% in 2019? Do you know that Brexit, Europe’s recession and trade uncertainty through protectionism will slower it down more? Do you know that he alerted us of the tragedy of frozen capital as the current financial and regulatory system is producing over $15 trillion in bonds with zero or negative yields, benefitting elite bond-holders and bond issuers but distorting capital flows away from growth and increasing poverty? Do you know that he has recommended strong policy frameworks and robust institutions to allow almost all developing countries to deliver broad-based growth that reduces poverty and allows shared prosperity? Do you know that each country has been advised to launch country’s development platforms to help countries prioritize their key development issues and get development financiers, including non-traditional donors and the private sector, engaged in the most constructive way? Do you know that he suggested that countries need to provide strong leadership to choose a path that works economically, socially and politically? Do you know he noted that development cannot be imposed from outside, country’s leadership and ownership matter?
Do you know that he urged each country to measure the success of Human Capital Index by tracking country’s performance in health and education and tries to improve outcomes, including measuring learning, poverty, proportion of children aged 10 who have achieved functional literacy, the ability to read and understand a simple story to measure broad-based growth? Do you know he recommended that jobs and opportunities should be created across different sectors of the economy and every segment of society to increase the present workforce to grow by 620 million people from 2020 to 2035? Do you know that employment is the best safety net and countries have to address the obstacles to starting a business, as well as to address labour-market demand and supply constraints and enhance opportunities for women and youth? Do you know that he recommended a structural reform to ignite domestic growth by providing electricity and clean water, as well as progress on the rule of law, health, nutrition and education, the full inclusion of girls and women, full attention to the environment, climate and private-sector conditions, and improvements in the government’s spending, tax and infrastructure policies? Do you know that each country has been advised to join Germany in announcing PROGREEN, a fund that will address a range of climate and environmental problems?
Do you know he advised for sound rule of law and debt transparency to attract huge foreign investments? Do you know that when countries are transparent, they typically enjoy higher credit ratings, lower borrowing costs and better ability to attract foreign direct investment? Do you know that transparency helps enhance public accountability and reduce risk of corruption and there is the need to eliminate confidentiality clauses in their lending to sovereign borrowers? Do you know that he has equally recommended transparency, sustainability and effectiveness in public spending and the will to develop more effective and transparent budget allocations, including in specific sectors such as health care, education or infrastructure? Do you know that countries are enjoined to stay focused on the mission to pursue prosperity and to jointly obey Nelson Mandela’s call to “set people free from the prison of poverty”? Do you know that Nigeria and our State need to key to these agenda in earnest, possibly in our quest to catch up with and overtake Switzerland?
Do you know that the State of Osun is rated 14th in Nigeria and Dollar denominated at US$7,280 million? Do you know that Osun is beaten to the rear position by Lagos, Rivers, Delta, Oyo, Imo, Kano, Edo, AkwaIbom, Ogun, Kaduna, Cross Rivers, Abia and Ondo States? Do you know that as Osun is challenged with funds, it has more workforce than some of these more prosperous States? Can you now see why Governor Adegboyega Oyetola and the Party are keen to look for the best hands to make things happen in this new administration to turn poverty to wealth? Can you now see why he has to bring on board the new Chairman of ORS who has put together a new Revenue Football Team with Mr Governor as the Captain playing centre-forward? Do you now know why he has to bring Adebisi Obawale Simeon, IbitoyeAdeniran Felix, Sola Oladepo, AjisefinniAbiodun, Mumini Adekunle Rafiu, OgunfolajuChristianah, Olanibi Segun, Agunbiade Nathaniel, OladoyinOlayinka Folorunsho, Akeju Taiwo, Lawal Azeez Opeyemi, Olaonipekun Henry Olabode, Adeleke Yekinni Adebayo, OlamijuOlasiji, YinusaOlalekan, Isamotu Rafiu, Bola Oyebamiji, OmowaiyeOluremi, Olawumi Jamiu Babatunde, AkandeOluwafemiJimoh, Olawale Babatunde Olumide, Olaniyan Hussein, Adeosun Rasak, Badmus Olalekan Rahamon, Bakare Akande, Latifat Giwa, Tadese Raheem, AdewoleAdedayo, LawalTajudeen, Babalola Idiat, Kolajo Aderemi, Egbemode Funke Adenike, Kareem Ismail Akande, OyegbileRufus and Olaboopo Olubukola Rianat, all on board to play for trophy?
Do you know that this new team is commissioned to lift Osun from 14th position to 1st position? Do you now see why they have to be kitted very well in a Retreat to fashion out the voyage? Do you know that there is no retreat, no surrender in the tasks ahead? Do you know that the blending at the Retreat was awesome and this team is destined to succeed? Do you know that their morale is high? Do you know that they have endorsed the new Osun Development Agenda and they have all promised Governor Oyetola that they will deliver? Do you know that we are good to go and with them, the administration of Mr Adegboyega Oyetola is enough good news? The poem of Wilfrid Scawen Blunt titled “The Desolate City” interludes:
“I rose at dawn, undid the latch of my shutters,
Thinking to let in light, but I only let in love…
Now each creature on earth has his joy,…
Each in another’s eyes finds light,
the light of compassion,
This is the moment of pity,
This is the moment of love