FEATURES:Fayemi’s Three Years of Sustained Development in Ekiti

November 12, 2013

Recently, Ekiti State Governor, Kayode Fayemi, rolled out drums to celebrate the 3rd Anniversary of his administration in the state. Like the previous editions, the event was marked with the inauguration of landmark projects and achievements of the governor in the areas of health and other infrastructure.
In the execution of his policies, the governor has shown extreme bias for youths empowerment, infrastructural and human capital development. For instance, from 2011 to date, no fewer than 17,000 unemployed youths were engaged under various programmes.
According to official sources, the achievements were recorded despite the fact that Fayemi’s administration allegedly inherited a debt of 42 billion naira and many abandoned projects from his predecessor. In addition to the debt challenge was the fact that the state made only a paltry 109 million naira in Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), and got a meagre 2.5 billion naira monthly allocation from the Federation Account out of which 2 billion was expended on salaries and allowances. It is the view of some commentators that careful planning and genuine commitment had engendered unprecedented transformation in Ekiti.
Fayemi increased IGR from 109 million naira each month to 600 million naira by only blocking wastages. His method is believed to be novel and his style, inviting and fascinating. Fayemi is probably the first governor in the country to embark on a village square meeting for the sole purpose of knowing what each community wanted.
The provision of potable drinking water has been improved considerably as the percentage of water supply in the state now is 52% as against the 25% met on ground on assumption of office. Under Social Security scheme, over 20,000 elders receive N5, 000 in stipends per month and another 5,000 is undergoing registration while the wife of the governor makes sure no elder in the State goes to bed hungry through her Food Bank Programme where the elders are served cooked food in special kitchens across the state.
Renovation of all general hospitals in the state and building of two new ones are on-going while a total of 728.365 kilometres of both federal and state roads have been constructed in the state in addition to the 81.2 kilometres that have been constructed in all Local Governments under the 5 kilometre road-per-local-government scheme. Altogether, a total of 902.565 kilometres of federal, state and local government roads have been rehabilitated, re-constructed and constructed.
More than 90 percent of the roads have been completed while the rest are on-going. Women have been empowered and are now occupying many more visible public offices than ever before. The wife of the governor has brought relief to many mothers of triplets through her Multiple Birth Trust Fund where financial assistance and baby items are given to them and she has given financial assistance to women across the state through her gender empowerment programme.
Transformers have been supplied and installed in many communities to boost electricity supply. Many communities which hitherto had no electricity in over 200 years of their existence – one example being Oke-Ako town in Ikole Local Government – were connected and linked to the national grid.
In the area of healthcare delivery, concerted efforts have been made by the governor to improve on the previous intervention in the sector by ensuring that its all-inclusive.
Pregnant women and children under five years, elderly citizens from 65 years and above, physically challenged persons, and HIV/AIDS patients benefit from the administration’s free health scheme in public health facilities.
For residents who are not in the above category, the administration has carefully designed sessions of periodic free health mission undertaken in the 16 council areas where patients benefit even from surgeries in terms of eye, ear, nose and throat and general treatment as well as screening for diabetes and hypertension, among others.
The Fayemi administration has also committed enormous resources to intervention programmes for people who are not able to pay their medical bills in the hospitals, both locally and abroad.
All these and many more are being done in line with Fayemi’s mission statement in the health sector: Free medical services for children, pregnant women, the physically challenged and senior citizens; establishment of health centres in all locations and increased immunization coverage, according to Health Commissioner, Professor Olusola Fasubaa.
The Health Commissioner said the various programmes of the administration in the health sector were hinged on the governor’s conviction that a healthy society is synonymous to a wealthy society.
He said: “Again, one of the greatest things that we have done is to find out those people that are actually in need, people that are sick that do not know. A lot of our people have burdens of disease that they are just carrying about, going to market, going to work without knowing. We find them out and give them the necessary medicaln attention.”
Fasubaa said no fewer than 30 per cent of the population of Ekiti State had benefitted from the free health mission which is in its eighth session which began this month in each of the 26 constituencies across the state.
The weeklong mass screening for cancer, hypertension and diabetes in June, 2013, shortly after the former deputy governor, the late Mrs Funmilayo Olayinka, died of breast cancer, was another plus for the government as it revealed a lot of people having cancer and other metabolic problems, thus saving their lives.
The commissioner said many of the breast cancer and other cases discovered in the course of the screening were treated, saying: “Many of them, you know women, keep all these to themselves as secrets. They will not consult doctors on time, the few ones that we were able to get at the early stage, we operated the breast cancers at Ekiti State University Teaching Hospital, EKSUTH, and State Specialist Hospital, Ikere Ekiti.”
This intervention programme was followed by the establishment of Funmilayo Adunni Olayinka Diagnostic and Wellness Centre in EKSUTH to honour the memory of the late Deputy Governor as well as screen for cancers – cancers of the cervix, breast and to also follow up on men who may have cancers in their stomach either in the liver, in the prostate in any of the organs.
According to Fasubaa, the diagnostic centre is equipped with six machines – a mammogram machine that would be used to screen and diagnose breast cancers there, a machine to scan for cancer of the cervix, another one that will look into the heart and look into other structures in the abdomen and even in the chest to pick up solid masses and diagnose heart disorders, and as well some screening tools to screen for various illnesses, among others.
The commissioner said the centre “is essentially designed to take care of chronic disorders like hypertension, diabetes and cancer. Our people can just walk in there anytime and either by referral or non-referral.”
In the Agricultural Sector, the government disclosed that his administration has attracted investments in the sector to the tune of US$300 million in the last three years .
According to the governor, the sector can now boost of a credit facility of N80 million and tractors worth N100 million.
He explained that the investments are from reputable indigenous and international agricultural institutions including Agricultural Company (AGCO) which has partnered with the state government for the establishment of 2000 hectares of mechanized rice, soybean, and cassava while New Vision Technology is establishing a $165 million agric city.
Fayemi added that Dutch Agricultural Development and Trading Company (DATCO) is working on the establishment of high quality cassava flour processing factory. Vegefresh has taken over moribund Orin cassava processing plant and has successfully upgraded the capacity of the plant from 10 tonnes to 60 tonnes per day production while others, including Datlex, RENL, GIL, Arewa cotton, and Spectra, among others, have partnered with the State to actually use the vision of the present administration to make the state the food basket of Southwest Nigeria.
He stressed that the cheques being distributed and the tractors are targeted at intended beneficiaries whose operations will impact the agricultural sector, even as he stated the zero-tolerance of his government to non farmers who used to hijack the benefits and supports meant for genuine farmers.
While lauding the support of multilateral institutions, including the World Bank, African Development Bank, UNDP, DFID and FAO for the various drives in the sector, the Governor noted that the Youth Commercial Agriculture Development (YCAD) programme has capacitated some 250 youths to cultivate 1900 hectares of cassava, 53,000 cocoa seedlings, 109,560 oil palm seedlings, 60,000 fingerlings, 6,230 kg of fish and 60,000 broilers.
Dr. Fayemi explained that the farmer empowerment activities of the state government through the National Programme for Food Security (NPFS), FADAMA3, and Rice expansion project have continued to be sustained with thousands of beneficiaries.
This article was first published in Daily Independent

Last modified: November 12, 2013

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