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A paradigm for prosperity

By Oteghe Adams
01 May 2017   |   3:06 am
A new economic and political reality is rapidly emerging in Edo State. The people have incontestably proved that citizens’ action, peoples’ power and determination...

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo State

A new economic and political reality is rapidly emerging in Edo State. The people have incontestably proved that citizens’ action, peoples’ power and determination are the most durable and powerful catalysts for societal change.  Edo electorate was unquestionably far sighted in their decision to ensure the fatal termination of the aspiration of the PDP in the September 28th 2016 governorship election. It is perceivable that the voters still bear bleeding wounds from the squandered decade of opportunities and progress under the previous directionless, clueless and ‘do nothing’ PDP government –the memory of the prominent but ignominious role of, Ize Iyamu, as the former Chief of Staff and subsequently Secretary to the State Government under ex-Governor Lucky Igbinedion remains indelibly repugnant to considerable size of Edo people. Thus in resoundingly rejecting Ize-Iyamu as the 2016 PDP governorship candidate, the people wanted to edify a new chronicle  for Edo state in the spring years of the 21st Century ,Edo people wanted a responsive and responsible government and therefore embraced the vision and phenomenon  that was advanced by Godwin Obaseki of APC. One could say by every metric of progress that Governor Obaseki has duly reciprocated the trust that was invested in him by the people-he has responded with gusto and dedication to the call of service without any loss of time.

In fact, Governor Obaseki commenced the construction of tracks for the actualization of the electoral promises on which he campaigned immediately following his inauguration in November.  It was evident from some of the initial executive decision of the governor that his (Obaseki) professional experience in the world of finance and economics, political background and premium of character were crucial capacitors for the activation of the engine of prosperity in Edo State. These were some of the real and intangible capital that the governor brought along with him to Dennis Osadebey House from inception.

There was an unmistakable cohesive theme in the paradigm of societal advancement that was projected by the governor from the genesis of the administration; Obaseki seem to have embodied a vision of vibrant development that was nurtured in the tried and tested understanding of micro policies simultaneously secured within formidable macro foundations. Unlike the unconscionable era of PDP impunity, the citizenry is watching a healthy political process of governance with inclusive and transparent intentions and institutions. This is a new arena where profound ideas and major policy initiatives are adopted only after the question, qui bono, for whose benefit, has been selflessly examined and honestly answered.

Hence for instance, it was not surprising that the administration’s 2017 overall economic plan reads like a study in contemporary classics of stimulating a besieged, quasi autonomous economy in a developing world. Obaseki’s entire agenda is thoughtfully enhanced with metrics for gauging progress-the blueprints for Edo’s progress is highly commendable for its people-centered feature in its overall outcome. There are clearly measured short, mid and long term timelines in the comprehensive Obaseki’s budgetary guidelines for 2017. Among other remarkable features in the document were the six key pillars, or the hexagonal engine of prosperity –the six areas included institutional revolution, new township developments, environmental revolution, social welfare revolution, infrastructure revolution and economic revolution. In the past few months, all the six engines of Obaseki’s governing visions are being simultaneously activated and synchronized for the cherished and anticipated goals. Indeed, since the unfolding of the fiscal plan of action, Obaseki has engendered the vital momentum to accelerate the scientific maturation of the fruits of political and economic democracy for the benefit of Edo humanity.

The government has remained faithfully active in pursing the implementation of its cherished agenda despite the continuing obstruction and obstacles being erected by the PDP through endless electoral litigations. Fortunately the people of Edo State are realistically enthusiastic and responding positively to the administration as the sociology of solidarity between the governor and the citizenry flourished remarkably even through the proceeding at the election tribunal.

From job creation to infrastructural development and reforming education to agricultural revolution, Obaseki is widening the horizon of opportunities for the evolvement of a more prosperous Edo State; the governor is systematically laying today’s foundation for the architecture of the future- the rainbow of a rapidly rising economic power house in the South-South of Nigeria is becoming endearingly apparent.

Quite remarkably, along with various other angles within the orbit of the hexagon of prosperity, the governor continues to courageously pursue the agenda of job creation-this was an idea that Obaseki’s political opponent said was impossible during the campaign. Thus far, the strategic layout in variety of the participatory technical forums initiated by the governor shows a secured road map towards achieving the objective of creating 150-thousand jobs within Obaseki’s first term. Every impartial assessment indicate that the envisaged  clusters of public/private  agricultural and agribusiness  enterprises of the government  will generate about 60-thousand good decent paying jobs- this is the conservative statistical estimate from this single sector alone. The contemplation that was endowed by Obaseki in the agricultural policy arena is emblematic of the technocratic quality and visionary leadership of the governor in all areas of policy initiatives. Understandably, the skeptics and opponents of the governor during the campaign are lacking even the rudimentary capacity to even fathom such job generating potentials-their forte in politics has never included growing the economy and expanding the base for the welfare of the people. The cruel fate of ravenous pillage suffered by such profit-making and employment generating agencies like Bendel Brewery, Bendel Line and Okpilla Cement Factory under the PDP administration is an irreversible indictment in the annals of our history.

Edo State is being steadily awakened from stupor and from what was previously described as a vegetating civil service state-the geo-political entity is rapidly rising to become to a vibrant and formidable agribusiness, industrial and mid-level technological skills exporting region in West Africa. The aggregate potentials of the Gelegele Port blueprint, the rejuvenation of Benin Technical College, the maximization and commercialization of the areas of comparative advantages in agriculture and progressive reforms in education are indestructible foundations for a more prosperous Edo State. A new and historic journey has begun in the geographical heart of Nigeria,this is an opportunity that must not be squandered through diversionary and frivolous electoral litigations of the opposing PDP.

*Adams, a political commentator, wrote from Benin City,