Despite the economic downturn caused by the drop in global oil prices, as well as the steep reduction in monthly allocation to states from the federation account, Governor Ayodele Fayose of Ekiti State, has promised to continue to prosecute programmes that will make life more meaningful for Ekiti people, within the ambits of his administration’s six-point development programmes.

Governor Ayo Fayose Acknowledge the cheers for their supporters during his Thank you tour in Ado Ekiti on Friday
File Photo: Governor Ayo Fayose Acknowledge the cheers from Ekiti people during a Thank you tour in Ado Ekiti on Friday

Fayose in his new year message said, although the implication of the adverse economic situation threatened the implementation of the state’s 2015 budget, but his government has kept faith with its promises to the Ekiti people.

According to Governor Fayose, despite the grappling challenges, his administration was able to off-set part of the arrears of salaries and other fringe benefits that we inherited from the previous administration to our workers, as well as also off-set unremitted deductions.

He also said, his government commenced the payment of the gross of workers entitlements since October 2014 and was able to pay workers salaries up till October 2015.

His words: “I congratulate and rejoice with you for the opportunity the good Lord has given us to witness the beginning of another year. May His divine grace sustain us all throughout the New Year and the ones ahead.

“Fellow citizens, year 2015 was full of its challenges. As a government, it came with all turbulence against the desperation of a few political rejects and their collaborators’ to return to power through the backdoor after their defeat in a free and fair election.

“They went as far as rallying powerful forces and hiring external aggressors to wage war against their own father-land. They held the State to ransom for a while before they were scattered by the determined will and unity of our people. I thank the Almighty God and security agencies for the reign of peace in our State after the menaces of abductions, kidnappings and inter-ethnic discords.
I thank the good people of Ekiti State for their steadfastness with me and their government. As a people, we were not spared the pains and deprivations of the downturn in the national economy.

“During 2015, the international pricing of oil, which is the mainstay of the Nigerian economy, went abysmally down. This negatively and drastically affected our earnings from the federation account.
The implication of the adverse economic situation threatened the implementation of the 2015 budget. This notwithstanding, Government kept faith with its promises to the people.

“We were able to off-set part of the arrears of salaries and other fringe benefits that we inherited from the previous administration to our workers. We also off-set unremitted deductions. My government commenced the payment of the gross of workers entitlements since October 2014 and we were able to pay workers salaries up till October 2015.

“Furthermore, despite the economic challenges that we face, this administration completed works on the following capital projects:-
(a) The Petim- Housing Estate Road, Ado-Ekiti;
(b) The Awedele- Secretariat- Road, Ado-Ekiti;
(c) Construction of VIP reception hall at Ewi’s palace;
(d) The Palace Gallery of Ewi of Ado-Ekiti;
(e) The Irode Matthew street road, Ado-Ekiti;
(f) Asphalting of Fayose market, Ado-Ekiti;
(g) Dualisation and illumination of 1km Afao township road;
(h) Construction of 74 lock-up shops at Elegberun market, Ikere-Ekiti;
(i) Construction of 40 lock-up shops at the Bisi Egbeyemi market,
Ado-Ekiti; and
(j) Construction of an ultra modern lecture theatre at the college of
Education, Ikere-Ekiti.
In addition to these completed projects, works are on-going on the
following capital Projects:-
(a) Extension of the dualisation of Ado-Ikere road;
(b) Construction of an ultra-modern market in Ado-Ekiti;
(c) The Ekiti Airstrip project;
(d) The Fajuyi-Okesha flyover project.

“Aside these tangible projects, this Government held an Education Summit last year and its objective manifestations are already being felt.

“Similarly, Government was able to achieve the accreditation of programmes in our tertiary education and health facilities.

“My good people, I have christened the 2016 budget which was passed by the Ekiti State House of Assembly last month a “Budget of Reality”.

“This is to reflect the current economic situation in our country. We must cut our cloth according to our sizes. We shall be realistic in our projections and government expenditure.

“My administration shall continue to prosecute programmes that will make life more meaningful for the people within the ambits of its six-point development programmes.”

Continuing, Fayose said: “In addition to paying attention to the welfare of our workers, Government shall within the first quarter of 2016 commence the payment of N5,000 per head to selected persons within the vulnerable group under its Social Security Programme. Suffices for me to reiterate that the major objective of this government is to alleviate poverty in our State and not to compound it.

“Consequently, this administration will not retrench its workers under any guise nor effect a pay cut. We shall continue to involve the leadership of labour in decisions concerning our incomes and
expenditure.

“Government shall also strive to ensure the realization of the following capital projects as outlined in the 2016 budget as the realities of our finances may allow:
(a) Dualisation and asphalt over-lay and Led Light illumination of 1km
road in Local Government Headquarters commencing with Efon-Alaaye,
Ise, Emure, Omuo and Ikole-Ekiti;
(b) Rehabilitation of Awo-Ara-Ijero road;
(c) Rehabilitation of Iropora-Araromi-Ijero road;
(d) Rehabilitation of Osi-Epe road;
(e) Completion of structures at the Secretariat Complex;
(f) Construction of a new Governor’s Office.

“Fellow citizens, as we go into the New Year, I wish to enjoin you to join hands with this government more than ever before, to enable us combat the challenges confronting us. We must improve on our
internally generated revenue to augment our earnings from the federation account, through payment of taxes, rates and levies.

“We must also go back to the land to guarantee for ourselves and our children, food security and other benefits of agriculture. Government shall under its Agriculture Rebirth Programme secure Land Banks in each of the sixteen Local Government areas of the State for onward lease to interested farmers to guarantee unfettered access to land. An agricultural summit shall hold within the first quarter of 2016 where the Agriculture Revolution Programme of this government shall be unveiled. A Summit of Landlords shall also be held within the same period.

“Once again, my good people of Ekiti State, I enjoin us to keep hope alive. The present challenges that we face shall strengthen and bring out the best in us. I believe and very strongly too, that our State shall emerge greater than ever before and that our people shall have reasons to be grateful to God for this austere times at the end of the day.”

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