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Governor Seyi Makinde’s Remarks at the Commissioning of the Dualised 12.5 km Challenge-Odo Ona Elewe-Elebu-Apata Road

Governor Seyi Makinde delivering his remarks during at the commissioning of the dualised Challenge-Odo Ona Elewe-Elebu-Apata Road (12.5 km) on Friday, 16 February, 2024.

Being the Remarks by His Excellency Seyi Makinde, the Executive Governor of Oyo State, at the Commissioning of the Dualised Challenge-Odo Ona Elewe-Elebu-Apata Road (12.5 km) on Friday, 16 February, 2024.

Let me formally and warmly welcome my brother, His Excellency Dr Peter Ndubisi Mbah, the Executive Governor of Enugu State, to our dear State. Thank you for honouring us with your presence today.

We are here today for the commissioning of the dualised 12.5 km Challenge- Odo Ona Elewe-Elebu-Apata Road. This is our way of ushering in prosperity for our people and ensuring that they enjoy the dividends of democracy.

When we commission these projects, we often go back to see the impact these projects have on the lives of our people. For most of them, a road project is the difference between being able to quickly go from their homes to the market or spending man hours in traffic. This particular road is cutting down travel time by at least 30 minutes for some. So, when we say where roads go, development follows, we are simply stating the facts.

We are also mindful of the fact that our people want more. We know things have been tough, so we promise to do more. It may not be as fast as you want things to happen, but surely, we will get to our destination by God’s grace.

Let me also use this opportunity to talk about the meeting we had a few days ago. We, the governors of the Peoples Democratic Party, including my brother here, His Excellency Dr Peter Ndubisi Mbah, met in Abuja, and one of the key issues we discussed is the economic hardship our people are facing. Our focus at this time is helping our people overcome the challenges of the times.

Some people can continue to play politics and tell lies about how things are; I read claims that FAAC has doubled for States and LGAs. In fact, for Oyo State, the increase in FAAC is from about N6 billion to about N8 billion. I also read the claim that PDP Governors are owing salaries and pensions. Well, here in Oyo State, we continue to meet our obligations to our workers and pensioners. We have been paying salaries and pensions without fail on the 25th of every month and also paid 13th month salaries every year since 2019. We also gave a wage award for six months, since October 2023 which will be extended for another six months.

We all know the reality of the times no matter how anyone tries to paint it. And, in the weeks, and months to come, our dear party will propose action plans that we believe will work for our nation when adopted. In doing this, we again demonstrate that we care more about the progress of our people than we do about politics.

I urge you all who came out here for this commissioning today, if you take nothing else away from my remarks, to take this: to make Nigeria great is our collective responsibility, and we all must work together to get Nigeria working again. I repeat this will be the focus of myself and all the governors of the PDP in the weeks and months to come. So, I encourage our people to remain hopeful, the tough times will soon be over.

So, on that note, I will be yielding this podium to my brother, His Excellency Dr Peter Ndubisi Mbah, to give us his own remarks. Thereafter, we will proceed to commission this dualised 12.5km Challenge-Odo Ona Elewe-Elebu-Apata Road which we have renamed the Theophilus Akinyele Way to the glory of God and for the benefit of the good people of Oyo State.

Seyi Makinde

16 February 2024