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Glad Tidings: Governor Dapo Abiodun’s New Year Message To The People Of Ogun State

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Glad Tidings: Governor Dapo Abiodun’s New Year Message To The People Of Ogun State

Glad Tidings: Governor Dapo Abiodun’s New Year Message To The People Of Ogun State
January 01
08:58 2022

My Fellow Citizens of the Gateway State,

It is with a heart filled with gratitude to God for the divine benevolence of the past, and a great hope of a more fulfilling new year 2022 that I address you today. This new year address is the third since my assumption of office and I am proud of what we have been able to achieve, as individuals, and together as a State in the last two and half years.

2.The last two years (2020 and 2021) have been most challenging  for humanity, due to the COVID-19 pandemic that befell us in the  early part of 2020. This common enemy disrupted the normal order of doing things in very profound ways like the world has never witnessed

Nonetheless, we pray to witness a new dawn in the year 2022. Our  survival thus far is  also a testament to the indomitable spirit of man to confront and overcome adversities. Though  thestorm may not be totally over, i am convinced the year 2022 will be a much better year for our dear State, and for us as individual citizens.

3.The hope for a  much better year 2022 is rooted in our faith in God and several achievements that your government, our Administration, has recorded since you entrusted us with your mandate in 2019. The steady progression is verifiable with visible projects across our dear State.

4.In my first New Year Address on January 1st 2020, I provided a highlight of our deliberate, focused and methodical approach to the implementation of the Building Our Future Together Agenda of our Administration,  andhow this would be implemented in the five Development Pillars – I.S.E.Y.A.

5. The Administration was then barely six months in office, and during this period we had diligently laid  the foundation for a full roll-out of our Agenda in 2020 and subsequent years. That year’s (2020) budget was this Administration’s first full year budget ,preparedin line with our own vision  for a  life more abundant for the good people of Ogun State. You will recall that the 2020 budget was appropriately named Budget to Build Our Future Together.  

6.However, as fate would have it, in the second month of that year, COVID-19 struck, bringing in its wake disruptions and destructions of monumental proportions to the world. Our country and our dear State were not spared. Indeed, the index case in Nigeria was discovered in our State, at a time the entire world was still struggling to understand the deadly enemy not to talk of how best to confront it. With divine benevolence, the usual proactive and methodical approach of your government, the commitment and selfless efforts of all our first responders, and the support and cooperation of all of you, Ogun State’s response and management of the pandemic were generally applauded and became a reference point.

7.Despite our best efforts – and as experienced worldwide – the pandemic slowed down the pace of the implementation of our programmes. It constrained  revenues, and imposed huge and unplanned expenditures on us, in our efforts to safeguard public health, welfare and wellbeing of our citizens. Above all, our lives and living were modified, resulting in a new normal. Consequently, we had to review the year 2020 budget from N450Bn to N281Bn, in view of the new reality.

8.Notwithstanding all these challenges, our Administration was undeterred. We marched on with an unwavering commitment to the delivery of our  electoral promises and the implementation of our Agenda. Several projects were initiated and completed but could not be commissioned due to the COVID-19 protocols  that restricted the size of social gatherings.

9.Fellow Citizens, a bit of relief from the pandemic was achieved in the  last year, 2021. The virus and its mutations were better understood, new management protocols were identified and vaccines developed. Though all these developments have neither eliminated the virus nor its capacity to spread, but the severity of the infection has been largely reduced for those who have been vaccinated. Our aggressive vaccine roll out has placed us as the  BestPerforming State in the ongoing Mass Vaccination Campaign against COVID-19, according to the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA). All these have led to a cautious increase in economic activities, leading to a measure of economic recovery.

10.Two things are worthy of mention here. Our methodical approach to governance and the solid foundation laid for the implementation of our programmes and projects before the advent of the pandemic. These are largely responsible for the success recorded in socio economic development and several awards we have won in education, housing ,agriculture, information communication technology ICT .

11. These have boosted our steady economic recovery, leading to an unprecedented achievement in Internally Generated Revenue (IGR) of the State.  As at November last year we had generated about  84 billion Naira representing about 80%  of our proportionate budget of our  2021 Internally Generated Revenue . This placed us as  the state with the most improved IGR of 131.5% in the country by half year 2021. We achieved this  withoutoverburdening you, the good people of Ogun State, with unnecessary taxes and levies and despite the pandemic .Furthermore, in a report by the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), we became Number One on the list of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) coming into Nigeria.

12. All through 2021, our dear State sustained the momentum as the Industrial hub and Investors’ Destination of Choice not only in Nigeria, but in the Sub-Saharan Africa.

13. Our dear citizens you are all witnesses to the judicious use of your taxes as manifested in projects, particularly the Transformational Infrastructural Projects.

14. I am delighted to highlight just a few of the projects and programmes that this Administration has been able to achieve in the last thirty months, with your support and cooperation.

15.We have been deliberately aggressive in our Infrastructure Development Programmebecause infrastructure is very critical and fundamental  to all other elements of development and social transformation. We have completed about 287 kilometres of newly constructed / reconstructed roads across the State. A few of these roads that have been completed / commissioned or are awaiting commissioning are:

LUSADA-Igbesa road
Ijebu-Ode-MojodaEpe road
Sagamu-Inter Change-Siun-Abeokuta Road;
Oba Erinwole Road Sagamu
Ray power road Otta
Vespa oritameje road   Ifo
Elite Ake  road Abeokuta
Fajol  Ajegunle road Obantoko Abeokuta
Igan road  Ago Iwoye
Navy Osi Ikola road Otta
Molipa Fusigboye Ijebu Ode
Asafa Oke Asafa Isale Ijebu Ode
Oru Awa Ilaporu road ..Oru
Amongst others ..

These are in addition to over 300 kilometres of  reconstructed /rehabilitated township and rural roads at different stages of completion.

16.Our Infrastructural projects are not limited to roads alone. We promised to provide 2,500 housing units in four years. As I speak, we have delivered over 1,000 units spread across the Prince Court Estate, Kemta, Idi-Aba, Abeokuta; Kobape in Obafemi-Owode;  theKing’s Court Estate, Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta.Others are at different stages of completion in Ijebu-Ode, Sagamu, Ilaro and Otta . The good news is that we cannot seem to build fast enough as the houses are selling faster than we are building.

17.We launched the Ogun State Digital Economy Infrastructure Project (OGDEIP), which aims to  deliver about 5,000 kilometres of fibre optic cable across the length and breadth of the State. This will provide fast, reliable, steady and easily accessible internet connectivity and drive our digital economy.  No wonder we  havealso won  awards as the best in Nigeria in this sector as well .

18.Let me now offer a glimpse into what your Government is poised to deliver in the new year 2022. Just three days ago, I signed into law the 2022 Appropriation Bill aptly christened “Budget of Restoration”. That Document is a representation of our collective aspirations for the New Year

19.Our priority will be to complete and commission all the ongoing projects that we have either initiated or inherited that have direct economic benefits to the people. Some of these projects include Atan-LUSADA-Agbaraexpressway which on  completion,  will represent the most expensive  road project by this Administration. We are proud of that investment because the Agbara industrial Estate, which the road leads to, is the industrial nerve center of not just our State, but also Nigeria and indeed, the entire ECOWAS Sub-region. Amongst  other roads that will be completed and commissioned this year are:

Ilaro-Owode Road Yewa
KemtaSomorin Road Abeokuta
PansekeAdigbe Road Abeokuta
DenroShasiAkute Road Ifo
Sagamu – Iperu-Sapade Road
MolipaFesogboye Road ijebu Ode
Lafenwa – Rounder Road, Abeokuta
Joju Road  Otta
Oke Ola road  Imeko Afon
Aiyetoro Imasayi road Yewa north
Ilase Koko Alare road Ipokia
Muslim College road Ijebu Igbo

Again, I wish to emphasize that this list is not exhaustive.

20.Some of the roads that will receive priority attention by the State  this year  include Ijoko-Akute-Alagbole Road; SiunOwodeRoad; and Ilishan – Ago Iwoye Road. Special attention will be paid to Togbunrin road in  Ogun Waterside and  Ikangba Ilese and Esureroad in  Ijebu East.

Furthermore, the  LagosOtta – Abeokuta road as well as OttaIdiroko road will equally receive priority attention through a partnership agreement with federal government and the private sector respectively .We will  however continue to   carry  out palliatives on the failed portions of these roads to bring succour to our people as  we achieved ahead of the Yuletide period.

21. In addition, the State Government will provide special interventions and support to the Local Government Councils for implementation of identified priority projects in the respective councils to deepen development at the grassroots and complement the State government .

22. Other Transformational Infrastructural Projects that will also be delivered in 2022 include:

The first phase of the OgunState International Agro  Cargo Airport at Ilishan
Improved provision of portable water supply in our major towns and cities through continuous upgrade of production capacity and distribution network. We are introducing community based water supply known as water kiosking, a new initiative that will bring portable water supply to several communities across the State.
We shall be implementing our Public Private Partnership initiatives for power generation. This will Improve  and guarantee electricity supply to our major cities clusters and estates .
The implementation of our Multi-modal Transport Masterplan will commence with our modern  bus mass transit system launch, this will  be deepened and extended to cover all other  modes of transportation applicable in the State ( air ,road ,rail ,air and sea )

23.The Social Welfare and Wellbeing pillar of our I.S.E.Y.A  will also receive a boost. Having delivered over 1,000 units of our targeted 2,500 housing units as at end of 2021, a minimum of 1,000 additional units will be delivered in 2022. In the same vein, we will continue with the on going rehabilitation of primary healthcare facilities and make good our promise of ensuring a functional Primary Health care Centre in each of our 236 Wards.

24. Similarly, our secondary and tertiary health institutions will continue to receive due attention. Specifically, the ongoing rehabilitation and upgrade of facilities at Olabisi Onabanjo Teaching Hospital (OOUTH), Sagamu. This flagship tertiary health facility will also host our new  ultra-modern mother and child hospital through partnership with the private sector ( the AbdulSamad Rabiu Africa Initiative (ASR Africa).  Likewise, the public private partnership agreement in respect of the 250-bed proposed specialist hospital at Oke-Mosan, Abeokuta will be finalized and operationalized.

This month, the rejigged Ogun State Health Insurance Scheme will be unveiled. I am delighted that even ahead of the formal launch, the scheme has recorded significant enlistment of would-be beneficiaries.

25.I salute the enterprising spirit of our market men and women. You are the backbone of trade and commerce. Your government will continue to empower and provide you all the necessary support to make the   new year more rewarding and prosperous for you. In this regard, I have approved the injection and disbursement of additional funds into the Oko’wo Dapo scheme. The scheme has been repackaged to benefit from the lessons and improve on the pilot scheme.  

26.Ogun State Enterprise Development Agency will roll out a number of initiatives in the new year to support our micro, small and medium enterprises, in conjunction with stakeholders in the sector.

27.I am happy to report that we have continued to sustain and improve on our enviable position as the Nation’s Education Capital. The performances of our teachers and students in National and International exams and competitions attest to this. The National Parents Teachers Association have also affirmed this by recognizing the State as the Most Education Friendly. These are not mere happenstances. They are a reflection of our interventions and improvements on infrastructure, welfare and wellbeing of both students and teachers. We have rehabilitated over 900 schools and we  willcontinue to renovate more and provide them with furniture and other required learning tools . We will also continue our intervention , in our tertiary institutions in the areas of funding ,infrastructure and welfare.

28. Let me however warn that any act by pupils, students, parents, and guardians that undermines the conducive environment for teaching and learning will be met with swift and severe sanctions. Our schools and institutions cannot be practice pitches for any form of violence, either against a fellow learner or teachers. Ogun State is renowned for Omoluabi ethos and no one will be allowed to rubbish this proud heritage.

29.In the new year, we will remain committed to the development of the Agricultural Sector. This is because of its multi-dimensional potential for the provision of raw materials for our industry, employment generation, food security, poverty alleviation and wealth creation, amongst others. Today, we can report that about 36,000 jobs have been created through our out growers scheme ,linkageof farmers including youth to Agricultural opportunities ,such as the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) Anchor Borrowers and other intervention schemes. In the same vein, over 40,000 Smallholder farmers have been supported.

30.Two months ago, we launched and activated the Ogun State Land Administration and Revenue Management System (OLARMS), which now makes it possible for individuals and businesses to acquire land online from anywhere in the world. This allows online payments and processes of certificates in record time and reduces significantly  revenue leakages. I am delighted to note its enthusiastic embrace by subscribers.

31. Let me use this opportunity to advise landgrabbers to desist from their unwholesome practices. Whilst Ogun State will continue to provide  a conducive environment for legitimate businesses, including genuine real estate business, we will not tolerate illegal land acquisition.

32.Last year we were adjudged as the most peaceful state in the country, because of the received support and our investment in the new  restructured security trust fund .In our determination to keep our cities, towns and villages safe, we will continue to invest in security infrastructure,   capacity building of our security personnel, whilst also improving on their welfare. Towards this end, we will be re-launching the Operation MESA (OP-MESA) a joint security patrol of the military, police, SSS and other security agencies.

33.For us, government is all about the people, hence our focus will remain on making life more prosperous for the good people of Ogun State. We will be resolute and dedicated to this in 2022. We will work day and night for you and on your behalf .We will not rest until we build a better future together for the coming generations.

To our investors we will continue to ensure the formulation of policies and reforms to provide the enabling environment for you and your investment to thrive  ,as well ease the  ability to conduct business with government and in our State . Together we will sustain our ranking as the investors destination of choice .

34.Let me use this opportunity to thank our public servants and all political office holders for staying the course. Your continued and unalloyed support since we came on board in 2019 has seen us this far. You are the engine room of this government. Without you, it would have been more  difficult, if not impossible, to have recorded the landmark achievements of the last 30 months.

35.Fellow Citizens of the Gateway State, the journey has been tough, and at times, rough. We are standing tall because you continue to lift us up with your prayers, support ,patience and understanding .We remain very grateful. We are forging ahead ,and all hands remain on deck. In the words of the late sage, Chief Obafemi Awolowo: “After the rain comes sunshine; after darkness comes the glorious dawn. There is no sorrow without its alloy of joy; there is no joy without its admixture of sorrow. Behind the ugly mask of misfortune lies the beautiful, soothing countenance of prosperity…”

WELCOME TO 2022! I wish you a more prosperous New Year.

God bless Ogun State! God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria!
Aseyi samodun o!

Igbega Ipinle Ogun, Ajose gbogbo wa ni!

Prince Dapo Abiodun, MFR

Governor of Ogun State

Saturday, 1st January, 2022.

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