You all probably know the saying “a one eyed man is KING in the kingdom of the blind”. This saying in question is the best way I could describe our dear country Nigeria. The states of our country are the kingdom of the blind and the governors of these states are the “ONE EYED MEN”!
For the purpose of emphasis, I am going to be using Governor Adams Oshiomole as my case study for today.
So I recently stumbled upon a piece of news that said Governor Adams Oshiomole (current Edo State governor) accused Former Edo State governor, Lucky Igbinedion and his billionaire father Gabriel Igbinedion of converting state property to their family use while he was governor.
In response to Oshiomole, Lucky released a statement saying “Oshiomole is biggest thief in Edo state as of today”. He refuted allegations of corruption, stating that documents pertaining to his tenure as governor of the state were open for public scrutiny. He said Oshiomole should explain to residents of the state what he has done with the trillions of federal and state allocations he collected over the years. Read the full statement here!!
I am not writing this post to support Lucky Igbinedion. We all know he was the worst governor any state could have ever had but my question is “Is Oshiomole really any better?”
Let me dissect it a little so you all can understand.
In 2008 when Oshiomole took over as governor of Edo state, the state was in disarray. Lucky had been governor for eight years before that and did absolutely nothing for the betterment of the state. The roads were still tacky, infrastructure were poor, no light, water and the list goes on and on.
After Oshiomole took over, he carried out some obvious tasks one of which was fixing up a major attraction in the capital city known as RING ROAD.
Ring road before the revamp was used as housing by touts and “agberos” but one of Oshiomole’s first task in office was to restore that tourist attraction to the people of Edo state who of course did not go unappreciative to his contribution.
Then he began working on a major road in Edo State known as Airport Road. The airport road connects Federal Roads linking to Lagos and Delta states on each end.
He also built a few schools for communities and constructed more roads that were mostly situated in a part of Benin known as the “Government Reserved Area (GRA).
Everyone went ecstatic when these developments started arising.
For a very long time, no one had been able to drive on the roads in Benin City without entering into a pot hole or basically damaging their car, a few schools were built and all in good working condition which made the people very excited and as expected, they praised Oshiomole as their Lord and Savior.
Fast forward four years later, airport road was not yet completed, other roads in Benin City were yet to be constructed and then Oshiomole campaigned for re-election and won with a landslide.
Just to do a quick recap of Oshiomole’s first four years in office. He revamped Ring Road, began construction on airport road, built “a few” schools and constructed a few roads in GRA. That’s it?
Now going back to the saying about a one eyed man being king in the land of the blind, for a state that had been through the worst in the hands of its previous governor, anything pretty much goes. Regardless of how little the incoming governor would contribute, when being compared to the unresponsive tenure of the previous governor, he will indeed be seen as a hero and veteran.
Next year will mark Oshiomole’s last year in office making a total of eight years and believe me when I say there is still so much work left to be done and yet a lot of money has been spent and frankly the people of Edo state need to know where all of that money went.
We all saw what former governor Babatunde Fashola was able to achieve with the entire Lagos state during his tenure yet Oshiomole could not fix all the roads in GRA in eight years?
Bear in mind that the entire GRA of Edo state can be compared to one-third of Lekki Phase 1 in Lagos state yet Oshiomole couldn’t perfect every single road in it?
And when I talk about the roads in GRA, I am not talking about Etete or Boundary roads. I am speaking of the roads in Second Ugbor or those off Sapele road and a host of other undeveloped roads in GRA. Those roads are terrible and some of them have not even been tarred and for those that have, there are no drains to sift the flood when it rains.
If these supposed “big man areas” of Edo state could be in such disgruntling state, one can only imagine how the poorer communities in Edo state would be like. I am talking about areas like Upper Sakponba and Ikpoba Hill. As much as some of the major roads in those areas have been fixed, woe betide you if you are around those areas when it rains and pours.
Due to the lack of drainage systems, the water have no where to go thereby obstructing the free passage of vehicles and pedestrians.
And then there is the issue of light in Edo state.
I was watching the news recently and a resident in Ekenwa was complaining about buying five thousand (5,000) naira NEPA card over six months ago and had still not exhausted it.
How terrible could the light situation be if one cannot exhaust 5,000 naira NEPA card in six months?
And then the situation of the other towns and villages in Edo state outside Benin City are absolutely nothing to write home about. Villages like Okada, Akuke, Ogbe, Igarra and Uromi – just to mention a few.
Even though he may not have been able to construct the roads in all of these towns and villages during his tenure, he could have at least tried to fix the major roads linking to these places so as to increase their accessibility. After all, they are all a part of the Heartbeat of Nigeria; Edo State.
In his response to Oshiomole’s accusation, Lucky mentioned the federal allocations and internal generated revenues running into trillions of naira which Oshiomole has received so far during his tenure and also asked him to explain how he spent all the money.
I am an indigene of Oredo Local government, Benin City, Edo State and I too demand answers as to where, when and how all of those monies where spent because from where I am sitting, Adams Oshiomole has not done enough for Edo state to be termed a hero or veteran. He really does need to prove his case.
Back again to the saying about the one eyed man, it is apparent that as a result of the sufferings the people of Edo state had to endure in the hands of their former governor, they ended up settling for whatever they could find (no matter how little) that is supposedly better than their previous encounter.
But, enough is enough! Me and my people deserve better. No more promises, No more propaganda, No more politics. Enough is enough!
Are you an indigene of Edo state? What’s your opinion on Oshiomole’s administration?
Feel free to comment, share your opinion and suggestions.
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