Expectations are high among Ekiti indigenes following the inauguration of Dr Kayode Fayemi as the new governor of the state on Tuesday, with many believing that he will make the state great again.
Fayemi’s return to power marks the dawn of a new political journey in the state as the former opposition All Progressives Congress (APC) has taken over reins of power from the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP).
Fayemi, who served as governor between 2010 and 2014, is respected in the state for what the people describe as his intellectual approach to governance.
They are banking on his wealth of experience and “strong connection” in Abuja to return Ekiti to the path of sustainable development.
Speaking to the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on their expectations, many of the respondents expressed confidence in the ability of their new governor to perform.
“I know Fayemi will perform very well; it is not expectation, it is what I know,” said Mr Ayo Babatola, a former local government councillor.
“You don’t value what you have until you lose it. We lost Fayemi in the first term, now we have found him.
“He will work on agriculture as he said in his inaugural speech.
“He is an intellectual, someone that thinks well to mould and remould things,” Babatola said.
Mr Bunmi Awotikun, a retiree from the federal civil service, said Fayemi laid a solid foundation for sustainable development in Ekiti during his first coming.
Awotikun said he had no doubt that the new governor would continue from where he stopped.
“Before Fayemi’s arrival as governor in 2010, there were no five-star hotels in Ado-Ekiti, but within three years, we had the Midas, Delight and many other five-star hotels in Ekiti.
“Then his administration had a massive educational infrastructure programme called ‘Operation Renovate all Schools’.
“Under that programme, 183 secondary schools were renovated in Ekiti at a go.
“Besides, all cottage and specialist hospitals were repaired at once in all the 16 local governments of the state,” he said.
A cleric, Archbishop Michael Fadeyi, described Fayemi as a man with the fear of God, a team player and a great lover of his people.
Fadeyi said, “We have seen somebody who is going to make Ekiti great again.He had done it before, and we are here as his prayer warriors. Fayemi is a man who fears God, who loves people and who cooperates to carry people along.
“We want all people in Ekiti state, Christians and Muslims, to work together as one people, and Fayemi is the man who can bring about the needed harmony,” he said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that until his election, Fayemi was the Minister of Solid Minerals Development.
He is a former Director of the Centre for Democracy and Development, a research and training institute dedicated to the study and promotion of democratic development, peace building and human security in Africa.
Before establishing the centre, he worked as a lecturer, journalist, researcher and strategy development adviser in Nigeria and the United Kingdom.
The governor has degrees in History, Politics, and International Relations from the Universities of Lagos and Ife; he also holds a Doctorate in War Studies from Kings’ College, University of London, England.