By Demola Akinyemi
Last Thursday, inside the expansive hall of Kwara Hotel, Ilorin the state capital, with strict obedience to Social distancing protocols of Covid-19, all the elected and appointed office holders from Kwara Central senatorial district gathered to pass a vote of confidence on Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRasaq.
The move, according to Saturday Vanguard check was to tell the whole world that the home base of the governor which is Kwara Central senatorial district was solidly behind him, against the backdrop of the simmering crisis within the ruling All Progressives Congress in the state, and the alleged political differences which Governor AbdulRazaq was said to be having with some political leaders in the state.
The Chief of Staff in the government house, the septuagenarian Alhaji Adisa Logun had set the tone for the gathering when he reviewed Governor AbdulRasaq’s performance in his first year in office which he described as excellent. He said the state had been blessed to have such a governor at the helm of affairs having provided many infrastructure and social amenities across the nooks and crannies of the state in just one year in office.
According to him, “There is no gainsaying that we are blessed with Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq as the CEO in Kwara. We thank God that the governor has made us proud. The meeting is to reiterate our solidarity and support for him, for meeting the needs of the people and for charting a different course from the past”.
The Special Adviser to the governor on Political Matters Alhaji Sadu Sallahu in his remark also described the governor as a personification of humility, stressing that in spite of his noble background and the position that he holds, he chose to identify with the aspirations of the poorest of the poor in the state.
He added that “Governor AbdulRazaq has been part of the revolution in the past two decades. He talks less and because of this many people couldn’t read him correctly. He is a great master strategist, a blessing to us in Kwara state, he is here to ensure a new dawn and solid foundation for the future of our dear state.’’
Another aide of the governor Arc Kale Belgore stressed that “in the last fifteen years, we related politically and his ideas about politics never changed even when we belonged to different political parties. He is a committed Pan Kwaran. He was accused of being charmed by the people of Kwara north because of the quantum of projects he has started there but he said no, that they had been marginalized over the years. He is pushing a Pan Kwaran agenda. He pays attention to details, when he gives you an assignment he follows it up. Many times, we urged him to go to sleep, he was always on duty. He is fulfilling the mandate of the people of Kwara and he should be encouraged”.
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The highest ranking officer from the zone in the State House of Assembly, the Majority leader, Hon Magaji Olaoye representing Afon constituency said the governor’s achievements in the last one year were numerous but was particularly impressed by the permanent solution to water crisis by the governor, a challenge that had defied solutions from the previous administrations.
Hon Ali Yusuf representing Ilorin East in the State House of Assembly also described the governor as “a wonderful and a God-sent leader of our time that Kwara state had been yearning for”. He added that “We do not have any regret voting for him as our governor. AA has come at the right time and he’s doing very well. In my constituency alone, I can point at three standard road projects abandoned by previous administrations which he put back to life. He has laid solid foundation for the younger generation..We are happy today that stakeholders in APC in the state are solidly behind him.’’
Hon Wahab Babatunde representing Afon district, in his contribution commended the governor for his intervention in the crisis in tertiary institutions in the state in the last one year as he has ensured accreditation of many courses and repositioned them to be a force to reckon with, among their contemporaries in the country.
According to him, “when you are dealing with a God fearing person, there is hope. Governor AbdulRazaq is God fearing, so we have hope in him. Before now the neighbouring states used to look at us in Kwara as people who were not serious but now we have someone we can trust as our leader and we are proud of him.’’
Commissioner for Tertiary Education in the state, Hajia Saadat Modibbo who spoke on behalf of other women in the cabinet commended the governor for the appointment of higher number of female in the cabinet with nine out of 16 commissioners being female which was the first in the history of the state.
“This is the first state that we will have female more than the male in cabinet in Nigeria, we are grateful to the governor for that exemplary gesture”, she said.
Modibbo however believed that there was the need to continue to dialogue with other members of the party whom she described as members of the same family but who may have one issue or the other with the governor until truce was achieved.
Representing the voice of the youths, Mr Abdul Olododo, Special adviser to the governor on Agriculture said by his appointment the governor has demonstrated the confidence he has in the youths, saying, “the governor has shown me that leadership is not about feeling on top, but about serving the people’’
The governor’s Special Assistant on Strategy, Abdulateef Alakawa at the end of the programme read a resolution on the vote of confidence passed on the governor by the elected and appointed members of Kwara Central senatorial district which was affirmed by all.