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New Year: ‘Expect more developmental projects in 2022’ – Governor Abiodun

Sekinat Salam-Opebiyi, Abeokuta

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The Ogun State government has reiterated its commitment to delivering more infrastructural projects in 2022.

State Governor Dapo Abiodun disclosed this, adding that the state would witness the completion of projects embarked upon by his administration and those left uncompleted by the immediate past administration, particularly those that have direct economic impacts on the people.

In his New Year broadcast, the governor said though the last two years have been most challenging for humanity due to the COVID-19 pandemic, he expressed optimism that the state would witness new dawn in 2022.

The governor also attributed the survival of Nigerians to man’s indomitable spirit to confront and overcome adversities.

“I am convinced that the year 2022 will be a better year for our dear state and us as individual citizens. The hope is rooted in our faith in God and several achievements that your government, our administration, has recorded since you entrusted us with your mandate in 2019. The steady progression is verifiable with visible projects across the state,” he added.

Governor Abiodun said that despite the outbreak of COVID-19, its wake disruptions and destructions of monumental proportions to the world, his administration remained undeterred but committed to delivering its electoral promises and implementing the ISEYA Agenda.

According to him, several projects were initiated and completed but could not be commissioned due to the COVID-19 protocols.

“Our systematic approach to governance and the solid foundation laid for implementing our programmes and projects before the advent of the pandemic are primarily responsible for the success recorded in socio-economic development. We received several awards in education, housing, agriculture, information communication technology ICT.

“These have boosted steady economic recovery, leading to unprecedented achievement in the state’s Internally Generated Revenue (IGR). As of November last year, Ogun had generated about 84 billion naira representing about 80%  of its proportionate budget of 2021. It placed the state with the most improved IGR of 131.5% in the country by half year 2021. We achieved this without overburdening you, the good people of Ogun State, with unnecessary taxes and levies and despite the pandemic.

“Furthermore, in a report by the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC), Ogun became Number One on the list of Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) coming into Nigeria. 

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

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

Listing his administration’s strides in Ogun state, Governor Abiodun had completed about 287 kilometres of newly constructed/reconstructed roads. Some are still ongoing, just as over 300 kilometres of reconstructed/rehabilitated township and rural roads are at different stages of completion.

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

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

Abiodun, who said his administration was poised to deliver more dividends of democracy in the New Year, added that the 2022 budget he signed on December 30 is a document representing his government’s collective aspirations for 2022.

“Our priority will be to complete and commission all the ongoing projects earlier initiated or inherited, having direct economic benefits to the people. Some of these projects include the Atan-LUSADA-Agbara expressway, which upon completion,  will be one of the most expensive road projects by this administration. We are proud of that investment because the Agbara Industrial Estate, which the road leads to, is the industrial nerve centre of our state and that of Nigeria and, indeed, the entire ECOWAS Sub-region. 

“Among  other roads to be completed and commissioned this year included 

Ilaro-Owode Road Yewa; 

Kemta – Somorin Road Abeokuta; 

Panseke – Adigbe Road Abeokuta; 

Denro – Shasi – Akute Road Ifo; Sagamu – Iperu-Sapade Road;

Molipa – Fesogboye Road ijebu Ode;  Lafenwa – Rounder Road, Abeokuta;

Joju Road Otta; Oke Ola road  Imeko Afon;

Aiyetoro-Imasayi road, Yewa north; Ilase-Koko-Alare road Ipokia and Muslim College road Ijebu Igbo.

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

“Some of the roads which will receive priority attention this year include Ijoko-Akute-Alagbole Road; Siun-Owode Road; and Ilishan-Ago Iwoye Road. We will also pay special attention to Togbunrin road in  Ogun Waterside,  Ikangba Ilese and Esure road in  Ijebu East.

“Furthermore, the  Lagos-Otta-Abeokuta road as well as Otta- Idiroko road will equally receive priority attention through a partnership agreement with the federal government and the private sector.

“We will, however, continue to carry out palliatives on the failed portions of these roads to bring assistance to our people ahead of the Yuletide period.

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

The governor said the first phase of the Ogun State International Agro Cargo Airport at Ilishan will be ready, alongside the improved provision of potable water supply in major towns and cities, through a continuous upgrade of production capacity and distribution network.

“We are introducing community-based water supply known as water kiosking, a new initiative for potable water supply to several communities across the state.

“We shall be implementing our Public-Private Partnership initiatives for power generation. It will improve and guarantee electricity supply to our major cities clusters and estates.

“The implementation of our Multi-modal Transport Masterplan will commence with our modern mass bus transit system launch; this will be deepened and extended to cover all other modes of transportation applicable in the state ( air, road, rail and water).

“The Social Welfare and Wellbeing pillar of our ISEYA will also receive a boost. Having delivered over 1,000 units of our targeted 2,500 housing units as of 2021, a minimum of 1,000 additional units will be delivered in 2022. In the same vein, we will continue with the ongoing rehabilitation of primary healthcare facilities as we make suitable our promise of ensuring functional Primary Health care Centres in each of the 236 Wards. 

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

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

“I salute the enterprising spirit of our market men and women. You are the backbone of trade and commerce. Your government will continue to empower and provide you with all the necessary support to make the new year more rewarding and prosperous for you. 

“In this regard, I have approved the injection and disbursement of additional funds into the Oko’wo Dapo scheme. The scheme has been repackaged to benefit from the lessons and improve the pilot scheme.

“Ogun State Enterprise Development Agency will roll out several initiatives in the new year to support the micro, small and medium enterprises, in conjunction with stakeholders in the sector.

“We have rehabilitated over 900 schools, and we will continue to renovate more and provide them with furniture and other required learning tools. We will also continue our intervention in our tertiary institutions in funding, infrastructure and welfare.

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

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

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

“In our determination to keep our cities, towns and villages safe, we will continue to invest in security infrastructure, capacity building of our security personnel, whilst also improving on their welfare. Towards this end, we will be re-launching the Operation MESA (OP-MESA), a joint security patrol of the military, police, SSS and other security agencies,” the governor said.

Abiodun reiterated that he would continue to be people-oriented and focus on making life more prosperous for the Nigerians, especially in Ogun state.

“We will be resolute and dedicated to this in 2022. We will work day and night for you and on your behalf. We will not rest until we build a better future together for the coming generations.

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

“He thanked Nigerians, and political office holders for steering the course, noting that their continued and unalloyed support since he came on board in 2019 has seen us this far.”

“You are the engine room of this government. Without you, it would have been more difficult, if not impossible, to have recorded the landmark achievements of the last 30 months.

“Fellow citizens of the Gateway State, the journey has been tough, and at times, rough. We are standing because you continue to lift us up with your prayers, support, patience and understanding. We remain very grateful. We are forging ahead, and all hands remain on deck,” Abiodun concluded.

 

Suzan O.

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