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We’ll Cushion Hardship While Building Osun’s Economic Base, Adeleke Says In New Year’s Message

“Our dream is for an Osun economy that gradually moves away from its civil service status to a modern agro-industrial based, creative industry focused economy.”

The Governor of Osun State, Ademola Adeleke, has said that his administration is working to cushion the effects of the current economic struggle in Nigeria, and at the same time, build a strong economic base in Osun State to improve the economy of the state as a whole.

In a New Year message to the people of Osun State, Adeleke also said that his government is committed to delivering on the electoral promises that were given to the people of Osun, and they are working assiduously to be in touch with the aspirations of their people.

In his message, Adeleke addressed the economic situation in Nigeria, saying that the Federal Government has enjoined all the state governments in the fight to stabilize and grow the economy. He then said that Osun State is in collaboration with the central government through the National Economic Council to support federal initiatives targeted at reducing inflation, cost of living and stabilising the national economy.

He then spoke of the intentions of the Osun State government to grow the state’s economy, saying, “For the infra upgrade, we are convinced that the state economy cannot attract required investment to realise its industrial potential unless the problem of infrastructure deficit is addressed. Hence, we have started the implementation of the multi-billion naira infra plan that I launched a few months ago.

“For economic diversification, we are growing the creative industry; we are opening up the industrial sector; we are attracting investors in key sectors; and we are re-skilling our youth through the soon to be unveiled Imole Youth Corps.

“To deepen the revenue base, we are tapping into the solid mineral sector; we are reforming the tax sector to eliminate multiple taxation while widening the tax base.

“Our dream is for an Osun economy that gradually moves away from its civil service status to a modern agro-industrial based, creative industry focussed economy. Such diversification with a functioning cargo/commercial airport will grow Osun as an export oriented economy as well as a global tourist destination being the host of important Yoruba cultural assets.”

In the statement, Adeleke said, “I remain firmly focussed on the Five Point Agenda under which you, Osun people, elected us into office. We reaffirm our faith in the principles guiding the five-point agenda which are transparency and accountability, open government, localisation, responsive leadership and attunement to citizens’ aspirations.”

In view of this, Adeleke revealed that his government had put plans in place to ensure proper governance, some of which are blocking leakages in public finance, addressing the corruption and revenue diversion in the solid mineral sector, restoring local government administration for grassroot development, re-professionalisation of the public service, strong attention to workers’ welfare, tapping into tourism, entertainment and cultural potentials of the state, ramping up efforts for a cargo and commercial airport for Osun state, among others.

Adeleke also said that his government plans to embark on a mass water project provision, execute 91 kilometres of road construction, implement free medical surgeries which will cover over 50,000 beneficiaries, a total renovation of 31 schools.

Regarding other sectors, he also revealed a plan to launch sport sector reforms, revive the major commercial and industrial projects of the state, and also to push for the implementation of an Agric processing zone in Osun state.

Adeleke then said that the state is facing several difficulties due to problems left behind by the previous administration, and the administration had adopted a belt-tightening technique in order to properly govern.

However, he said, “Despite the above handicap, our team is determined to continue to deliver on our electoral promises. I am glad to report with gratitude to God that we have remained responsive to the will and aspirations of our people. We get positive feedback and we are satisfied with our high approval ratings.

“We are challenged to do more. We are prepared to make corrections where necessary as much as we will remain uncompromising when it comes to anti-corruption drive, transparency and accountability as well due process. As I always affirm, our tenure is married to rule of law and fear of God.”

Ozioma Samuel-Ugwuezi

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