New Telegraph

Open letter to Osun State Governor, Ademola Adeleke

August 25, 2023

Dear Gov. Adeleke I t is well about nine months that you have been in office. I believe it’s a convenient time to congratulate you on the birth of your new administration. I doubt it has been the easiest journey, but I hope our many feedbacks and constant scrutiny was perceived as necessary to bath a safe and healthy government. As another governorship candidate who conceived the same leadership intentions as you did, arguably the youngest governorship candidate Nigeria may have produced, I believe I bring to governance a perspective that mimics today’s reality and the desire of most of the population.

However, my preparations for leadership also led me to an in-depth fact-finding mission, grassroots campaign, town hall meetings, and consultations with technocrats for local adaptation. I have decided in good faith and in the best interest of the state to share my manifesto with you. My campaign has five cardinal points: Employment, Healthcare, Education, Infrastructure and Security. In this letter I will mostly address the issue of unemployment in the state, especially in the informal sector. Broadly speaking, my intention is to look at the state as 31 local government areas to ensure balance in my interventions and optimise the comparative advantage of each area. My frontal approach to unemployment was tagged I-employment (Integrated employment).

My goal was to restructure the informal sector; gradually integrate them into the tax net while leveraging on their skill set to reduce unemployment. I had met with about 30 associations which included tailors, photographers, bakers, NATA and many others, my plan was for each association through their members, train about 10 people per association per LG (10*30*31) this will involve a 6/8-month skill acquisition programme, a one month business training at a vocational institute to learn the business side of their acquired skill and also earn a certificate of completion. For the trainers who subscribe to this scheme they will be offered 1. A contributory pension plan. 2.

Health insurance coverage. 3. Subsidise secondary to university education for their child(ren). If well-structured, after four years, the state would have produced a minimum of 40,000 registered “empowered” skilled workers which can form our home grown small or nano scale enterprise positioned to provide service, address poverty, and reduce occupational immobility in the state. An important caution is to make sure trainees are NOT graduates looking for temporary placements or skill acquisition but people who otherwise will not have been engaged. A common request among the associations is a union house, I would provide a wellequipped building at the state capital for all the unions to facilitate collaboration, training, and auditing in the sector. A mechanic village will be provided for NATA with an intention to encourage adequate and structured training for optimum service delivery to automobile users in the state.

The lack of anchoring institutions in the state may forestall employment in the formal sector. I believe creating productive institutions should be a priority for your administration. I would be deliberate about attracting companies like GSK and other companies who are on their way out of the country. Also, investing in research can spur innovations, especially for academic researchers and the young innovators e.g., our labs should be able to produce basic equipment for our hospitals etc. I have also seen a rising interest of people in the diaspora who desire to create businesses in Nigeria. My administration through an efficient liaison office would actively sort after such groups and provide the most efficient, transparent, and seamless ease of registration, investment and doing business. Osun State has an enormous capacity to feed the country but only an agrarian state on paper. I had met with a few owners of farm settlements across the state, and the denominator of their plight was absence of support from the government.

Bush clearing was a common complaint and my plan was to support them in a meaningful way, there is a viable tomato plantation along Iwo Osogbo Road, a lot of palm oil processing at Oba Oke, Gbongan, Ile Ogbo etc. Fish production in Ore (Odo Otin LG) is a viable source of agricultural potential for the state. In the short term, increasing the value chain of our produce and working with agro allied businesses can yield quick results. Our tourism potential across the state could be our way out of reliance on the Federal Government for nuts and survival. The topography of Oke Ila, Asi at Odo-Otin and Imesi Ile area of Ijesha land are sceneries people will break a limb to view, asides the existing Ile Ife, Osogbo, Erin Ijesha tourism sites. The global tourism industry is currently worth about $2.2 billion waiting for Osun to add its own quota.

Dr. Ademola Bayonle (DAB),
Governorship Candidate (YPP)

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