Thursday, July 31, 2014 7:49 am
Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti, has said the establishment of 19 additional local government areas in the state, passed by the House of Assembly after the result of the referendum conducted, was not meant as a trap for the incoming administration of the Governor-elect, Mr. Ayodele Fayose.
Speaking in Ado-Ekiti the state capital on Wednesday after the signing of the bill, Gov. Fayemi said he decided to create the councils to fulfill the promise he made to the people while campaigning for re-election.
He promised that the state government would bridge all noticeable gaps in the policy to ensure smooth take off of the policy before the end of his tenure on Oct. 15, 2014.
Dr. Fayemi explained that the Assets Sharing Committee of the House had visited the affected councils and submitted its report to him, promising to implement the recommendations in the reports thoroughly to ensure smooth take-off of the councils.
The Ekiti state governor added that the people had been yearning for creation of additional councils long before he came to power in 2010.
He then promised to do everything within the confine of the country’s Constitution for effective functioning of these councils before the end of his administration.
“Soon, we will appoint transitional political functionaries that will begin the process of take-off of these councils for rapid development at grass-roots level where the bulk of our people live,” he said.
The Speaker of the Assembly, Dr. Adewale Omirin, said the House decided to key into the policy because of the enormous role the local government system was playing in the lives of rural dwellers.
“We know that local government system forms a critical segment of our development strategy and we need to tap into our rural areas for revenue drive for development.”
Fayemi, candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Nigeria’s main opposition party, lost his bid for re-election to the ruling Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate and immediate past, Ayo Fayose in the governorship election of June 21, 2014 tagged “Ekiti Decides.”
Governor Fayemis defeat in the governorship election shocked many political pundits given his strategy of governance, though many in the state criticised what they have described as an egalitarian style of leadership, which they said created a disconnection with power brokers at the grass-root.
Fayemi was accused of plunging the state economy into huge debt within his four-year tenure, though many have applauded the pace of infrastructural development in Ekiti, through various capital projects, which some say are monumental.
Governor Fayemi conceded defeat soon after the declaration of result by the electoral body INEC on June 22, extending a hand of felicity to Fayose.
He however faults the process leading to the election and the role played by the PDP controlled government of President Goodluck Jonathan.
In an interview granted to Sahara Reporters recently, Fayemi said: “we must also say we were not unaware of the desperation of the PDP hierarchy to ‘win’ Ekiti by every means possible.
“We saw the federal forces at play in the election and they were undisguised in their desperation. Election is a process. An election is not just rigged when you snatch ballot box or when you change result at the collation centre.”