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Ortom’s Second Term and The Task Before Him

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Benue State Governor Ortom
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As Benue State Governor, Samuel Ortom takes oath of office today to mark the commencement of his second term, our correspondent CHRIS GAGA, examines his first term in office and the expectations of Benue people from his last term as governor.

It was on the 29th May 2015 when governor Samuel Ortom ascended the throne of power as the 5th democratically elected governor of Benue State.

Today makes exactly four years after, and governor Ortom having rewarded a renewed mandate by the sovereign people of Benue State will be taking the oath of allegiance for the second time as executive governor of the food basket state.

Of course his reelection by the people of Benue state may be a clear pat on the back and a repose of confidence that the governor has tentatively performed optimally during his first term, after all, reelection into such offices ought to be the collective resolve of the people to reward hard work in terms of performance.

Thus, whether this was the basis for his reelection or not, it is probably not the crux of this analogue.

While the event of his inauguration for the second term is historic, many Benue people may rarely see his second term as a time for consolidation, but rather a time for the governor who is said to have performed poorly in his first term to cut his stint in the annals of development of the state. No doubt, the expectations from the Benue masses are high.

Considerably, a cursory throwback on governor Samuel Ortom’s first four years in office becomes key as he renews his oath to occupy the Benue Peoples House in the next four years. This perhaps may give the people insights into what the governor is set to achieve for the state in his last term.

Memorably, the governor in his first term had a developmental blueprint christened, “Our Collective Vision for a greater Benue.” This blueprint had five cardinal areas of focus which encompasses; Agriculture-driven Industrialization, Steamed Based Education, Security, youth empowerment and job creation, and Improved Infrastructure. But while the governor has obviously done well and is applauded in the area of Security, it has remained a tantalizing mirage as to whether any of the other cardinal areas of his blueprint have been implemented even averagely.

Largely, his efforts in tackling insecurity is the greatest achievement of his first term. This is cognitive of the peoples Anti-Open Grazing and Ranches Establishment Law as firmly implemented by his. administration. His amnesty program which yielded minimal impact is never to be left out, same as his dexterity in handling internal and inter-border disputes recently.

Although the governor has listed his achievements in the various sectors of Agriculture, education, health, infrastructure, youth empowerment and employment, his critics and many other Benue citizens say such achievements as highlighted in his scorecard are not feasible. His critics may be fair, they may not.

But while it will be highly unfair for anyone to say the governor has failed woefully in his first term, it is definitely not out of place to say the state deserve better developments than where it is staggering presently.

Positively, the Benue State governor is not unaware of the task ahead of him in his next four years in office. He has admitted repeatedly that costly “mistakes” were made in his first term, but “lessons” have been learnt, and he was ready to relaunch Benue into its pride of place amongst other states in his second coming.

Of course, one of the major problem governor Samuel Ortom promised and was expected to tackle in his first four years, which is the welfare of Benue workers has remained unsolved but rather degenerated. Benue workers are now owed salaries to the tune of 5 months(state), 10 months(Teachers), 11 months(LGs), and over 14 to 18 months(pensions) respectively as against 3 months(state), 4 months (local government) he inherited in 2015.

Investigations also have shown that the first term of governor Ortom administration is alienated from the rural areas. There seems to be little or no government presence at the grassroots, a situation that has caused gross decay in rural infrastructures such as feeder roads, bridges, lack of electrification and other basic amenities in spite of claims that his government has carried out over 800 water projects in the rural areas. Obviously, the 23 local governments of the state deserve better transformation in his second term.

The hopes and expectations are still high even as the governor takes oath of allegiance to mark the commencement of his second term in office. For many, it is time for Samuel Ortom to make the people reposed or redevelop confidence in his government through robust and physically viable developmental projects that tends to transform the state and improve the livelihood of every Benue citizenry.

Expectedly, our Correspondents spoke to some Benue citizens who spoke on their expectations from the second term of governor Samuel Ortom One of them, an elder statesman and former permanent Secretary in the state, Engr. Peter Torjum, expects the governor to take development to the rural areas of the 23 local governments of the state. He also wants the governor to address the issue of welfare of workers and pensioners in the State.

“The governor should take development to the rural areas because his first four years witnessed low presence in the rural areas of the state. So he should focus on the grass roots.

“Let him bring in technocrats who can perform very well so that his second term will not be abysmal. He needs competent hands run his second term. It is key.

“In the area of welfare, I know the salary is regular now, except for the arrears. So he should try to pay we pensioners our wages as at when due, that is most important. And he should then pay some gratuities and pensions arrears. All these things if he pays then we will be very happy and support him to run his second term very well,” Engr Peter Torjum said.

A youth, Mr. Terseer Bamber wants the governor to cash in on agriculture which is the main stead of the people so as to improve the economy of the state.

“The expectations of an average Benue person is development beyond what we have seen in time past. We expect job creation, infrastructural development and most importantly assuming our position in the comparative advantage we have, which is agriculture. In the past four years of Ortom administration, we have not seen these things as Benue youths, come to limelight.

“So my expectations in his next four years is to see him prioritize these areas I have mentioned. First of all, commercializing agriculture, moving to improve infrastructure both within the cosmopolitan centres of the state and the rural areas, and then most importantly paying particular attention to youth employment and empowerment, because if that is not addressed, we are definitely sitting on a time bomb,” Mr. Bamber noted.

Mr. Odaudu Owoicho opined that, “as a Nigerian and an indigene of Benue State, my expectations from Ortom’s first and present administrations have been high. But, like the saying goes: “Expectations Kills”, so, for this singular reason and experiences of poor leadership from the past political administrations, I expect nothing, but if this present leadership led by the Samuel Ortom’s (PDP) gives us a new direction and thought, I will expect nothing but the best. More particularly in the areas of salary payment and augmentation, job creation/youth empowerment amongst other things – industrialisation, infrastructural development and other basic amenities for the wellbeing of the people.”

Another Benue indigene who preferred to be addressed as Martins, said bluntly that governor Ortom has nothing to offer Benue judging by his antecedents in his first term and even others positions.

“GOING BY HIS ANTECEDENTS IN THE THE FIRST TERM, I DON’T EXPECT MUCH FROM HIM, BECAUSE HE HAS SHOWN THAT HE LACKS VISION.  This is without sentiments, but as a keen observer, going by his past records, he has nothing to offer Benue.

“I have been a keen observer of Ortom’s leadership right from when he was chairman of Guma local government in the early 90s.  He did nothing, I think he is just very good in media propaganda. I see,  he has demonstrated incapacity so I can’t expect much from him,” he said.

Miss Annabel Zegeor said she expects alot from Ortom’s second term, but especially welfare of Benue workers and pensioners in the State.

“I expect him to be very focus and particular about salary of workers especially the arrears. People are suffering much. The pensioners are also suffering; he should look into their issue.

“And again I suggest the governor choose new advisers because he couldn’t do well in his first term to be honest. No one knows, the kind of advisers he had then been part of the reasons for his poor performance. So he should take care of that, if he wants to do something.

“For me, even though we are not expecting too much from him, he should at least make Makurdi clean and safe to stay by constructing drainages because when it rains, it is usually difficult for some residents to even cope with the level of water,” she said.

Miss Joy Johnson wants the governor to at least open up some streets in Makurdi to easy movement and make the town look neat.

” I don’t expect too much from the governor. But he should try his best and construct some major streets in Makurdi metropolis. That alone is something,” Joy Johnson noted.

Mr. Benedict Terhemen is of the expectations that the governor will do his best for the state during his second term, having parted ways with his godfather, Senator Akume was which the governor said was his detractor.

“We voted him the first time but he didn’t do the things he promised to do for us, and he said his Godfather was the reason for his poor performance, but thank God the God father is not there again. So we expect that his second term will be different and better unlike his first four years.

“He has not even chosen his cabinet yet, so we expect that he will select those who will truly help him in developing the state, but not selfish persons,” Terhemen noted.

Comrade Cletus Aruta, a youth, expects the governor to emulate his counterparts in the neighboring states of Ebonyi and Enugu states who are far doing well in the area of infrastructure and other things.

“I want His Excellency to continue with the payment of monthly salaries to Benue State, Local Government Workers and Pensioners and clear the backlog of salaries owed to them especially the Pensioners who had served the State meritoriously and now retired with a lot of family responsibilities such as payment of school fees, house rents and feedings.

“Secondly, I want him to use his 2nd Term in office to embark on massive urban and rural infrastructural developments in Benue State like we are seeing from his counterparts in our neigbouring States of Nasarrawa, Enugu and Ebonyi State which Benue State is far behind right now especially the

construction of Aliade-Mbakinde-Obarike Ito and Oju-Awajir roads which he promised Igede people during his first tenure. He should create an enabling environment for Private enterprises to come and invest in Benue State as almost all minerals and raw materials in Benue State are wasting and untapped into finished goods which will in turns create job opportunities for Benue youth and curbs youth unemployment and insecurity in the state.

“Finally, I want him to use his second term to build and equip our Public Primary and Secondary Schools with the State of Arts facilities such as good class room blocks and toilets, Libraries and provision of Chairs and desks and other office equipment as you know how important is Primary and

Secondary education which are the foundation of learnings and child development,” Aruta said.

For every Benue citizenry, there is a basket full of expectations and they are quite high, but interestingly, governor Samuel Ortom is not unaware of the dilemma before him.

Perhaps, his first four years were laced with excuses, mistakes and administrative blunders, but of course none of such feeble excuses may be entertained by the sovereign people of Benue State that refrained contemplating his replacement even against all odds during the 2019 elections.

The public outcry is alarming. Yes, not very many may have had it juicy during his first term, but the decision of the people to retain governor Ortom is a thunderous statement that, he the governor should not be taken for granted.

The people want good infrastructures such as good roads, schools, hospitals. The state desire industries, factories that can process their fruits, yam, etc, thus investment is what should be encouraged.  The rural dwellers are cut off from the scheme of things, they yearn for feeder roads to help convey their farm produce to the markets.

The governor must understand that Agriculture remains our main stead and as such explore every opportunity available especially facilities provided by the federal government to encourage and transform the agricultural sector as well as generate revenue for the state. If possible, as the food basket state, the people expects the governor to romance with the federal government which is channeling huge resources into the agricultural sector with the aim of driving the policy and making the proceeds available for the development of the state.

The welfare of the people as it concerns their wages is an over trashed issue which the governor should deal with without any backslide. It is also instructive to urge the governor to consolidate on his gains in the area of Security through firm implementation of the Open Grazing Prohibition and Ranches Establishment Law already in use. This as many others believe may put a permanent end to the incessant clashes. This is not forgetting the many Benue citizens who are victims of the invasion and have been suffering in various IDPs camps. It is a necessity for the governor to liaise with the Federal government to make sure that these innocent people return to their homes in safety as soon as he settles for his second term.

It is indeed an epoch-making event as the fifth democratically elected governor of Benue State, Samuel Ortom renews his vow. But as he commences his second term, may his conscience be pricked to live a legacy befitting the goodwill the people have shown him, may he aim for success, and may he not disappoint the confidence bestowed on him. May the governor summon unusual courageous and be focus in implementing his developmental blueprint, “Our Collective vision for a greater Benue”. He may have meager resources at his disposal, but prudent and careful management and appropriation of such resources will do the State a great deal indeed.

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OPINION

Still on Maintaining Balance in Choice of Running Mates

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By Golu Timothy 

Last week, melting point focused on the likely choices of running mates of the different political parties after the conduct of their respective national conventions. While the opposition Peoples Democratic Party, PDP, quickly and calculatively settled for Delta State governor, Senator Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa, the ruling All Progressive Congress, APC, Labour and other parties are said to have quietly submitted dummy names to the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC, subject to final decisions by the respective flag bearers in conjunction with the leadership of the parties.

Timelines have been allotted for such and all other political activities by INEC and last Friday 17th was the dateline for the submission of the names of the running mates. The Electoral Act also provided windows for replacement of names earlier submitted and therefore all the parties have opportunities for proper consultations.

That’s why the APC and LP could submit dummies to INEC and get them comfortably replaced before the dateline for replacements . But for the PDP, it’s a decision taken and sealed, ready for campaigns.

Within the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC which has produced former Lagos State governor, Senator Bola Tinubu as its presidential candidate, growing indications that former Speaker of the 8th House of representatives, Bauchi born Rt Hon Yakubu Dogara is the preferred choice of vice president, is fast gaining momentum. Everyone knows the electoral value and political reach and spread of Dogara having served as one of the best few Speakers the nation has produced. The nation has been agog in debate as to whether Tinubu should pick a Christian or muslim running mate and each religious divide is putting pressure to get the slot.

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It is very imperative to give objective consideration for the choice of a VP from a wider perspective and not from a politically inclined position. If Atiku who is a muslim northerner can pick Okowa a Christian southerner, then it is only proper for Tinubu, a southern muslim to pick a Dogara or any other northern Christian to balance the religious equation. Tinubu, a muslim, from Lagos South West Nigeria, is expected to pair with Dogara, a Christian from Bauchi, North east Nigeria. On the PDP side, Atiku, a muslim from Adamawa in North East Nigeria has already paired with Okowa, a Christian from Delta, South South region of Nigeria. The need for a balanced ticket is not out of place considering the sharp dividing lines of region, religion and ethnicity in the country. That some northern muslims are making strong case for a muslim-muslim ticket is enough for Christians to make a case for balance. Why can’t the Apc and labour tow the line of the PDP? In the submission of their dummies, Tinubu is said to have submitted the name of a fellow muslim from Katsina, Kabir Masari while LP’s Peter Obi has submitted a fellow Christian, Doyin Okupe as running mate. This to me, should be corrected in the final consideration before submission. Its not whether a muslim muslim or Christian Christian ticket can bring victory or not. The most important consideration here is the future of peace, trust, confidence and mutual respect for each other as the nation peruse the next 4 or 8 years as the case may be. As governance takes off with such sentimental affiliations, people will begin to read and define every government policy and action, not on any merit but base on who is saying them and the leadership promoting them.

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If all things being equal ,the polity is not supposed to be divided along ethnic and religious lines, but realities on ground have made it very important for such considerations to hold sway. While some people believe that competence and not where you come from should be the guiding principle, the nature of power dynamics and allocations in politics must have boundaries expressed in such sentiments. We cannot assume otherwise , but must work with the realities in our hands, and the realities are that we are a secular nation dominated by two major religious groups which requires mutual consideration and respect for mutual coexistence. Since we have separate states and constituencies across the nation, one cannot wish away such considerations which are aimed at acquiring power.

Some people keep making reference to the Abiola/ Kingibe era in which both the presidential candidate and running mate were muslim. Such can not be easily applied now in view of the glaring suspicions and differences that exist. One can imagine if Obasanjo who is a Christian had picked a fellow Christian in 1999 or that the late Yar’Adua as a muslim, could have picked another muslim as his vice instead of a Christian. Political crisis and conflicts of monumental proportions could have been created, but for the way the balancing was done, there was peace and stability in governance all through. Why then must we change from the status quo since we have enjoyed doing so in the past and even right now. Buhari could have picked Tinubu as was speculated in 2015 but everyone opposed it then for peace to reign, why now?

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Those who are opposed to such balancing now are not fair to the system. They are self serving and greedy political players who wants to use religion to get what they could not get by merit and who don’t believe in mutual respect or coexistence. If the country can share power between the north and south, why can’t it look at the composition of the two zones in order to also balance the power equation? The choice of Dogara , a Christian to deputise for Tinubu, a muslim is one of the best options of balancing for the nation. It shows he has respect for Christians who in turn will feel a strong sense of belonging in the government.

As it is now, the nation is warming up for the most critical elections in the political history of the people, especially as the country confronts a transition from the outgoing Buhari administration to a new one. Nigerians of all shades and opinions, most especially those at the leadership levels should not divide this country by promoting unpopular and divisive tendencies of Muslim -muslim or Christian- Christian tickets for whatever reasons. While we appreciate PDP’s Atiku for setting the pace, we urge Tinubu, Obi, Kwankwaso and other presidential candidates to, in the same spirit of mutual respect and understanding, balance themselves for the sake of God and a peaceful country. We must look at the nation beyond our personal prisms and calculations. We must know that diaris God oh.

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OPINION

The Evolving Peter Obi Phenomenon

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By Femi Mimiko 

As a political scientist, I am conversant enough with how a momentum similar to the one that is building up behind Peter Obi today propelled hitherto unknown political qualities into high office… The fundamental condition for this type of seismic movement is mass anger and public trust deficit, which are aplenty in Nigeria today… So, let no one underestimate the unfolding Obi phenomenon.

It’s certainly not the case that the piece, “The Peter Obi Tsunami…”, by Farooq Kperogi is a mere stuff for entertainment, as it has been suggested. Far from it! Indeed, the writer has done very well to interrogate the context within which Obi emerged, the forces driving the Obi ‘tsunami’, the limitations thereto, and the upset the candidate may cause in 2023. I associate very well with this broad outline. We should recall that a few days ago, I actually gave vent to my hunch recently that Obi may come off in the 2023 election as a very strong first runner-up, if he does not win.

I guess it’s a similar conclusion Farooq has reached in his piece.

I also fancy the writer’s sensitivity to the fact that Obi tends to embellish his presentations, I add, almost to the point of dancing on the sharp edges separating truth and untruths. Yet, it is absolutely correct that the Labour Party candidate looks far ahead of both Atiku Abubakar and Bola Tinubu in the promise of a better governed Nigeria, which he represents. My four major concerns with, and about his candidature are these: first, Peter Obi doesn’t seem to appreciate that Nigeria of today needs much more than a relatively more efficient, less wasteful, and less corrupt government.

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The primacy of a structural recasting of the country cannot be overemphasised! Obi doesn’t seem to share this concern; or if he does, hasn’t demonstrated any evidence that he knows how to go about addressing it. If extant governance structures are not recast, in the direction of a more functional federal system that would deepen the possibilities for autochthonous development, no matter how much efficiency an Obi brings to governance, the fundamentals of Nigeria’s crises would still be firmly in place.

…while Obi is quite adept as highlighting the challenges of bad governance that Nigeria epitomises, he is not really quite profound in terms of the practicalities of addressing the same. Recounting the difficulties of the country in such an eloquent manner as Obi does it, is good to the ears. The task, however, is what, in precise terms, you need to deliver a qualitative alternative. Obi can still do much better on this.

Secondly, Obi doesn’t come across as tough enough to confront all of the evil forces, and human and institutional principalities that have held Nigeria down for so long. He doesn’t come with a touch of ‘rascality’ that is needful for sorting out this ‘congregation of evil’ that is Nigeria’s rapacious and unconscionable political class. Thirdly, while Obi is quite adept as highlighting the challenges of bad governance that Nigeria epitomises, he is not really quite profound in terms of the practicalities of addressing the same. Recounting the difficulties of the country in such an eloquent manner as Obi does it, is good to the ears. The task, however, is what, in precise terms, you need to deliver a qualitative alternative. Obi can still do much better on this.

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Fourthly, I have this uncomfortable feeling that an Obi presidency could mean greater tension over Lagos, vis-a-vis the thinly veiled ownership claims – or in the least, a sense of entitlement – of his own ethnic nation, on the former federal capital. It would require all the dexterity of an Obi presidency in ensuring this lingering tension does not snowball into a major inter-ethnic inferno. If and when Obi and his handlers are able to persuasively address these issues, so many stakeholders, who are genuinely concerned about the direction in which Nigeria seems again to be headed, may not hesitate to move into his corner.

Talks about a political structure, or shortage thereof, which the anti-Obi forces are drumming up, are valid, but not insurmountable. As a political scientist, I am conversant enough with how a momentum similar to the one that is building up behind Peter Obi today propelled hitherto unknown political qualities into high office. A recent example was Tunisia in 1999, where such a momentum swept Kais Saied, a professor, into the presidential palace. The fundamental condition for this type of seismic movement is mass anger and public trust deficit, which are aplenty in Nigeria today. The Nigerian state is in the throes of what elsewhere I characterised as a ‘creeping failure,’ the evidence of which is out there for any patriotic mind to track. So, let no one underestimate the unfolding Obi phenomenon. Putting him away with a wave of the hand isn’t in any way scientific.

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Femi Mimiko is a professor of Political Science at the Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile-Ife, and a member of the National Institute (MNI). 

E-mail: femi.mimiko@gmail.com; Twitter: @FemiMimiko

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OPINION

Zamfara: A Look at Matawalle’s Enviable Strides in Three Years

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By Jamil M. Jamil Gusau

The administration of Bello Matawallen Maradun Barden Kasar Hausa and Shatiman Daular Usmaniya is three years old as at 29th May 2022 and as rightly expected by many people and as the tradition, people have been expecting the usual heavy celebration such as commissioning of development projects as part of the fulfillment of the development agenda of the government.

As citizen of Zamfara, I am part of those with similar expectations, but I did not allow such outrageous expectations to take away my conscience, especially about the true situation of the state in terms of the re-emerging security challenges confronting it and its people.Basically, however, I am among those that have always demonstrated their concern and extend goodwill to the government of Bello Matawalle especially, considering the good take-off the Governor had, since inception in 2019.

But we should not also ignore the challenges faced by the administration at its infancy stage, from litigations to political crises and masterminded insecurity by  opponents of the administration.

Before the beginning of this fiscal year, 2022, we are all living witnesses to the genuine aspiration of transforming the state as demonstrated by Governor Bello Matawalle in education, healthcare sector, security management, infrastructure as well as human capital development.

We cannot under-estimate the impact of the lingering political crises deliberately caused by the opposition to distract the much needed attention of the government. Evidently before the beginning of the year 2022, the Governor  started on an excellent note by off-setting the outstanding matching grants to the UBEC National Headquarters, Abuja which assisted the state in accessing additional funds that were used in renovating over one thousand blocks of classrooms and an additional funding for the training and retraining of teachers and also okayed the reinstatement of the abandoned (500) school teachers earlier recruited by his predecessor.

He also ordered for the reinstatement of the aggrieved 1,400 civil servants also recruited by his predecessor but were neglected with an order for the payment of all their outstanding entitlements. He also championed the payment of the annual leave grant, which was not paid throughout the eight year term of his predecessor.

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The government of Bello Matawalle ordered the state Ministry for Health to also recruit additional 200 health personnel into the state civil service and within the year, also approved the recruitment of another set of 500 health workers into the service of the state. He has embarked on the renovation and upgrading of the abandoned Talatar Mafara General Hospital and also awarded the renovation of General Hospitals Gummi and Tsafe. This is beside ongoing total reconstruction of Farida General Hospital and King Fahad General Hospital all in Gusau.

Though the completion of Shinkafi referral hospital is at its peak, the administration of Matawalle saw to the renovation and upgrading of General Hospital Birnin Magaji  and that of Kagara in Talatar Mafara.

His celebrated 142 primary health care centers constructed across the political wards in the state are the first unique projects in the entire Northern Nigeria since the return to democracy in 1999. The volume of the road network provided by the administration of Bello Matawalle is significant enough to speak about the foresight of the administration toward infrastructural development.

In Gusau alone, there are over fifteen of these township roads including the most yearned for Kantin Daji road which had hitherto assumed the position of dead trap before the Matawalle magic touched it in 2019. In education for instance, the administration of Bello Matawalle undertook the renovation, rehabilitation, and the supply of furniture at Government Science Secondary School, Shinkafi at the cost of N911,790,250.

In his persistent effort to settle the backlog of WAEC, NECO and other examination bodies which were not paid by the past administration, Governor Matawalle released the sum of N170,000,000 to both WAEC and NECO to facilitate the writing of the 2021 school leaving examinations by our students in the year under review.

The current administration has also released the sum of N186,699,600 as full payment for 67 medical and para-medical students currently in their second year of studies in Sudan. There is also the payment of N24,500,000 for 23 students in India and N56,463,440 92  for students studying in Cyprus, in addition to 19 students studying online in China institutions. The government again released N41,200,000 as part of payment of the backlog of debt inherited and owed Al-Hikmat University, Ilorin and the Crescent University, Abeokuta, respectively.

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Based on the realization of the pivotal role of early childhood education as the foundation of all learning endeavors, Governor Bello Matawalle has been able to maintain a modest effort of giving full support to the Universal Basic Education in the State. Accordingly, the administration  released N1.5 billion naira counterpart funds to UBE, which made it possible for the board to draw matching grants and execute various projects under the fiscal year. Some projects executed include 966 classrooms across the 14 Local Government Areas, 54 classrooms of a story building, 1 Administrative Block and Library, and 11 well furnished blocks of ICT centers.

Others carried out by the Matawalle government include the construction of offices for Education Secretaries and 1 Block of 200 Capacity Students’ Hostel, Perimeter Wall Fence in 31 Schools, and 95 Cells of 32 Blocks of VIP Latrine. Similarly, 520 classrooms were renovated, and 33,246 seats provided. Moreover, 1,372 Teachers’ Tables and Chairs were supplied.

Judges, Emirs and District Heads are also beneficiaries of the gesture of Governor Bello Matawalle. They were given brand-new vehicles to help in reviving their statuses as the royal fathers and learned jurists whose contributions to the development of the state are acknowledged with esteemed regard.

One cannot ignore the significance of the ongoing Cargo Airport to the development of the state. Though criticism have trailed the entire exercise, it is evident that there is no better time Zamfara needed the airport more than now, considering the immense economic opportunities Matawalle has been canvassing through foreign direct investment.

Within the past three years, the administration of Bello Matawalle has made the Ministry of Commerce and Investment more active than ever before. Within the past one year, the present Commissioner for Commerce, Yazeed Danfulani has succeeded in the transformation of the ministry through tour of various countries to canvass for investment opportunities in areas where Zamfara State has comparative opportunities.

On the area of security management, the government invested hugely in the provision of operational vehicles and payment of monthly allowances to security operatives on special duties. He did not stop there but championed the establishment of Nigeria/Niger inter-regional security network where he succeeded in bringing on board, the Governors of the neighboring Katsina, Sokoto, Kebbi and Jigawa states to fashion out ways of strengthening transborder security management.

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The administration has also renovated and upgraded its liaison offices at Abuja and Kaduna and also constructed a well befitting Presidential lodge in Gusau, the state capital. In 2021 alone, the administration of Bello Matawalle completed 12 township roads in Gusau, the state capital while eight others are at various levels of completion.

The construction of the Deputy Governor’s office is ongoing, construction of Gusau International Airport, which was awarded at the inception of this government is also ongoing. The most prominent among the projects completed by the administration of Governor Bello Matawalle in three years are summarized below:Supply of 200 Toyota Hilux to Security Agencies, Supply of Prado Jeeps to Sole Adminstrators, supply of Toyota Camry 2019 model to Vice Chairmen and Councilors as well as supply of 200 Tri cycle ambulance to 147 wards across the State.

Other projects included construction of 147 PHCs across all the political wards, construction of three WCWC to each of the senatorial districts, construction of (47) kilometers Danmarke-Kadaddab and Kanoma link road  construction of Gusau township roads which include Stadium junction-Kasuwar Danjuma-Tashar Magami road, Zawiyya-Kanwuri road, Kasuwar Danjuma Dan Mai Kyau ginnerry road, Gusau Hotel- Tashar Magami road, Kantin Daji road, Kanwuri-Kantin Sauki road among others.

Other projects include construction of RUGA, construction of (17) kilometer Maradun, Magami to Faru road ongoing, construction of (42) kilometer Tsafe to Yankuzo road ongoing, construction of Mada to Lilo road as well as construction of Janyau ta Gabas road.

The administration of Matawalle also constructed (14) units of local government lodges, constructed Yar Dantsi Bridge and facilitate the release of cash assistance of N50,000 each to thousands of mini-traders. The administration has also renovated  Zamfara State House of Assembly as well as constructed Garba Nadama Multi-purpose Hall amongst others.

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 UNICEF Reveals 226,000 Grave Violations Against Children

Share Post Views: 37 By Evelyn Terseer, Abuja.  Between 2005 and 2020, the United Nations verified over 266,000 grave violations...

Foreign News14 hours ago

Biden Announces Expansion of U.S. Military Presence in Europe

Share Post Views: 39 The U.S. military presence in Europe is set for a long-term expansion, U.S. President Joe Biden...

NEWS14 hours ago

Breaking: Reps Raise Crack Team to Probe Oil Subsidy Regime Under Buhari

Share Post Views: 36 By Ubong Ukpong, Abuja The House of Representatives yesterday, raised a crack adhoc committee, to Probe...

Foreign News15 hours ago

Senate Wades into Ewkeremadu Saga, Sends Delegation to London

Share Post Views: 48 President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, has disclosed that a delegation from its Committee on Foreign...

POLITICS17 hours ago

Tinubu Doesn’t Need to Resubmit Certificates – Uzodinma

Share Post Views: 49 Governor Hope Uzodinma of Imo state has taken a swipe at Nigerians for raising what he...

International Federation of Association Football (Fédération Internationale de Football Association) International Federation of Association Football (Fédération Internationale de Football Association)
SPORTS17 hours ago

FIFA Emerges Best Global Sports Federation on Governance Standards

Share Post Views: 40 By Eze Okechukwu, Abuja FIFA has been rated among the international sporting federations with the best...

Oil & Gas17 hours ago

Wabote Tasks Security Agencies on Enforcement of Nigerian Content in Oil and Gas Sector

Share Post Views: 35 From Tayese Mike, Yenagoa The Nigerian Content Development and Monitoring Board (NCDMB) has tasked security agencies...

Metro17 hours ago

Tricycle Riders Grounds Commercial Activities in Yola

Share Post Views: 34 From Yagana Muhammad, Yola Commercial activities were Tuesday morning grounded in Jimeta, the commercial Headquarters of...

Foreign News17 hours ago

Reps Urge Foreign Affairs Ministry to Provide Ekweremdu with Consular Support

Share Post Views: 35 The House of Representatives has urged the Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Nigeria’s High Commission...

INEC makes U-turn, admits ownership of server INEC makes U-turn, admits ownership of server
NEWS17 hours ago

Over 1milliom Old PVCs, 28,000 New Ones Uncollected in Lagos — INEC

Share Post Views: 40 The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) in Lagos State, has revealed that a total of 1,091,157...

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