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www.osundefender.org TUESDAY, APRIL 22, 2014 If the much talked about plan of the far from being People's Democratic Party in the state of Osun to perpetrate violence as the election draws closer was real, then they better have a re-think. If the much talked about plan of the far from being People's Democratic Party in the state of Osun to perpetrate violence as the election draws closer was real,

VOL. 9. NO.048

Front Page Comment

fore it's too late for them it's better they make a U-turn from the journey they are planning to embark on because this time around it won't be business as usual for them. Should they go ahead to hatch their diabolical plan as they did in 2007 then they must also be ready to

Osun PDP's plan orgy of violence then they better have a re-think. To have a re-think is a necessity for Osun PDP before they embark on Russian-roulette. Of course any plan to, yet again, embark on what they are best known for; perpetration of violence, will be tantamount to

embarking on a dangerous game with dire consequences for them.Like former President Olusegun Obasanjo - employing a yoruba axiom in his letter last month to President Jonathan rightly said; "the person on whose head coconut was broken may not live to savour the taste of its sweetness". Be

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Who Killed Chief Bola Ige, formerAttorneyGeneral and Minister of Justice?

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Don’t Import War To The West -APC Warns VP Sambo - See Story On Page 2

•Ecstatic pupils milling round State of Osun Governor Rauf Aregbesola (in elementary school uniform) during the commissioning of one of the elementary public schools in the state recently.

Omisore Has Questions To Answer Over Ige – Commissioner

- See Story On Page 14


OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

News

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Don’t Import War To The West - APC Warns VP Sambo By ISMAEEL UTHMAN

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HE All Progressives Congress (APC) in the State of Osun has expressed its rejection of the war intention of the nation’s VicePresident, Namadi Sambo, who declared in Abuja last Wednesday, that the July 21 and August 9 elections in Ekiti and Osun will be ‘a war’ that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) will ‘fight’ to regain the two states at all cost. According to the APC, of war by a government, this is a sadistic declaration on its own people, while it

is also patent evidence that the PDP is the actual cause of the war Nigeria has been having in recent time, including that of Boko Haram. In a statement released in Osogbo last weekend by the party’s Director of Publicity, Research and Strategy, Barrister Kunle

Oyatomi, the APC warned that the PDP should think twice before it imports war to the Western part of the country that has been the most peaceful area since the return of democracy. ‘We reject this war proposal of the VP because it will spell disaster for the

country,” the APC said. The party further cautioned that already, the Federal Government has series of war on its hands, which it has failed woefully to win. “To therefore start a new war on a peaceful people in the West will be biting more than the government can chew, as it will be inviting anarchy,” the party said. The APC reminded VP Sambo that he has enough troubles in his home state in Kaduna, which he desperately struggled to win in a rigged victory against the defunct CPC in 2011. “His chances of winning that state in 2015 are slim, if not impossible,” the party reiterated. “Namadi Sambo should bother more about Kaduna, than scheming for a war in the West. It will be a very unpleasant experience for him and his

party,” the party warned. On the arrow-head the PDP wants to use for its war in Osun, Mr. Iyiola Omisore, the APC described the ex-senator as a politician who lacks electoral value in the state. “For instance, Omisore was comprehensively defeated in 2011 by the youngest senator in Nigerian Senate today, Babajide Omoworare. “In that election, Omisore got 25 votes in his polling booth and he lost his ward and the election to the young senator. Besides, the APC said: “Omisore is not the kind of political personality that can lead any serious political party to electoral victory in the State of Osun.” According to the party, “this is the reason why the PDP has chosen undemocratic option of going to war to win. They will fail,” the party concluded.

Forum Cautions Politicians Against Violence By KAZEEM MOHAMMED •Nigeria Police Force (NPF), Department State Service (DSS) and Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) beating one of the photojournalist, Mr Sunday Omonijo, from Ministry of Information attached to the Office of the Wife of the Governor of the State of Osun at the official commissioning of Ilare Central Elementary School, Ile-Ife, recently. Photo: OSUN DEFENDER.

socio-political group, Osun Good Governance Forum (OGGF), has cautioned politicians against using the August 9 governorship election to cause violence in the State of Osun.

Pan Yoruba Groups Honour Aregbesola Today

In a statement signed by its Coordinator, Adebayo Abagun, in Osogbo on Sunday, the group stated that the current peace, reigning in the state, should not be truncated in the name of election. According to the group, since the assumption of the present administration in office, Osun has been known for peaceful coexistence, saying that the group would rather want a government that would sustain the peaceful atmosphere. He added that rather than engaging in violence, each candidate should come up with programmes and

By KEHINDEAYANTUNJI

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a life of hope.” ONAC stated that Aregbesola has given the entire people in the South West the hope they treasure and the prize they wish to keep. It however noted that as these tremendous transformation goes on, there is a threat from reactionary people to bring Yoruba people down. “This is why all progressive movements in Yorubaland must rise to the occasion of strengthening the blood-bound solidarity that exists between us and

HE governor of the State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, will today, receive Centenary Award from Pan-Yoruba groups, drawn from eight Yorubaspeaking states of the federation. The groups are under the and largely by her garrison auspices of the O’dua laws. Within these stifling Nationalist Coalition, limitations, we express our (ONAC), an alliance of gratitude to the Yoruba several Yoruba groups. leaders that have made the The award, according to best out of the grim ONAC, is in recognition of situation. the role the governor has “We salute their played in the promotion of resoluteness to define the Yoruba heritage. framework for the Dr Mathew Olorunyomi, transformation of our people the spokesman of the from a life of degradation, to coalition, said the award is aimed at demonstrating the blood-bound relationship that exists between the PanYoruba groups and Aregbesola. The groups expected at RS Olubunmi Ayoola, Director, Osun Elementary the event are drawn from School Feeding and Health Programme, has Edo, Ogun, Ekiti, Ondo, stressed the need for active involvement Lagos, Osun, Kwara, Kogi and the Itsekiri area of Delta of primary school head teachers in the programme, tagged: ‘O’Meal’. State. Olorunyomi said: “Since Ayoola, who is also the monitoring of O’Meals 2010, we have seen the State Operations Officer for activities in their schools. government of the people. the programme, made the She said the O’Meal This and many others are call during a meeting with programme had responsible for the peace head teachers of public impacted positively on and stability that the South elementary schools in Ikirun government’s action plan, West and other Yoruba- and Ila zones. which includes banishment speaking ethnic nationality She said the meeting was of poverty, hunger and enjoy today. To be sure, the aimed at strengthening the unemployment, as well as Nigerian institutions have programme and improving promotion of healthy living largely been designed by the the services of the O’Meal and functional education. military to make good food vendors. Ayoola stressed the need governance and utilitarian The director advised all for head teachers to coservice delivery impossible head teachers to be operate and ensure effective or hard to fulfil. of the committed and be more monitoring “This is embedded in the involved in the daily programme to provide the structure of the state itself

genuine leaders like Ogbeni Aregbesola. “It is not about him, but about us as a people. It is about our future and that of our long-suffering children. It is also about the people of Nigeria, who are genuinely desirous of a prosperous life, which they have been continuously denied. “Freedom and progress in Yorubaland, will no doubt, be a blessing to the entire people that live in Nigeria, since there will be crucial and useful lessons to learn,” Olorunyomi said.

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Osun O’Meal Director Tasks School Heads On Monitoring

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By FRANCIS EZEDIUNO

data needed to evaluate it. “Without proper monitoring, all the money spent on the programme will go down the drain,’’ she said. She however lauded the support provided by all the head teachers present at the meeting and enjoined them to be alive to the monitoring responsibility, for the government to realise its vision for the programme. Some of the head teachers said they had been enlightened and encouraged to work selflessly for the benefit of the pupils. “I used to think it was the government’s business to monitor the O’Meal

programme. “ I now know that it is my responsibility as the head of the school to monitor the activities going on in my school,’’ said Mrs. Khadijat Alade, one of the head-teachers. Another head teacher, Mr. Kunle Babalola, said the meeting was an eyeopener for the school heads. “I really appreciate this meeting; it has enlightened us, and for safety reasons, head teachers should be concerned and monitor what their pupils eat. “I appreciate the government for the efforts it is making to make learning enjoyable for both the teachers and the pupils,’’ he said.

policies that can change the lives of the people for the better and allow the electorate to decide freely. “Osun has been known for peace since the assumption of office of the present administration and I believe that that is the tempo we need to sustain. “Everybody has seen that Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s administration has better the lot of the people in terms of developmental programmes and projects in all sectors and these are things we are commending as a group. “Worthy of note is the intervention of the administration on education, which has been commended by the United Kingdom, European Union and many other countries and organisations all over the world. “However, whoever wants to contest against Aregbesola must be able to convince the people of Osun that he can do better in terms of bringing good governance to the grassroots, which we stand for,” it stated. The OGGF then noted that it is ready to work with security operatives to make sure that the August 9 governorship election in the state is free and fair by giving them useful information. It also charged the people of the state to exercise their franchise and stand by their votes, so as to resist any attempt to rig the poll.

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OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Govt Approves Ada/Igbajo Road Tarring – Aregbesola •Charges Communities To Partner Govt On Development

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HE State of Osun Governor Rauf Aregbesola has disclosed that his administration has approved the tarring of Igbajo/Ada road, in its bid to enhance movement of farm produce to commercial centres in the state. He stated this at the 27th Igbajo Day celebration held at Baptist Elementary School, Igbajo. The governor, who was represented by his deputy, Otunba (Mrs) Grace Titilayo Laoye-Tomori, said his administration is focused on enhancing inter-communal peace impacting positively on all communities in the state. He, however, charged the

indigenes and residents of the community that government alone cannot embark on developmental projects in all the communities in the state, hence, the need for partnership with various community development associations to stimulate development and progress. “Development goals require our individual and collective involvement.

They demand that we come together and map out means of fulfilling them. In so doing, we become not only partners in progress, minding the same thing and having common goals for our well-being, we equally strengthen the bond of togetherness, peace and harmony,” he said. This, the governor disclosed, would help facilitate the gain of economic, social, and psychological benefits derivable from working and celebrating together. “Like many other communities, Igbajo has

benefitted greatly from the valuable programmes of our administration in the areas of road infrastructure, school development, healthcare delivery, agriculture, employment opportunities, and security. “Certainly, the Iresi-IrunIgbajo road, which we have reconstructed, is one project that is sure to advance economic activities in this community. “Farmers in this area and in many parts of Boluwaduro Local Government Council Area will find it easier to move their produce from the farms

to the commercial centres, where they can sell. “Four local government roads have also been completed in Igbajo, to complement road i n f r a s t r u c t u r e development,” Aregbesola disclosed. He therefore, enjoined illustrious sons and daughters of the community to remain committed to projects capable of endearing development to the area, while urging them to invest in the development of both material concern and human capacity of the community to propel advancement in the land and among its people. He also called residents of Igbajo and its environs to continue to live harmoniously and work indefatigably for the cause of peace, saying they must not give room to spoilers

and destroyers of the good things to flourish in their land. While acknowledging the support of eminent sons and daughters of the community for the government, he charged the youths to jettison political violence and allow peace to reign in the build up to the forthcoming gubernatorial election in the state. Earlier in his speech, the Owa of Igbajoland, Oba Olufemi Fashade commended the state government for the tremendous achievement in the community, particularly road infrastructure, requesting that the state government should help in the rehabilitation of Igbajo/ Ada road. He also reiterated the call for a violence-free poll in the state, while urging the teeming populace in the community to support government in its bid to turn the state around.

Easter Celebrations: Osun Speaker Advocates Peace, Love By KAZEEM MOHAMMED HE Speaker, State of Osun House of Assembly, Honourable Najeem Salaam, has enjoined Christian leaders and faithful to advocate peace, harmony and love among all men, irrespective of their faith. In his Easter message, he was a lesson for leaders stated that peace, harmony across the corridors of and love are in line with the powers. virtues of Christ and what He stressed: “Christian the Easter period leaders and faithful should symbolises. use this period of Easter to In a statement signed by advocate for peace, his spokesman, Mr. Goke harmony and love among all Butikakuro on Saturday, men, irrespective of their Salaam noted the absence of faith, according to the love and peaceful virtues of Christ. coexistence in the country “These are what the as a result of dirty Easter period symbolises. politicking, greed and “The absence of love and corrupted values between peaceful coexistence in the the political players and country has succeeded in people, have succeeded in pushing the country to the pushing the country to the brink. brink. “We are celebrating He also congratulated Christ and his virtues this Governor Rauf Aregbesola period, but it is imperative and leaders of all Christian for all men and women to denominations in the state draw from the lesson of over the period of Easter, sacrifice bequeathed by the where sacrifice of Jesus Christ, because that is the Christ for the sake of only virtue that could save humanity was extolled. humanity,” Salaam stressed. According to him, this

T •The star prize, a Toyota Camry Car, 2007 model, won by a farmer, Mr Olakayode Johnson and other consolation prizes at Uniq Radio Raffle Draw held at Ilesa Grammar School, Ilesa, last Friday.

27th Igbajo Day: Indigenes Converge For Development

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MINENT sons and daughters of Igbajo on Sunday displayed sentiment towards the development and progress of the ancient community, as political differences were set aside for the welfare of the town. The Baptist Elementary emphasising the need for School, Igbajo, venue of the the crusade to reach more 27th Igbajo Day Celebration, illustrious indigenes, who was filled to capacity as were yet to return home and Igbajo Indigenes at home contribute their quota. Another eminent son, and diaspora converged on Adegboyega the venue to chart a new Barrister course for the development Awomolo (SAN), reiterated that the vision to make of the community. This year’s celebration, Igbajo a haven for indigenes according to the President and visitors is a course of Igbajo Development every son and daughter Association (IDA), Mr Akin must pursue passionately. therefore, called on Majaro, was aimed at raising theHeteeming residents to N100 million to develop the support the present Owa’s Palace and build a administration in the state befitting police station for and should never allow the community. politics to create division He however commended among them for the sake of the contributions of all the future of the community. indigenes towards the In his view, the development of the Commissioner for community and enhancing Information and Strategy in the socio-economic the State of Osun, Mr activities of its dwellers. Sunday Akere, said the According to him, Igbajo selfless effort of all Polytechnic, which is today indigenes towards the known as the first community has been the c o m m u n i t y - o w n e d reason for its continuous polytechnic in the country, relevance among the is a vision of indigenes of Yoruba nation. He therefore, sought the town, who believed in self-help, challenging the more cooperation among teeming youths in the the people in their view to diaspora to rise to the attract development to the challenge of building a virile community, while reiterating the need to involve others, community. He also acknowledged who are yet to be part of the the contributions of various vision to make the dream of social groups in the the forefathers a reality. Also, Prince Gboyega community, while

Famodun assured the community that the indigenes, who have influence in public service would always attract development to the community, adding that the struggle to make Igbajo socially and economically viable is a collective one. Various groups added glamour and glitz to the event, as they displayed Aso-Ebi, vests with inscription, with traditional troupes competing for honour and recognition.

Highlight of the occasion was the performance by Agere Traditional Troupe, consisting of aged women, who entertained the Owa in traditional language, as well as Omode De Troupe, made up of women, mostly in the mid-30’s. Another troupe that thrilled the audience was the Agagan drummers, whose duty was to use their drums to make various chiefs and compound pay homage to the monarch of the community.

Farmer Wins Camry Car At Uniq Radio Raffle Promo By FRANCIS EZEDIUNO

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OTTERY has been described as a legal way of showing appreciation by an organisation to people for their patronage. The Co-ordinator, National Lottery Regulatory empowering their citizens. Earlier in her address, the Commission, Mr. Emmanuel Omotayo, stated this in deputy governor of the Ilesa during the raffle draw, State of Osun, Otunba marking the third (Mrs.) Titilayo Laoyeanniversary of Uniq 103.1 Tomori, described the as FM, Ara Station, Oke-Imo, programme Ilesa, the only private radio unprecedented, taking into station in the State of Osun. cognizance the star prize, Omotayo said there was which was a Toyota Camry a clear distinction between car, 2007 Model. Also speaking at the lotteries and gambling, the State stressing that many event, for developed nations adopted Commissioner Information and Strategy, raffle as a means of

Mr. Sunday Akere, noted that the programme should be seen as a strategy to enhance patronage than promoting gambling. In his welcome address, the General Manager, Uniq 103.1 FM, Mr. Opeyemi Fajemilehin, lauded listeners of the station for their loyalty, promising that the radio station would continue dishing out informative, educative and entertaining programmes. Meanwhile, a sixty-one year old farmer, Mr. Olakayode Johnson from Modakeke went home with the star prize, Toyota Camry, Mr. Olanipekun Akindele won the second prize of a motorcycle and the second

runner up, Mr. Olubona Adegoke also went home with a plasma television set. Mr. Aanu Adegboye from Ilesa went home with the fourth prize, which was a mini-refrigerator., Other consolation prizes were won, ranging from bags of rice, mattresses, pressing irons, GSM handsets, among others. Also present on the occasion were the State Commissioner for Commerce, Co-operatives and Empowerment; Mr. Ismaila Jayeoba Alagbada, Honourable Biodun Awolola of the State of Osun House of Assembly, Managing Editor of OSUN DEFENDER Newspaper. Mr. Kola Olabisi.


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OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Osun PDP's plan orgy of violence continued from pg1

ace the dire consequences of their actions. This is most true and the Osun PDP cannot pretend not to understand the meaning of this witty saying. And for them the consequences will be dire indeed. Thus let them not live with the erroneous impression that they will get away with murder this time as the case was in 2007. Never! It continues to bug the minds of right thinking people why the Osun PDP revels in

perpetrating violence whenever election is approaching. This philosophy of spilling the blood of innocent people in the name of election is anachronistic, uncivilised, ungodly and basically undemocratic. And it basically contradicts the name the party answers. For any party that lays claim to being democratic as PDP's name implies should steer clear of violence. It should have nothing to do with violence. But for Osun PDP the reverse is the case.Whereas it's a known fact that the PDP isn't in the least popular in the state (contrary to her claim of popularity), that it thinks of nothing but

violence whenever elections approach in the state sort of lends credence to two facts; one, that it's not a popular party and two, it's far from being a democratic party. Of course it's basically foolhardy for any popular party and a self proclaimed democratic party for that matter, to revel in unleashing violence on the very people amongst whom it claims popularity. We find this to be purely absurd. The popularity of the incumbent administration and its party isn't disputable due to its sterling performance. Everyday the people of Osun continue to queue behind the governor of the state,

Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola or having demonstrated exemplary leadership. And these facts are known to Osun PDP. They know that the Osun electorate is for Ogbeni but not for them. The eople are not ready to waste their votes as they have tasted two governments and they know Twhichone has genuinely worked for them.hus having performed woefully for eight years, and as the time for another gubernatorial election draws nearer the PDP knows it has no hope in the coming election. And as a desperate party this is why it's planning to start unleashing violence as a way of harassing and intimidating the electorate.

With Osun Guber Polls Knocking I can affirmatively register my profound gratitude and appreciation to the OSUN DEFENDER team for your professional quality and accurate reportage of events and programmes cum unbiased posture. I know full well that this missive shall be treated as usual with the urgency it demands for its publication in your widelyreadwidely-read medium. Permit me to make the following observations which border on the situation of things in our polity and which portend grave implications for our society, especially now that we look forward toward the next rounds of elections in the State of Osun. I have observed keenly the trend of events unfolding during the just-concluded voters’ verification exercise and the ongoing update of voters’ register in the state. Both the concluded and ongoing exercises are organized by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC); so are expected to be thorough and present a masterpiece of orderliness and sanity. Unfortunately, as usual, all other things are not always equal in Nigeria! Once again, the imbalance and inequality in the Nigerian political landscape have come to play once again!

The Independent National Electoral Commission has all over again fallen short of proving its mien and mettle as an organizer of peaceful, free, fair, credible and unbiased polls. That has compelled a question to be poised to my mind: that what is the purpose of holding polls at exorbitant costs if such could scarcely afford the electorate the ample opportunity to make free and deliberate choice of who they

intend to lead them? Why can’t we give the majority the unanimous say to speak through their power of the thumb, that is, their votes? During the just-concluded voters’ verification exercise in the state, there were witnessed in places hiccups and irregularities which nearly marred the exercise. The allegations were rife in places that the voters’ registers displayed had been doctored to favour a political party to the

prejudice of another. All over the state, there were pockets of violence which couldn’t have arisen if INEC had done a thorough job. Sadly, an opposition party in the state, priding itself as the party in vogue at the centre, had gone all out to unleash violence on the people from who they are expected to draw their prospective electorate. It is both unthinkable and disheartening that a political party could hold the entire

people hostage in plain inordinate attempt to bend the people’s collective will into their segmental innuendos. The sad events which formed a build-up to the General Elections of year 2007 in the state are fresh in memory. The events trailing the polls, gubernatorial polls in particular, keep reverberating in our minds. These events are not what we pray to go through all over. Why? They are sufficient to deplete, depopulate and bring a

people down the path of ruins and retrogression. While I make a clarion call on the people to go about their legitimate civic duties without fear of molestation or intimidation, I call on the agents of do or die politics in the state to desist. Parents and wards are enjoined to call their wards to order so as not to fall prey to the dirty, ignoble and dastardly designs of desperate politicians. I also call on law enforcement agencies in the state to be on red alert. As co-umpires with INEC, they are both expected to be unbiased. Attempts to pitch tents with a particular political party against the other would not, at this stage, augur well with our polity. The people have seen well that it is cooler in some places than elsewhere. They should be given the opportunity to choose in their honest majority, where they want their votes to speak in favour. Lastly, I call on voters not to exercise apathy of any kind. Nigeria is our collective heritage, and we owe her the civic duty to shape her destiny. It shall be well with our Nation. We will prosper within it. Osun a dara o! •SEYI OLADUNJOYE, Oke-Odo, Oyan, Odo-Otin LGA, State of Osun,

But it's important to let the PDP know that its vicious plan is dead on arrival as the security agents in the state will not fold their arms and watch anybody to disturb the peace that has found abode in the state of Osun since the inception of Ogbeni's administration. We will not advise the good and peace loving people of Osun to engage in violence with PDP hooligans because two people cannot be mad at the same time. Thus whenever the PDP rascals and their sponsors start or want to starttheir madness, our people should immediately report to the security agents in the state whom we trust will perform their duty accordingly.

The law is there to deal with anyone who is out to perpetrate violence. And we appeal to our security operatives not to compromise the peace in the state. They must deal decisively with agents of violence, and without mercy too. For the political thugs whom sponsors of violence want to use to perpetrate their planned heinous act, the advice by the Honourable Speaker of the House of Representatives, Aminu Tambuwal will suffice; "tell politicians who want to use you for political thuggery to bring their children to lead it". Half fa word, they say, is enough for the wise.

OSUN DEFENDER Publisher

Moremi Publishing House Ltd.

Managing Editor

Kola Olabisi (0803-392-7286)

Editor

Kayode Agbaje (0803-388-0205)

Lagos Editor

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Senior Reporter Senior Reporter

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OSUN DEFENDER is published by Moremi Publishing House Limited, Promise Point Building, Opposite Guarantee Trust Bank GTB, Gbongan Road, Osogbo, State of Osun. All correspondence to the above mail address. ISSN: 0794-8050 Telephone: 0803-392-7286, 08033880205 Website: www.osundefender.com/index.php e-mail: osundefender@yahoo.com


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Infrastructure OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Ona Baba Ona In The State Of Osun

Counting The Costs; Celebrating The Benefits Recently, the Rauf Aregbesola administration rolled out the drums to officially commission its first batch in the long list of multiple road infrastructure projects so far executed during its stay in office, now spanning almost three-and-a-half years. The epoch-making occasion, held in the ancient city of Ilesa, opened the line-up of delivery of new road projects encapsulated in the SixPoint Integral Action Plan rolled out by Ogbeni Aregbesola and his irrepressible team at the inception of their election campaign almost eight years ago. Tagging the delivery of these road projects as a promise kept would therefore not sound exaggerative or inappropriate. There is hardly any other time as appropriate as now to make a longer list of roll-call of the seemingly endless list of road projects initiated by the administration in the State of Osun. NIYI OLASINDE takes the plunge into that adventure.

•The governor, State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola (2nd right); his deputy, Otunba (Mrs) Grace Titi Laoye-Tomori (3rd right); Special Adviser to the Governor on Works, Engineer Sabitu Amudah (3rd left); Director, RATCON , Engineer Dany Mikhael (right) and other dignitaries during the official commissioning of fifteen roads in Ilesa township by the governor, recently.


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MAGAZINE

OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Counting The Costs; Celebrating The Benefits

•An asphalted road at Amuta, Ilesa under the administration of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola. Contiuned from page 5

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OADS and infrastructure now deserve our repeated focus and emphasis. It would be recalled that by the end of the time of the immediate past administration in office, the voice of OSUN DEFENDER Magazine was vehement over the state of disrepair in which virtually all roads in the Osun State of the time were. We remember vividly that most access within the metropolis of Osogbo, the state capital had become erosion paths and courses for drainage. The administration of the time, both at state level and local government tiers were simply there doing nothing. Their functionaries were busy siphoning funds from public accounts; while the situation of our roads worsened. Many of the roads were plunged into such state of disrepair that they ceased to be motorable. Even as state capital, all access roads linking Osogbo with other states were not dualized. The administration of the time excused itself on the premise that those inter-state roads are federal roads; even as it was the ruling party at the federal level, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) that held sway in Osun, the concessioning deal could not be sealed by governments at the two levels. The only one so concessioned was the Akoda/Old Garage/Ikirun/Ila-Odo/Erin-Ile, Kwara State Boundary road; which was billed for reconstruction in two phases. Unfortunately, the administration spent its entire years in office on only the first phase of that road; the stretch from Akoda to Old Garage. It is the Aregbesola administration which is of another party that is now carrying out the reconstruction of the other phase of the road. Even the first phase constructed by the Oyinlola administration cannot be certified as fully constructed. It was haphazardly done! The road had begun to have trouble spots long before its purported completed completion. It is placed on record that the road project commenced by the immediate past administration in the state was brought up to standard and eventually completed by the Aregbesola administration. If it is possible or rather expedient to accord an area of specialization to an administration; then it would not be exaggerative to pin-point road project as the major area of specialization of the incumbent administration in the state. In virtually all parts of the state, road projects measuring various lengths of kilometres have been initiated since the commencement of the administration’s tenure of office in November 2010. These toads have today reached various levels of completion, while many that have been completed are either awaiting delivery or commissioning. In addition to these, various local government road projects have been constructed by the thirty (30) local governments in the state and the Ife East Area Office. Few months ago, upon the fresh re inauguration of the executive secretaries of the local government councils for the last lap of their time in office, the governor charged them how important it is for them to take the construction of the 10-kilometre road project in their respective council areas serious; amidst other indices of good governance. The State of Osun Urban Renewal Project of the incumbent administration, which entails the reconstruction of roads in and modernization of ten kilometer radius of

city centres in nine major cities in the nine zones of the state, is already in progress. The cities are Osogbo, Ikirun, Ila Orangun, Iwo, Ede, Ejigbo,Ilesa, Ikire and Ile Ife .Osogbo, as he state capital shall have two city centres: Oja Oba/ Palace area and Old Garage. The city centres shall be provided with good modern amenities like post offices, police stations, recreational centres, parks and gardens, eateries and the likes to give the places the desired face-lift that shall make them conform to modern-day standard of cities. Apart from these efforts, episode of the several Federal Government road projects are currently ongoing in the present-day State of Osun. This has been made possible through the process of concessioning. The rumour making the rounds amidst a segment of the people in the society is that the roads are federal roads and so, none else could wield the magic wand of reconstructing such roads except the “Almighty” Federal Government; more so, when such roads are being dualized. The source of this rumour is not hard to discern. The governor of the State of Osun during one in the list of episodes of live audience participation programme, a brainchild of the incumbent administration branded “Ogbeni Till Daybreak” did not mince words while responding to a pool of questions fielded, which were related to this kind of insinuation. His response was that if an administration which was led ad powered by the ruling party at the centre (referring to the People’s Democratic Party - PDP); and which stayed in office and held on to power for an upward of eight years could not reconstruct Federal Government roads within its area of jurisdiction; then it could not be true that an ousted administration or a Federal Government that had been hitherto co-plagued by inertia could now come back to do the reconstruction. The fact of the matter is contained in this analogy, that if you refuse to take care of your own house, premises or vicinity; it will be vain wish to expect someone from the neighbourhood to come and take care of it for you. This analogy depicts the mindset which governed the resolve of the incumbent administration to seek the concessioning of all Federal Government roads in its vicinity and get them rapidly transformed into well-dualized and macadamized roads. In Aregbesola’s opinion and feeling, it is shameful to observe that all access roads leading to the State of Osun from adjoining states are narrow, single-track roads. Osogbo in particular as the state capital has been bereft of good roads; which cause frequent traffic congestion in the metropolis. It is on record how OSUN DEFENDER Magazine had frequently bemoaned the sorry sight of poor access roads in the state. Today, work is earnestly in upper swing in getting reconstructed the Osogbo/Ila-Odo/Erin-Ile, Kwara State Boundary road. It is expected that the completed road shall be delivered before the middle of next year, 2014. This assurance was further affirmed recently by the State of Osun Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Honourable Sunday Akere, while responding to questions bordering on completion and delivery of multiple projects embarked upon by the administration of Ogbeni Rauf

Aregbesola. The contract for the reconstruction of Osogbo/ Iwo/Ibadan Road; also a dualization project has been awarded and work has started on the road project. Not only these, work on the Gbongan/Orile-Owu/Odeyinka/ Ijebu-Igbo, Ogun State Boundary road has reached an advanced stage – also a contract awarded by the incumbent administration. Gbongan/Akoda end of the Gbongan/ Osogbo Expressway is also not left out of the massive reconstruction in roads, currently ongoing in the State of Osun. Work is also going on, on the construction of Igbajo/ Imesi/Ekiti State Boundary road. The Gbongan/Orile-Owu/ Odeyinka/Ijebu-Igbo, Ogun State Boundary road is important as it provides a shortcut to cosmopolitan Lagos State without having to go through the unnecessary headache of traffic congestion which is the normal feature of Ibadan/Lagos axis. Already, the Ikirun/Iree/Ila-Orangun road project has been completed. There are other road projects currently going on in the State of Osun. Within the metropolis of Osogbo the state capital alone, practically all the inner access roads have been reconstructed. These roads are damn too numerous to mention. Of recent, the East Bypass, stretching from Ido-Osun end, through Isale Osun/Ita Olookan bursting out at Ikirun road had its contract work awarded and work has commenced in earnest. This is not to talk of the work that is ongoing at the Old Garage Area of Osogbo, which, apart from being a work of beautification, is intended to make that heart of the city more spacious, healthy and more befitting. The West Bypass, popularly referred to as Ring Road, constructed by the Alliance for Democracy (AD)-led administration in the state is currently witnessing a facelift. We have so far done justice to events and happenings in the Roads and Infrastructure sub-sector of our state. We were able to bring out the revolutionary transformation already recorded in that sub-sector up till the point of this eve of the termination of the administration’s first tenure in office. We now deem it most convenient to forge ahead at the exact point where we paused. Apart from the entire massive road projects mentioned as monumental achievements of the “Government Unusual” of Ogbeni Aregbesola, there are still left more road projects which constitute the full list of difference as at date, between his administration and that of his predecessors. Our exact stopping point was where we were considering the ongoing local government road projects in the State of Osun, measuring ten kilometers at a go. During the time of the ousted administration in office, little of nothing was found on ground with regards to the Rural Access Mobility Project (RAMP). This was even as the project is a collaborative effort between the Federal Government of Nigeria and the World Bank. In spite of the fact that that ousted administration was controlled and run by the same party that held sway at the centre, the People’s Democratic Party (PDP); the State of Osun did not fully access this facility which was provided with the auspicious intent of opening up of our rural areas to urban centres for the purpose of accelerated industrial growth and all-round Contiuned on page 11


OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

PHOTOTALK

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Faces At The Opening Ceremony Of All-Comers Colloquium Tagged:- Fundamental Imperatives of Cohabitation: Faith and Secularism, At The Centre For Black Culture And International Understanding (CBCIU) Auditorium, Abere, State Of Osun, Recently.

•(L-R) The governor, State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola; Chairman, Centre for Black Culture and International Understanding (CBCIU), Professor Wole Soyinka; Director, Development Policy Centre, Ibadan, Professor Bimpe Aboyade and Deputy Governor, Otunba (Mrs) Titi Laoye-Tomori, during the Opening Ceremony of All-Comers Colloquium tagged: Fundamental Imperatives of Cohabitation: Faith and Secularism, at the CBCIU Auditorium, Abere, Osogbo, State of Osun.

•Aregbesola (4th left); Titi Laoye-Tomori (3rd left); Professor Soyinka (4th right); Deputy Speaker, State Assembly of Osun, Honourable Akintunde Adegboye (2nd left); Professor Aboyade (3rd tight); Chief of Staff to the Governor, Alhaji Gboyega Oyetola (left); Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor, Mr Gbenga Adebusuyi (right) and Major Debo Basorun (2nd right), during the Opening Ceremony of the colloquium in Osogbo, recently.


OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

PHOTOTALK

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Free Train From Lagos To Osogbo For Easter Celebration Organised By Governor State Of Osun, Governor Rauf Aregbesola, Last Friday. Photo: GBENGA ADENIYI.

•A cross section of passengers waiting for free train at Ido Terminus, Lagos.

•Some of the passengers struggling to board the free train.

•Another cross section of passengers at Mushin terminus boarding the free train.

•Another cross section of passengers in Abeokuta terminus boarding the free train.

•Another cross section of passengers in Ibadan terminus boarding the free train.


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PHOTOTALK

OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Turning Of Sod Ceremony For The Construction Of An Ultra-modern Central Abattoir Photo: GBENGA ADENIYI. At The Project Site In Osogbo, Recently.

•(R-L); The governor, State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola; his deputy, Otunba (Mrs) Grace Titi Laoye-Tomori and Secretary to the State Government of Osun, Alhaji Moshood Adeoti during the turning of sod ceremony for the construction of an ultra-modern central Abatoir at the project site in Osogbo recently.

•(L-R) The Olufon of Ifon-Osun, Oba Abdurauf Magbagbeola and the Ataoja of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Olanipekun on the occasion.

•A cross section of dignitaries at the event.

•A cross section of traditional chiefs at the programme.


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PHOTOTALK

OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Chief Ebenezer Obey Supported State Of Osun Governor, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola’s Re-election In Ilesa Last Thursday.

•Nigerian Juju Musician, Chief Commander, Ebenezer Obey-Fabiyi (left) the presenting copies of CD album titled: “Aregbesola: Agent of Change” to the governor, State of Osun, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, to support his re-election campaign in Ilesa, State of Osun, last Thursday.

•Aregbesola (middle) displaying a copy of the CD album titled: “Aregbesola: agent of Change” presented to him by Ebenezer Obey-Fabiyi (left) on the occasion while his deputy (right) watches with admiration.


MAGAZINE

OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

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Counting The Costs; Celebrating The Benefits Contiuned from page 6 development. Readers would agree that little or nothing could be achieved in the area of activating the industrial drive of any administration or even developing its agricultural policies without developing road infrastructure to the fullest. It is with pride that we place on record that the Rauf Aregbesola administration has since inception been pursuing all Rural Access Mobility Projects (RAMP) approved for the state faithfully and assiduously. This is to the extent that barely a year into the lifetime of the administration, over 500-kilmetre roads in the category of Rural Access Mobility Project (RAMP) had been constructed in the state, under the execution and supervision of the incumbent administration. This trend came, regardless of the fact that the administration of the state today is in the hand of a different party, the All Progressive Congress (APC). About mid-2013, it was in the news that another batch of these RAMP roads was approved for selected states of the federation. The glad part of that news was the inclusion of the State of Osun as part of four or five benefitting states. With this trend of events, our state is certainly on its fast-tracked surge to the top among comity of states, especially, in terms of access to farmlands as a way of boosting agricultural productivity, industrial development and overall good living of our people. Since that first frantic step was taken at the inception of the administration, the Government Unusual of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola has been impacting positively on the lives of the citizenry of the state in many diverse ways; most especially, in the area of provision of road infrastructure. Till date, the Rauf Aregbesola administration has not relented in its efforts at bequeathing the legacy of good motorable roads to all nooks and crannies of the state. Apart from the many roads which have been completed and instantly put to use, many other road projects subsist at various stages of completion, and which await official commissioning at any date from hence. OSUN DEFENDER Magazine shall at this stage shift focus to the in-depth consideration of these numerous projects so as to serve as documentation and reminder for all, to attest to the fact that that the administration is working. We now turn to the apt consideration of these numerous road projects. •Igbonna / Ago Wande / Oke Onitea / Winners’ Chapel / Ring Road Project HIS road project, inherited by the administration of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola from the immediate past administration in the state, was at inception time of the administration at the state of abandonment, neglect and disuse. As a matter of fact, tongues were wagging that the road project and the possibilities of its completion had become a farce. That was even as it became glaring that the fund for its construction had been released, either in part or in full to the contractor in charge of the work. It was startling and stunning to find the contractors of the project fully mobilized back to site. The road was constructed up to the stage that it was macadamized, with the culverts, bridges and drainages properly fixed, at least to make the road reasonably motorable. This same road it was that was jocularly handled by the erstwhile Governor Olagunsoye Oyinlola during one of the latter editions of his monthly audience-participation propaganda programme, branded Gbagede Oro. One particular complainant had approached the governor with a plea for the completion of that particular road project.

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•AREGBESOLA: Governor, State of Osun

Specifically, the complainant dwelt on the bridge over the stream at the precincts of C.A.C. WOSEM; which he complained that apart from its impassable nature, was so narrow that it could not take two pedestrians at a go. To this complaint, Oyinlola only replied with his usual jestive candor when he said “akuko Mecca ga to bayii; alhaji e re e le…” meaning that it was an exaggerated. That was all! The road was never fixed till his unceremonious ouster from office. Upon the assumption of office of the Aregbesola administration in November 2010, work resumed on the project, and it was brought to completion before Christmas time that year. The first test of the usefulness of the road came during the Christmas festivities of 2010; precisely on the Christmas Eve on December 24, when due to traffic congestion on all access roads (all of which were then in a terrible state of disrepair), the road under consideration came to the rescue of motorists as the only escape route to the West Bypass (popularly called Ring Road). Since that time, it became clear that if all other linking roads in the state capital could be fixed, the problems and challenges of traffic congestion would have been flung overboard. The case of this road is just only one instance among similar ones which were reopened by the new administration of Ogbeni Aregbesola all over the State of Osun. Today, all the roads have been made perfectly motorable. •Olu Alabi / Anaye Market Link Way HIS road was totally in a state of disrepair at the time of the inception of the incumbent administration. The situation of the road was worsened by the presence of a bridge which had cut off; thus making smooth crossover difficult for pedestrians, not to talk of motorists. Residents of the area, especially those who were mobile with one mode of transportation or the other did not find the situation amenable at all. The drainage situation of the area was an eyesore. There were no clear-cut drainages at the road ends. To worsen matters, the supposed gutters and beds and banks of the stream which criss-cross the area became refuse dumping grounds for residents who could not find any better alternative for their refuse disposal needs. Because of this prevailing situation, the area became perennially flood and erosion-prone; as fortunes of property and several lives were lost to the annual recurrence of erosion torrents. One sorry sight in the area, which deserves mentioning, was indiscriminate defecation along the adjoining railway and its sides. The identified cause of this practice was the absence of toilet facilities in most residential houses, market stalls and complexes which dotted the area. This unhygienic practice has become a thing of the past today, via the proactive intervention effort of the Aregbesola administration. Time and again during the time of the fiery siege, the searchlights of OSUN DEFENDER Magazine beamed on the ugly spectacle presented by this very area and the untold hardship which its residents were made to undergo. The disastrous floods of 2009 and 2010 in particular still remain fresh in our memories; as we reckon that the horrible experience is not what the residents of the area could forget in few years to come. Today, the wave of Rauf Revolution has beamed to that area of the Osogbo Metropolis; not only in the area of road construction, but also in the area of environmental sanitation. The area under focus is exemplary of good sanitation practice today. The road and drainages are now

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perfectly well fixed. Aside this, the road is a shortcut from the earlier-mentioned one; and it also serves to avert unnecessary traffic congestion. Again, this good work came, courtesy of Ogbeni Aregbesola’s administration in the State of Osun. •West Bypass a.k.a. Ring Road HIS road had been in existence since the time of some military administration in the state. It was however brought to the present level of conceptualization by the administration of Chief Bisi Akande. The road, stretching from the Mobile Police Headquarters Junction /rare of Osogbo City Stadium to link the Osogbo-Iwo Road at Dele Yessir area spans between 15 and 20 kilometres. It also presents a stretch of good motorable road to motorists who intend to avoid the hustle-bustle of the township traffic. This, to a large extent, serves to reduce traffic congestion of the state capital. Before the coming on board of the incumbent administration, the purpose of constructing this road had been almost defeated, as various forms of illegal structures had begun to litter both sides of the road. Being a new road, various forms of workshop had occupied the roadsides and junctions. As if these activities were not enough, many residents of the metropolis found the patches of bushes at the edges of the road as ample refuse dumping ground. Activities of some motorists, especially the trailer drivers were also contributing to the deteriorating condition of the road. Burning of tyres on the road, especially at nights, with a view to draw attention of other road users to damaged vehicle spots, contribute to damaging the road. Also, other human activities like human defecation, gathering of earth and sands for building projects and selling to tipper operators and indiscriminate mounting of kiosks, stalls and other forms of movable structures for commercial activities contributed to unnecessary rapid congestion and overcrowdedness along the road. Incursions and trespasses were made into the road boundaries/limits in an indiscriminate fashion. To cap it all, the street lights installed by the immediate past administration were just like mere decoration poles adorning that stretch of road. They never really provided light at night. Thus, the stretch of road provides ample hideouts for hoodlums, gangsters and criminals to carry out their nefarious activities under the guise of nocturnal darkness. Today, all these anomalies are being radically addressed. Potholes and other accidentals which constituted persistent causes of road carnages are being fixed and incidences of carnages are being reduced to the barest minimum. The roadsides are being prepared for ornaments, while the street divides too are being prepared for the same purpose. The street lights are also made functional as the road is now well-illuminated at nights. Also, designated bus stops and pedestrian walkways are being planned for construction along that road. •Bisi Bamikole Road / Owoeye / Apostolic Faith / Pepsi Cola / Obelawo Axis HIS stretch of intercity roads links Oke Onitea with Omo West Area of the city. It provides another veritable shortcut to count down on unnecessary traffic congestion and aid easy, smooth human and vehicular movement within the state capital. Before the intervention of the Aregbesola administration, the stretch of linkways was in a horrible state. The roads were a persistent source of chronic headache for pedestrians and Contiuned on page 12

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•LAOYE-TOMORI: Deputy Governor and Commissioner for Education


MAGAZINE

OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

12

Counting The Costs; Celebrating The Benefits

•Another completed road at Oke-Opo, Ilesa under the administration of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola. Continued from page 11 motorists alike. As has been mentioned for other roads earlier in this report, the roads included in this segment were also plagued with sanitation challenges before the administration of Ogbeni Aregbesola came up with its various intervention efforts. The absence of defined drainage facilities made the areas prone to water erosion and flooding to the detriment of residents. Also, residents were in the habit of indiscriminate refuse dumping. Indiscriminate defecation and emptying of sewage waste on the road were habits which had eaten deep into the fabric of the people. Upon the approach of the intervention efforts of the Government Unusual, people were most prevalently pessimistic that the intervention would be pervading enough, especially, as the guise in vogue, which was the poser used by the previous administration was that the state was cashsqueezed; being a civil service state. But the pessimists were dumbfounded eventually, as the incumbent administration has, by its performances beaten the wildest imagination of all the people. Not only did the intervention efforts see to the fixing of roads, but also the gutters and drains were fixed. The sanitation needs of the entire area have also been attended to promptly. The area today is a masterpiece of decency and good habitation. ·Oke Fia / Alekuwodo / Olaiya Junction THIS road was initially constructed by the first military administration of Colonel Leo Segun Ajiborisa in the state. Subsequently, it received facelift from the first and second civilian administrations of Alhaji Isiaka Adeleke and Chief Bisi Akande respectively. Still, the road appeared like that of a glorified rural settlement. Its overriding importance, apart from the fact that it is situated in the heart of the state capital, is corroborated by the fact that almost all workers making it to the state capital from Iwo, Ilobu, Ejigbo, Ede and other axes of the state; even Ikirun/ Ila Orangun axes, en route Ring Road must pass through this road for one reason or the other. This road is therefore a crowd-puller, sort of. It is in apparent recognition of the foregoing fact that the administration of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola picked interest in the refurbishment and rehabilitation of the road to make it more effective and more useful to the teeming populace. Long before now, efforts had been made by previous administrations in the state to decongest the road, especially by attempting to relocate the Alekuwodo Market, but these were all to no avail. Along the line, another market sprang up there. This was a market in building materials cum sawmill and plank market. All these compounded the problems associated with

the congestion of the area. There were two additional challenges closely knit to these afore-mentioned ones on this road. The first was the problem of poor channelization of drainage and water canals; while the second is the encroachment on the land acquired for use by the Nigeria Railway Corporation. Closely woven to the former was indiscriminate erection of building structures on waterways and its attendant disasters of perennial flooding; causing wanton destruction of lives and property. All these calamitous situations have been reversed by the Government Unusual of Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola within the space of three years of its dominance on the landscape of politics and governance of the State of Osun. First, the markets have been relocated with consummate ease; and without harm, injury or prejudice to affected traders. Secondly, the affected buildings on waterways have been demolished, with due compensation paid to affected property owners. Thirdly, proper channelization of canals and waterways has been carried out. These measures have helped to forestall the calamities associated with water flooding, erosion and the attendant annual disaster of destruction of lives and property. Also, the problems associated with congestion, which adversely affected human and vehicular movement have been averted. Above all, the Oke Fia / Alekuwodo / Ola Iya Junction Road has today been rehabilitated. This has been so well one that what remains of the popular Alekuwodo Market has been fenced out from the road. The plank cum building materials market has been relocated elsewhere. The road today is so widened that there are enough tolerances for pedestrian walkways, bus stop stalls/ sheds, roadside drainages and ample fencing of residential and shopping buildings from the main road. This has so much eased tension of traffic in the axis that Alekuwodo is now an envy of all in the city. The sanitation needs of the area having been promptly attended to, the residents are today heaving sighs of relief, as they have been salvaged from the disastrous fangs of flooding and water erosion. In addition to this, the rod is now well lit to make nocturnal traffic and security easy and smooth. •Orita Sabo / Orita Elelede / Igbonna / Owode / Oluode HESE networks of roads were not so good at the time of the ascension of power of the incumbent administration. As their major features, they were too narrow and devoid of drainages for easy flow and passage of erosion water. Few kilometres down the Orita Elelede axis down Ahmadiyyah Junction down to Obalende could be found the ever-

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troublesome River Gbonmi, which was a perennial cause of water flooding. The roads today have been fixed, with deep and wide drainages. Also, the roads are wide enough to allow for convenient roadside parking spaces for motorists. We need to emphasize it at this stage that the roads constructed so far are solidly made of asphalt and limestone dust to ensure durability. The emphasis and philosophy of the incumbent administration hinge on construction of durable roads that would be able to stand the test of time. In addition to ensuring this, the administration has, for the first time in the annals of the state, established the State of Osun Roads

Maintenance Agency (OSROMA) which is intended to see to ensuring that the roads are kept in good conditions at all times as well as ensuring that they are not willfully damaged through actions and inactions of users and residents on various guises. •Orita Gbaemu / Isale Aro / Our Lady of Saint Francis Axis Road THIS road was in a deplorable state before the emergence of the administration of Ogbeni Rauf Adesoji Aregbesola in the saddle of governance in the State of Osun. That stretch of road was not wide enough for two vehicles to share at the same time. As the case was Continued on page 13

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MAGAZINE

OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Counting The Costs; Celebrating The Benefits

•Governor Rauf Aregbesola leading the State Executive members to inspect the 15 Ilesa Township Roads before the commissioning in the State of Osun, recently. Continued from page 12 with almost all the so-called roads in the state, the road was also devoid of drainage cum sewage system. Since two oncoming vehicles could not make too convenient a use of the road, it is needless to recount the predicament which pedestrians would be facing during their daily hustle-bustle and toil on the road. It is this road that the administration of Ogbeni Aregbesola rehabilitated as one of its earliest projects upon assumption of duty. One major importance of the road is its location that is close to the heart of the town and the ample kink it provides with important locations in the city. For instance, the link it provides with the king’s palace, the shrine of Osun river goddess, major first-generation churches and some crowd-pulling state-of-the-art schools places the stretch of road in a place of high prominence. We also reckon that the presence of the headquarters of Osogbo Local Government at Oke Baale; the Main Campus of the multi-campus State University at the same Oke Baale; and the exit to Ijesaland through Oke Ijetu requires proper alternative route which the link this road provides with Odi Olowo affords. There is no gainsaying the fact that the Aregbesola administration took adequate and abundant care of this road upon its assumption of duty and service as the proprietor of the state. Today, the good quality of the road is still on ground to attest to our claims. To a large and reasonable extent, these roads provide wide range of access opportunities for all – pedestrians and motorists alike, within the state capital of Osogbo. We fully appreciate the construction and rehabilitation of these access roads, more so as they were done in advance of the commencement of the reconstruction and rehabilitation of Major Township and federal roads; so as to smoothen passage of traffic within the city.

good state of our roads. Also, the non-delegate public coped amenably well with the crowd of the period through the assistance of these newly-constructed roads. Today, the roads remain useful and invaluable for our convenience and easy movement in and out of the state capital. ·

Ola Iya / Odi Olowo Junction Opening

SHORTLY before the unceremonious exit of Prince Olagunsoye Oyinlola from office as governor of the state, traffic lights were introduced to some major junctions in the state capital. One of such junctions was the Orita Ola Iya/ Odi Olowo Junction. Other points within the state capital were the Old Garage Roundabout and the Oke Fia Roundabout. It was initially conceived (erroneously though) that the congestion of the time was due mainly to huge vehicular movement in and out of the city. The emergence of Aregbesola, a trained and seasoned Mechanical Engineer, tested and trusted, in the saddle of governance discovered other concrete causes of this unnecessary congestion. Within the three years of the administration’s giant strides in the saddle, the Ola Iya Junction has been transformed; having been opened up with many link mouths with the main road. This has facilitated smooth and easy movement of vehicles a great deal. It has also effectively counted down on the huge volume of carnages at that junction. As at the time of compiling this report, work is earnestly in progress on the side of the defunct Ola Iya Petrol Station. It is certain that the remaining work on this side and those on the other side of the road (the Apostolic and Odi Olowo Junction) must have been completed by the end of year 2013. •Oke Fia / Rasco Cinema / Old Garage Opening HIS axis constituted one of the gravest trouble spot in Osogbo metropolis, especially in years preceding the emergence of the Aregbesola administration in office. In terms of environmental sanitation challenges; in terms of water erosion and flooding; in terms of indiscriminate waste disposal; the challenges were too rife to cope with. Residential and commercial structures were indiscriminately erected with gross violation to all known rules. T

We place on record how the state capital had played host to events, religious and otherwise, of national and global significance. In April 2013, the Nigerian Baptist Convention’s Centenary Annual Session was hosted in Osogbo. It was this good network of motorable roads that came to the rescue; otherwise, the mammoth crowd that graced the occasion would have been unmanageable. Other similar events which were held in quick succession include the annual conference of Ansar Ud Deen Society, the Lion’s Club and the State government’s hosting of the first-ever Oodua World Children’s Day celebrations in May 2013. It was demonstrated through these programmes that a good network of motorable roads is crucial to development in all facets. •Odi Olowo / Baptist High School / Gbodofon / Aregbe Axis HIS access road, an obvious exit from and link to the everbusy Gbongan Road from the interior of the city was in a complete state of disrepair as at the time the Aregbesola administration came on board in the state in November 2010. The administration swung promptly into action in carrying out the reconstruction of that important road. Pessimists were dazzled as it transited from one stage to another until completion. Today, that road provides good ample link between the interior of the town and the exit Gbongan Road; obviously, the one and only aside the Olaiya/ Odi Olowo Road..

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A practical demonstration of the importance of this road came in April 2013 during the afore-mentioned 100th Annual Session of the Nigerian Baptist Convention hosted by the Osun Conference of the denomination. The Main Venue of the Convention Session being the premises of the former Baptist Girls’ High School (now Baptist High School), Gbodofon, Osogbo, the delegates were helped to easy movement and punctual attendance at events due to the

Beyond the Railway Crossing toward the Old Garage centre was especially perilous in all ramifications; even to the average pedestrians. The goriest event in living memory at that railway crossing is the carnage involving one intra-city commercial mini bus (korope) and a locomotive train. That accident recorded one casualty, and it is just one of the many which occurred in the city. At the Old Garage end from Oke Fia; just after the level crossing, there also was the presence of traffic lights. But these traffic lights were not just the panacea to the myriads of problems militating against residents and passers-by of our roads. The Aregbesola administration wielded the magic wands, as it saw the timely need for broadening of the roads. Today, the road has been broadened to ease off traffic for those exiting toward the old MDS area without unnecessary delays and hiccups. Work is rapidly progressing on other sides of the road. It is hoped that before the year shall reach its very end, the road at that point must have been completely freed of all hiccups, bottlenecks and lockjams. •Freedom Park ( a.k.a. Nelson Mandela Freedom Park) S far as the stretch of area hitherto referred to as Old Garage in Osogbo, the state capital is concerned; the Freedom Park is clearly the greatest accomplishment of the Rauf Revolution. Before the wave of success which brought the

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revolution came about, there was a slum patch of rickety shops and stalls where itinerant traders sold odds and ends. Right and left, at the roadsides, haphazardly-located shops and stalls, which were clearly efforts taken in the uglification process of a state capital, littered all available spaces. Before now, the Osun Capital Territory Development authority and other town planning authorities merely existed for the fun of it. The genesis of the evolution process which brought the Freedom Park into being derived from the master plan contained in the policy document of Ogbeni Aregbesola. In that policy document, where he highlighted the Six-Point Integral Action Plan with which he vowed to govern his people; and which formed his pact with them; the seasoned administrator vowed to revamp the rail transport system as a veritable mode of transportation. For that plan to materialize properly, the railway terminus in the centre of the state capital must be standardized, cleared and provided with well-befitting warehouses. Hence, work started on the clearing of the massive expanse. Already, the occupants knew themselves as violators and trespassers of Land Use Act; since the stretch of land belonged ever to the Nigeria Railway Corporation. Really, it was upon the actual clearing of the expanse left and right that the unsuspecting public realized that the area was so spacious! Today, the ensuing Freedom Park is not only beautiful to behold; but also presents an ample space for decent assemblies, congresses and other forms of rendezvous. All these events being held at the venue are staunch sources of revenue for the proprietor of the space, the Government of the State of Osun. As part of the purposes of the park, motorists who have businesses to transact at the New Orisunmbare Market or elsewhere around the centre have ample spaces to park their vehicles without disturbing the flow of traffic. •Rasco / Railway Station / Old Sawmill / Ola Iya Link EFORE now, making passage from Rasco Cinema end via a shortcut to Ola Iya Junction would present a spectacle of ghettos and residential buildings ready to collapse at any time or be subsumed by the spate of apparently unavoidable perennial flooding. This stretch of land as well is the property of the Nigerian Railway Corporation. Funnily, yet pitiably, many more structures were springing up daily in the area as if they could be built with impunity! B

Most of these structures looked dilapidating and they were annual hosts to water flooding. During rainy seasons, many of the occupants fled to other places, pending the time when the floods would subside! Beyond the river, both at the Railway Station side and at the side overlooked by the Dugbe Police Station, there were patches of bushes which appear dangerous as they could be ready hide-outs to hoodlums and drug addicts who could be the same bunch of criminals unleashing various shades of terror on residents. Still beyond the stream at the side of the Railway Station, was located the old Salvation Army Primary School, one of the schools chosen as demonstration sites for the State Government’s intervention initiative efforts branded the State of Osun Schools’ Infrastructure Development Project (O’SCHOOLS). Today, the new, ultra-modern Salvation Army Elementary School is standing tall and imposing, to the pride and admiration of all progressloving indigenes and residents of the State of Osun. Even passersby from other places cannot hold back rendering spontaneous prayers for the administration that has deemed it fit to rehabilitate the hitherto dilapidating structures of public schools in the state.

To be continued


OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

INTERVIEW

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Omisore Has Questions To Answer Over Ige – Commissioner The Osun State Commissioner for Information, Mr. Sunday Akere, in this interview with FEMI MAKINDE, says Senator Iyiola Omisore will be beaten by Governor Rauf Aregbesola in the coming governorship election in the stat.

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HE emergence of Senator Iyiola Omisore as the governorship candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party seems to be a threat to Governor Rauf Aregbesola’s second-term bid, don’t you think so? To us, the emergence of Senator Iyiola Omisore as the PDP governorship candidate is the best thing that can happen. Omisore has the worst credentials to display among all the PDP governorship aspirants. So, if Omisore is now the one who emerged as the PDP candidate, you can be sure that the people of the state will reject him without thinking twice. Omisore contested an election into the Senate in April.2011. Aregbesola was barely six months in office then and he (Omisore) was defeated heavily. He lost even in his ward. How can such a person convince the people of the state during the governorship election? Omisore would suffer heavier ‘defeat in the hands of Aregbesola in the coming election. Omisore was defeated when this administration was just settling down in office. Now, Aregbesola has spent over three years and has done so much to develop the state; so, you can imagine how Omisore will be thrashed at the poll. There are allegations of nonperformance and capital flight against Aregbesola’s government. Let us look at every sector of the economy and you will see for yourself that Ogbeni has performed very well. Nobody can say Ogbeni has not performed in the area of education, health, agriculture or infrastructural development. Even a blind man knows this government has performed -, If a blind man who has been passing through some bumpy roads now observes that the ride is smooth, he doesn’t need to be told that something has happened because he can feel it even if he can’t see. Some PDP leaders acknowledge that this administration has performed very well and we do not need to be labour ourselves on that issue again. On capital flight, take the dualisation of the Old Garage-Ikirun Road to the Kwara State boundary and Gbogan Junction to Akoda, these projects are major ones given to major contractors, who are financing the projects themselves. They engage Osun indigenes as workers, except for about five per cent of the workforce, who are from outside the state. Go to these sites and you will see that the welders, bricklayers, carpenters, security guards and other artisans are indigenes of Osun. So, where does this issue of capital flight come in? This is an open government; we believe in accountability and we have nothing to hide. Omisore and the PDP in the’ state have said this administration have plunged the state into indebtedness of over N4oobn. How true is this?

We should ask them where the N400bn.debt is coming from. The problem is that the majority of the people in the opposition are illiterate. If they are not illiterate, they should know that no bank will lend you beyond what you are worth. Osun was collecting an average of N4.6bn from the statutory allocation, plus the internally-generated revenue which made it an average ofN6bn monthly. That was before the shortfall in allocation. We spend N3.6bn monthly on wages and salaries; assuming we save N2 billion every month, it will give us N24bn in a year. In four years, which is a term, we will save Ng6 billion; so, tell me which bank will lend you the amount of money you don’t have the capacity to pay back? Which bank in Nigeria has the capacity to borrow any state N100bn, let alone the N400bn the PDP is bandying ‘about? They don’t know where the governor is getting the money being used for the various developmental projects. Despite the dwindling resources, so many projects are going on. The magnitude of work being done is making them to say we have borrowed over N400bn. How much has this government borrowed? The money borrowed was the N30bn .raised from the capital market last year. We also raised a N11bn Sukuk bond last year. That makes it N41bn. What is surprising them is the- wonders this government is performing. Omisore said on Tuesday the APC was planning to assassinate a governorship candidate ahead of the August 9 poll .... The security operatives should watch him. Omisore and his thugs were the ones who attacked the former governor, I s i a k a Adeleke, when they met at a hotel about two weeks ago. They almost killed him. If Omisore is now saying APC want to kill an aspirant, I think Adeleke should report him to the police. He reportedly said in Ife in 2001 that it was God that saved Chief Bola Ige; the following week, Chief Bola Ige was killed. Security operatives should call him and ask him questions about the authenticity of the information he is giving out. Adeleke should do a petition about this because Omisore is not somebody one can joke with and the people of Osun know this.

•AKERE

Omisore also accused Aregbesola of using the killing of Bola Ige to score a cheap political point. Is this not true? Omisore should search his conscience. Bola Ige was at the palace of the Ooni of Ife for a programme on a Saturday, when Omisore and his thugs attacked him, removing his cap and glasses. A newspaper published his interview the following day where he reportedly said it was only God who saved Bola Ige. The following week, the man was killed. He was in prison for sometime on the matter but they used their federal might to scuttle this case. They used the advantage of being in power at Abuja and in Oyo State at that time to discharge him. The Yoruba are no fools. We are a race of culture and history. For ever, until justice is done, Nigerians will continue to ask who killed Bola Ige, and Omisore and his colleagues have questions to answer. The APC in Osun State seems to be defending the Resident Electoral Commissioner, Ambassador Rufus Akeju, while the PDP wants him redeployed. Why? Our party is not in defence of the Resident Electoral Commissioner or the Independent National Electoral

‘Omisore has the worst credentials to display among all the PDP governorship aspirants’

Commission; we are in defence of the rule of law and justice. The PDP went to court and they are still in court. They said the INEC REC should not conduct the 2011 elections. The court ruled that the man should step aside. The INEC, from Abuja, instructed the administrative secretary to oversee the elections. The PDP is still in court against the man; so, what is our business with that? INEC Chairman, Prof Attahiru Jega, challenged the PDP to bring evidence against Akeju because issues like these should not be treated based on spurious allegations. Some parties accused Jega of colluding with the PDP, but evidence must be presented. We are not defending any INEC personnel because that is not our business. Osun people are happy with our government and they are supporting us. But we will not be silent when others are maligned unnecessarily. Omisore also accused Gov. Aregbesola of fanning the ember of religious disharmony. But when did Omisore himself become a religious man? When last did he wake up oil a Sunday morning to go to church to worship God? The government of Aregbesola is the first in this country to abide by the constitutional injunction that no religion should be made religion of the state. The Constitution of Nigeria recognises the secular nature of the state and that is why we invite the three major religious organisations to pray at any of our state functions. There is no religion that is the religion of the state in Osun. They are-the ones using religion to cause tension. It is their antic and their handiwork. •Culled from THE PUNCH


OSUN DEFENDER Tuesday, April 22, 2014

PHOTOTALK

15

Comparison Between The Old School Building And New Schools’ Reclassification Structure In Ikirun, State Of Osun, As Captured By Our Cameraman, JESUDOYIN ABRAHAM, Last Saturday.

•The newly-constructed Holy Trinity Middle School, Oke-Afo, Ikirun.

•The old Methodist School-1, Isale-Afo, Ikirun.


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TUESDAY, APRIL 22, 2014

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ECENTLY, Governor Rauf Aregbesola had on two occasions pontificated on the university system. At the second UNIOSUN Distinguished Guest Lecture series at Osun State University, Osogbo, the governor stressed that a university is not a place established merely for the pursuit of knowledge, but a place to generate knowledge that will bring positive impacts to bear on the society. Also, at the third Convocation Ceremony of the university in Osogbo, Governor Aregbesola averred that Nigerian universities have not performed to expectations in their responsibilities of research and innovations to address poverty and national development. He urged the universities to redirect their focus, saying that if the universities scientifically and philosophically pursue their objectives, the challenges of unemployment and object poverty will reduce drastically in Nigeria. According to the governor, university is crucial to the society to make discoveries and provide knowledge for those who are blind to social development The governor lamented that is was sad that employers are rejecting Nigerian graduates and employing foreign graduates. He insisted that universities must produce best students, who will be productive and be of benefit to the society which, according to him, is the philosophy of his administration. This writer shares the sentiments of Governor Aregbesola. The Nigerian university is passing through a very difficult phase. From its proud and robust status in the 1960’s and 1970’s, the universities are now struggling to maintain their ageing and inadequate facilities in the face of the seeming insurmountable challenges of the 21st Century. Since the inception of the fourth Republic in May 1999, there has been a fair improvement in the funding of the Federal Government-owned universities. It is pertinent to note that despite this, what is made available is still inadequate to meet the numerous needs of the universities. For the universities to break even and forge ahead to accomplish their mission of producing highly qualified manpower to manage both the national and international economies, a critical review of the situation is most desirable. In this regard, there is the need to rediscover the factors that have sustained the great universities in the world. Over the years, great universities have been built and sustained, based on effective combination of the followings: grants from the proprietor(s), for example government/ private concerns; contributions from major stakeholders (students, parents, alumni etc) and foundation/ endowments. Given the high level of development worldwide, particularly in the more advanced countries of Europe and America, universities and research

By PROF. A. S ASAJU

The Osun Governor Challenges To Universities

•AREGBESOLA

institutes and other higher educational institutions in developing countries should champion the cause of enhanced development of their nations. The university, which has a large preponderance of high calibre intelligentsia, must give good example to the society. Universities worldwide are established to teach, research and render service to the society. Any university worth its salt is, among others, the conscience of the society. Education provided in the university system should be such that it redefines the individual and make him or her a model in the family and the society at large. A university should determine not only to appropriately align with the universal practice in universities worldwide, but also, pursue the vision of carving out an enviable niche for herself as a centre of excellence. Universities should trace the issues leading to the decline in the educational and national lives of the nation with a view to bringing about the

desired positive change. There is an urgent need for assessment in all the Nigerian universities, the result of which should determine what each university requires in order to raise their level to acceptable standard. Staff and students should regard the university as theirs. They cannot write their history without the university. All disagreements should end on a round-table. University gates must never, for any reason, be locked. People should be free to express their views without locking the gates. Students constitute the critical population of any institution. They remain the ultimate beneficiaries of university policies, achievements and errors. For these reasons, students should be held in high priority in whatever steps the university takes in the system. Students are enjoined to protect the good name and reputation of the university, imbibe the university culture of good character and academic excellence, project the peace, progress

and ideals of the university always. Above all, they should obey all regulations, show self- discipline at all times and respect the rights of others throughout their stay in the citadel of learning. Students’ officials should embrace the principle of institutional harmony as this is an important ingredient for realizing the university goals. Both the management and the students must be united in the quest of seeking knowledge and searching for the truth always. Students’ leaders should, therefore, handle unionism as a means of contributing positively and constructively to the development of the university and also an avenue for developing leadership potentials and qualities in the individuals involved. Students as leaders of tomorrow ought to put their feet on a good pedestal at this stage so as to infuse in the society an assured future. Members of the Students’ Union, especially the silent majority, must, therefore, organize and mobilize themselves in such a manner as to openly prevail in the leadership to always choose paths of dialogue where issues could be amicably resolved. There is the need to shift attention to some key issues that are not just current on the campuses but having the capability of destroying the whole structure. There is the issue of dichotomy among the unions in the universities, and the unhealthy rivalry for the control of the institutions by both the management and the unions. The university, as a system, is a single integrated unit working for the common goal of rendering teaching, research and public service. Everyone’s contribution in the system is important and none is inferior or superior in any form. Ideally, the system should function as a single body consisting of several organs supporting the same being. Although the head is on top, it should not deride the toe simply because the toe is located below the other organs of the body. Unions should see themselves as partners in progress with the managements of the universities. Both parties have to work for the overall development of the system. Were the system to collapse, both parties would suffer immensely, and in several cases, the staff as a body, and, as individuals, are the greatest losers. There is the need to explore all available means of promoting healthy coexistence among the unions in the universities and between the unions and various managements of the institutions. All stakeholders should play their assigned roles conscientiously with a view to achieving the dream of 21st Century University system.

•Professor Asaju wrote in from Federal University of Technology, Akure (FUTA).

OSUN DEFENDER is published by Moremi Publishing House Limited, Promise Point Building, Opposite Guaranty Trust Bank GTB, Gbongan Road, Osogbo, State of Osun. All correspondence to the Managing Editor, KOLA OLABISI, Telephone: 08033927286 (kolaolabisi@yahoo.com); Editor, KAYODE AGBAJE, Telephone: 0803-388-0205, E-mail: osundefender@yahoo.com, kayodeagbaje@yahoo.com. ISSN: 0794-8050.Website: www.osundefender.org.


Osun Defender - April 22nd, 2014 Edition  

Don't Import War To The West - APC Warns VP Sambo Omisore Has Questions To Answer Over Ige - Commissioner

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