November 29, 2023

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The Politics of Osun N100b Infrastructure: Iwo in Perspective

By Oladipupo Sefiu (B-urself)

The government of Osun State under the amiable Governor Ademola Adeleke officially came on board on November 27, 2022, with a zeal to turn around the state economy and social well-being of the people. Almost a year after, the government has not deviated from its solemn determination.

By the time it marks its one year in office in the next few weeks, the Peoples Democratic Government-led administration would have checked all the relevant boxes as a team that works with feasible timelines and deliverables.

One of such efforts at providing infrastructural renewal is the recent launch of a gigantic infrastructural development fund worth N100 billion. The plan includes the situation of never-seen-before physical projects across strategic locations in the state. On a deep analysis of the initiative, one would acknowledge that these are not just physical projects, but ones that are at the intersection of investment stability and enhanced economic participation of the people through intra and inter-connectivity within and outside the state, making it cheap and seamless for people and products to be conveyed to where they are most needed.

With the announcement of the communities where these projects, including the construction of six flyer-overs, communities not listed have expressed their displeasures. Some displeasures are truly genuine, but the docile opposition All Progressives Congress has turned this into an object to latch on to appeal to their members. Particularly Iwo is not on the table of communities where flyovers would be sited.

However, it is worthy of note that the infrastructural plan encompasses different segments, such as school renovations, massive lengths of road constructions, hospitals, and subsidized health services, among others, large enough to go around. But the feeble-minded opposition will not talk about it because they want to make heavy weather out of it. For the interested minds not to be distracted by the grumblings of the APC in Iwo and at the state level, it is important to point out certain facts that the opposition is struggling to obliterate.

From the get-go, the governor has made it so glaring that he is a governor of all and a particular friend of Iwo and there is demonstrable evidence to drive this home. In constituting his cabinet, many credible individuals from Iwo were appointed to key roles. This is fact-checkable. At the time these critical appointments were made, the same opposition claimed the governor was ‘Iwonising’ appointments and treating its people with preference.

In terms of projects, the objective conclusion is that Iwo boasts of many timely, people-focused facilities such as road constructions and rehabilitations. For instance, Adeleke’s government has constructed Araromi – Panada – Kuti roads, all within Iwo metropolis.

If it could be argued that the provisions of boreholes and free health services that have benefitted thousands of people, senior citizens inclusive, were statewide interventions, what of the reconstruction of collapsed bridges specially done in Iwo? We witnessed how a chairman under the APC government in Iwo was making a public appeal before a collapsed bridge at the Obate area could be rebuilt. Little wonder that our people did not have any strand of confidence in them.

Until October 27, 2022, the APC-led government paid lip service to the overall reconstruction of the Iwo-Osogbo expressway, only remembering their words about the road during election seasons for twelve years. Regardless of the change of government, Governor Adeleke remains committed to delivering the project. Under his leadership, the state legislature is in close oversight supervision with the contractor, engaging him from time to time and underscoring this administration’s commitment to keeping its promises, seeing the road completed after years of its abandonment by the APC is all that the well-meaning Iwo people are asking for.

As we speak, the moribund Iwo Water Works is being redesigned for municipal water provisions to power businesses and household needs, this is aside from the construction of another 1.5km road about to commence in the Iwo community, Rather than being a vibrant opposition that keeps the government on its toes, the APC structure is engaging in building a communal resentment unhelpful to no one, including the party.

Our people should be told that the latest infrastructure plan is inclusive. Iwo is accordingly captured in the wider net of the plan. This government keeps its word and there is no place for a vile opposition.

Oladipupo Sefiu B-urself is Media Assistant to the Governor on Community Communication and Writes from Iwo.