Rotimi Akeredolu sworn in as sixth executive governor of Ondo

[Governor Rotimi Akeredolu of Ondo State acknowledges cheers from the crowd during his inauguration in Akure on Friday. PHOTO: NAN] Pays Special Tribute To Mimiko
The newly sworn-in governor of Ondo State, Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, has assured the people of the state that his government would utilize all available means to surmount all existing challenges and build on successes of his predecessors.
Akeredolu said this in his inaugural speech delivered during the swearing-in ceremony for him and his deputy, Mr. Alfred Agboola Ajayi at the Akure Stadium, stressing that, “Changing the lives of our people is a goal worthy of our best efforts.” The stadium was filled to capacity with members of the All Progressives Congress (APC), supporters and party leaders across the state, the South West geo-political zone and the country at large, which was led by the National Chairman of the party, Chief Odigie John Oyegun.
Taking the audience by surprise was the National Leader of the party, Senator Ahmed Bola Tinubu, Chief Bisi Akande and his supporters in the state, Senator Ajayi Boroffice, representing Ondo North in the Senate and the Federal House of Representatives member representing Akoko South West/East, Kolawole Babatunde, as they stormed the event. Others were the governors of Kaduna, Jigawa, Edo, Oyo, Ogun and Kogi states, other states’ delegations and the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Ayodele Peter Fayose, who stole the show in his usual style.
Similarly, the Ministers of Communication, Information, Agriculture, Niger Delta Affairs, Labour and Employment, Solid Minerals and Steel Development, Adebayo Shittu, Lai Muhammed, Audu Ogbeh, Prof. Claudius Daramola, Dr. Chris Ngige and Dr. Kayode Fayemi respectively graced the event. Royalties like the Deji of Akure, Oba Aladetoyinbo Aladelusi, representatives of the Ooni of Ife, Oba Fredrick Akinruntan, the Olugbo of Ugbo Kingdom, Oba Michael Obatuga Adetoye, the Jegun of Idepe/Okitipupa and several others were at the occasion. Akeredolu, who was sworn in by the Chief Justice of the State, Justice Temitayo Osoba, with complimentary salutes from the Police Parade Guards, students and other organisations, said he has brought hope, a clear agenda of prosperity and a vision for abundant life to the people. He assured the people of the state of his plans to break the barriers to responsive governance, responsible leadership and utilize the multiplicity of ideas to improve on all sectors of the state. “We can rise out of this dust and build a new Ondo State where honesty, prosperity and confidence can once again be our self-identity. We are determined to make the difference with the specific mandate of redemption liberally handed over to us. “Those who expressed other preferences are no less patriotic. Before long, their anxieties will be addressed realistically. All of us will be involved in the reconstruction project. The collective interest of the state must be our paramount focus.”
The new governor hinged his success on the blueprint, which the committee he inaugurated two months ago, Strategic Development and Policy Implementation Committee, submitted to him. He disclosed that the “blueprint is anchored on five cardinal programmes, which are popularly known as our Platforms for Change (JMPPR): Job creation through agriculture, entrepreneurship and industrialization. “Massive infrastructural development and maintenance, provision of functional education and technological growth; provision of accessible and qualitative health care and social delivery; and rural development and community extension services.” However, Akeredolu noted that the current economic recession and financial constraints would pose a challenge in actualizing all his administration’s plans for the people. Nonetheless, he posited that with adequate focus on transforming the current socio-economic situation of the state, coupled with proper utilization of all available resources, the state would peak on sustainability in the short, medium and long term. “We are looking at building on our existing relationships with local and international development partners,” he said, imploring foreign and local investors to come to the state. He assured them of maximum security. “It is, indeed, a brand new day. With the assistance of the Almighty God and the people of Ondo State, we hope to take the state out of the morass of privation, hopelessness and desperation. The welfare of our people shall be the fundamental objective and directive principle of governance in Ondo State,” he said. While paying tributes to the party leaders, guests and all his supporters, Akeredolu said, “On behalf of our state, I pay tribute to Governor Olusegun Abdulraman Mimiko for his several years of service to Ondo State.” Meanwhile, Mimiko, his immediate predecessor, had assured the people of the state that he was leaving the state, after the expiration of his eight years tenure, in good hands.

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