Aregbesola Canvasses Joint Efforts In Human and Infrastructure Development For Nation Building

The immediate-past Minister of Interior, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola, has once again sought the cooperation of all stakeholders particularly good spirited individuals in complementing government’s efforts at driving the wheel of development for the mass of the people.

Aregbesola maintained that only a society that has non-state actors contribute to human and infrastructural development has the potential of progressive transformation.

The former governor of Osun stated this Saturday at the commissioning of projects and empowerment programme of the Osun Economic Development Team held at the Olutimehin Grammar School, Isale-Osun, Osogbo.

He lauded efforts of the Osun Economic Development Team for championing the course of community development and empowerment of the people, especially in Osogbo, the capital of Osun.

While lauding the group for the efforts, Aregbesola was optimistic that the projects and empowerment programme would go a long way into impacting the lives of beneficiaries, the programme is reminiscent of the social investment and people impactful interventions of his administration between 2010 and 2018.

He stated, “When we were at the helm in Osun, for the eight years, we made human and infrastructure development our priority. The reason for this is not far-fetched. Development does not occur in a vacuum. Humans drive development. These humans must first be developed with the cultivation of their intellect through education and sound moral instruction.

“Then, the right and proper environment in the form of infrastructure must be created for them to be able to function optimally. The combination of the two would definitely bring about development, God willing!

“When we came to Osun in November 2010, it was apparent then that Osogbo as the capital city was not befitting. It was a throwback to the colonial era. But by the grace of God, we pledged solemnly before God and man that we would change it, and we did.

“Our human development programme covered the entire state. We built state of the art schools that are still a reference point all over the nation five years after we left. Our education programme lifted Osun from the bottom performance in external examinations that we met to top performance by the time we left.

“Our empowerment programmes lifted not less than one million people out of poverty and cut unemployment to near zero, according to the best rating agencies. We unleashed prosperity across the state whose impact reverberated all over the country. In our time, Osun was one of the most peaceful and secure states in the country.

“We embarked on urban renewal across the state, including road construction and rehabilitation which featured five bridges, two of which are cloverleaves. By the time we left, Osogbo was wearing a modern look that we could all proudly look to as our state capital. I am therefore grateful to God that we have been vindicated by history as our good works lives after us.”

The former governor of Osun who spoke extensively on the benefits of placing premium on human capital development, espoused the varying strides recorded in all sectors of the economy during his tenure, particularly in Osogbo, the state capital, that further aided in no small measure, the quality of life of the people.

Ogbeni Aregbesola also acknowledged the continuous support of the people of Osogbo for his tendency since inception, stressing that those in leadership must ensure that democracy works for the people. He also commended the Osun Economic Development Team for their efforts so far.

The former Minister added that, “To the glory of God, we are today commissioning the solar powered streetlights at Oluode and Ajegunle Markets, as part of the ‘Operation Light Up Our Markets’ initiative of the Team. The icing on the cake is the N50 million interest-free loan made available to traders in markets across the state capital.

“Every part of the city is important, but these two markets where the streetlights are being installed are significant in that they constitute the economic soul of the city. The streetlights will beautify the area, enhance security, and encourage night market.

“In the days of yore, streetlights are veritable instruments of communal bonding. The illumination creates the environment for entertainment and social interaction.

“We must therefore thank them for these kind gestures and encourage other well-meaning people and organisations to emulate them and contribute to the development of our communities and empowerment of our people.

“I will continue to cherish and appreciate the warm and enthusiastic accommodation given to me by the good people of Osogbo till today. They continue to honour us with their unflinching support,” Aregbesola stressed further.

The Ataoja of Osogbo, Oba Jimoh Oyetunji Olanipekun Larooye II, who had earlier received Aregbesola and the Osun Economic Development Team and accompanied the entourage to the commissioning of the solar streetlights at Oluode and Ajegunle Markets lauded the team for its contributions to the development of the state capital.

Oba Oyetunji praised Ogbeni Aregbesola for his efforts at changing the fortunes of the ancient town, stressing that the people will continue to celebrate and honour his legacy in the town.

The frontline traditional ruler stated that: “We are always delighted to have Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola in Osogbo. Throughout his tenure, he worked tirelessly for the face-lift of our town and that he had purused vigorously. He is also passionate about anything that will see to the uplift of the community.

“For us, we will continue to support everything that you (Aregbesola) represents. Osogbo is behind you and will forever be grateful to you.”

In their separate remarks, the Chairman and Vice Chairman of Osun Economic Development Team (OSEDT), Engr. Kayode Adegbulugbe and Asiwaju Olusegun Ayoola noted that the choice of the former Minister of Interior as the team’s Grand Patron was as a result of his progressive and humanist ideologies and policies that transformed the landscape of Osogbo and the state in general.

While noting that the essence of the group is not political, the duo said the team will continue to facilitate tremendous development to all nooks and crannies of the state particularly support for market men and women so as to boost the local economy.

They stressed that, “We are not political jobbers. Ogbeni changed the face of Osogbo as a capital city. We made him our Grand Patron because of his enviable legacy, which can not be erased in the history of Osogboland.

“If anyone wants to rubbish his legacy, what will be rubbished is unquantifiable. By the grace of God, we will continue to support him. The major reason we chose him is because his legacy is unrivalled in the history of Osun. We are behind him in every regard,” Engr. Adegbulugbe and Asiwaju Ayoola emphasised.

Also at the event were the former Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Moshood Adeoti, leaders of the Omoluabi Progressives Caucus of the All Progressives Congress in Osun , amongst many other dignitaries.

The event featured the commissioning of solar streetlights at Oluode and Ajegunle Markets as well as the disbursement of N48 million interest-free loan to market associations and community groups in Osogbo.

Sola Fasure
Media Adviser to Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola

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