By Kolawole Olayinka, Abeokuta
The Ogun State Governor-elect, Prince Dapo Abiodun has pledged to “submit himself to the will of the people and agenda of the state in accordance to his electioneering campaign” when sworn-in on May 29 as the next executive Governor of the state.
Abiodun also assured that he would be “humble” in governance, saying since “humility” has taken him far in life, there would be no reason to change when he is in power.
The successful entrepreneur and oil magnate gave the assurance in Abeokuta, the Ogun State capital, in an apparent response to the remarks by Nigerian businessman and politician, Afolabi Adeola, during Abiodun’s pre-inauguration lecture.
Adeola who was the Chairman of the occasion had lamented that politicians while seeking the people’s votes, always wear the garb of humility and which tends to make the citizens have feeling of a new dawn but said once such politicians were elected and sworn-in, the whole thing turned to an illusion.
The co-founders of Guaranty Trust Bank (GTB) said Abiodun ran a difficult race in the state and emerged victorious, advising him not to toe the path of others who would set Committee after committee only to treat the recommendations of such Committees with disdain.
He also advised the Governor – elect to “submit himself” and his “cronies” to the agenda of the state and interest of the people.
However, Abiodun assured that his administration would be different positively.
The Governor-elect admitted that there were many challenges confronting Ogun state, such as of paucity of funds and disconnect between the government and the citizens, but expressed the confidence that with conscientious efforts and good governance, some of the challenges would be significantly addressed, if not totally eliminated.
He said: “In the course of my campaign which cut across the length and breadth of the state, I saw the abundant natural endowment and vibrant youths population and felt the enterprises spirit of the people. But the deplorable conditions if our infrastructure, the less than dignifying living conditions of an average citizen which is part of the unmistakable disconnect between government and the citizenry also steered us in the face.
“Citizens have become cynical of government and trust, which is an essential element of the social contract between the government and the people has been badly impaired.
“Indeed, the wide gap between the potentials and realities on ground showed that there is a missing factor in catalyst and an enabler. I have no doubt that the missing link is good governance.
“Sequel to the electoral victory, three major steps have been taken as part of the preparations of the incoming administration to match actions with words in determination to realise the mission to provide good governance.
“The tasks ahead are daunting, the challenges are many, the resources are limited, yet, I am confident that once we have the most important currency in our people’s bank, which is the trust of our people, we will be okay.
“We will be concenscious oriented, we will be accountable, we will be transparent, we will be responsive, we will be equitable and inclusive, we will be effective and efficient, we will follow the rule of laws and we will be participatory.
“These are non-negotiable principles that will underpin government operations and our definition of good governance.
“I will submit myself to the will of the people; I will invest in human capital, I will remain humble. If it has gotten me these far, I don’t have any reason to change.
“Let me assure you that we will careful study and stick to today’s conversations and synergize them with other suggestions such as that of the workgroups’ reports.”
The guest Speaker, Prof. Pat Utomi, who spoke on the topic of the lecture titled: “Good Governance And Public Administration,” said productivity is the driver of development and advised Abiodun to engage the people productively.
Utomi urged the Governor-elect to train, retrain and continue to retrain the state workforce to achieve quality results from them as well as create wealth, tackle poverty, unemployment and security challenges in the Gateway state.