Highlights of the achievements of Governor Lucky Aiyedatiwa

By: Precious Oluwole

On Wednesday, December 27, 2023, His Excellency, Hon. Lucky Orimisan Aiyedatiwa, was sworn into office as Governor of Ondo State and 100 days later, the people of the Sunshine State are beginning to feel the positive impacts of his administration.

Governor Aiyedatiwa has earned himself the title of a workers-friendly governor due to the premium he has placed on the welfare of civil and public servants in the State. The Aiyedatiwa administration in January paid the January 2017 salary arrears owed to the Civil Servants and in March he paid three months’ salary arrears of the staff of the Rufus Giwa Polytechnic Owo. This came just two months after he approved the release of N850million to the institution to shore up its subvention. The administration has also emplaced a culture of prompt payment of salaries as and when due.

The monthly N35, 000 wage award to public servants to cushion economic hardship is one of the highest in the country, while civil servants also enjoy free shuttle buses to relief them of the cost of transportation to and from work every day. Aside regular payment of pension, the government also pays N10, 000 wage award to all categories of pensioners in the State. In the same vein, over N1.5billion has been disbursed for the payment of gratuity in the last three months.

The education sector is set to witness a rejuvenation with the ongoing recruitment of about two thousand teachers into public schools to rescue the sector from acute shortage of teachers. Also, the State Government released the sum of five hundred and fifty million (N550,000,000) for the payment of 2024 WAEC fees for students in the public secondary schools to alleviate the financial burden of parents and guardians.

The free shuttle school buses and boats for school pupils are also running across the State, in addition to the ongoing process of rehabilitating hundreds of public primary schools in the State. Tertiary institutions are not left out too as the Governor recently approved N1billion for the construction of a new Senate Building for the University of Medical Sciences, Ondo and another N1.2billion for the completion of abandoned projects at the Olusegun Agagu University of Science and Technology, Okitipupa.

The Aiyedatiwa administration has made the provision of infrastructure and social amenities a priority. When he came on board, the Governor ordered all contractors back to sites while also ensuring that they are paid according to the stages of work done. This injected life into all abandoned projects in the State. Those road projects now getting attention include Oda road dualisation, Ijoka road dualization and the Irese/Shagari Flyover in Akure, Owo dualization, Igoba road construction, etc.

In addition, the Governor, in February, flagged off construction of rural roads across the State to help farmers with easy transportation of their farm produce to towns and cities. The first phase of the project cuts across the three senatorial districts of the State at Oda-Cocoa Board-Langbodo in Akure South LG in the Central; Ode-Omi-Ebute Iyara in Irele LGA for the South and Ifira Akoko-Afo in Akoko South East LG for the North. This is just as the Ministry of Infrastructure last week flagged off filling of potholes on major roads in the State. Also, there is ongoing rehabilitation of 60km selected roads with asphalt-overlay across the State while potholes on all major roads are now being filled.

The first phase of the Light Up Akure project has already taken off with major roads in the State capital now illuminated at night. The Governor is also working hard to restore Akure, the State capital, to its old status as one of the cleanest state capitals in Nigeria. Towards this end, the newly launched Operation Keep Ondo Clean initiative has recorded significant improvement in the waste management in the State in general and the State capital in particular. The Operation Flush initiative is also being rebranded to ensure that channelization is carried out well ahead of raining season to prevent incessant flooding.

While the Governor is promoting the welfare of workers, he is also focusing his attention on providing employment opportunities for the teeming young people in the State. In February, the Governor approved the release of employment letters to 165 newly recruited staff of the Ondo State Internal Revenue Service (ODIRS). About 100 health workers were also recruited by the Civil Service Commission while the process is currently ongoing to recruit additional 600 health workers.

In the face of challenging economy, the administration continues to increase human capital of its citizens, steadfastly running the race to make Akure the tech capital of Nigeria. The government this year began equipping its youth with the necessary skills to thrive in evolving landscape. 618 participants were trained and empowered in February. Also, 10 most innovative young entrepreneurs are being empowered to the tune of N3m each while the Governor also approved an Entrepreneur Summit for young people to hold this month.

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