MUYIWA MAKINDE(JAGUN OLUBADAN OF IBADAN LAND)|BRO PAUL ADEBANJO~REPORTER
The Jagun Olubadan of Ibadan Land, Chief Muyiwa Makinde, is The elder brother of Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State. During interview/press briefing, the lawyer and politician explains with PACESETTER NEWS CREW the effort of Governor Seyi Makinde to reposition the state.
THE INTERVIEW/PRESS BRIEFING EXCERPTED FROM PACESETTER MAGAZINE IS STATED IN THE BELOW-WRITTEN PARAGRAPHS.
Q. Governor Seyi Makinde has started his administration in the State on a fast lane with developmental projects he has embarked on despite paucity of fund. Can he surpass this in the next two years?
A. Without being immodest as far as I am concerned, he has really tried but I know Oyo State people have not seen his best. I know some of the programs he has for the people, I know how passionate he is about making Oyo State a Pacesetter State. Besides, I know how he has been working assiduously and round the clock to make sure that the state is secured, better economically and being at the forefront of the four cardinal programs he promised the electorates when he was campaigning. I have faith in God that Oyo State will be better.
I am not surprised like I always tell people. He is a consummate goal getter; he is someone that pursues whatever he believes in to the end. If you look at his antecedents even in politics; some would have fallen by the way side after contesting three times before he won in 2019.So, he’s somebody that sets a goal for himself and pursue it passionately with all he has in his power and most times even if you look at his business life he always plan and at end of the day he always achieve it.I can convince you and say that again that by God’s grace , “Oyo State will have Seyi Makinde’s name written in GOLD by the time he finishes his tenure”.
Q. What role do you play in ensuring his success?
A. He is a very good listener, as a brother, I call him and I talk to him. You know most times, what people don’t know about him is that he doesn’t do things for doing sake. Most times when he is confronted with a superior fact, he would give in. but you cannot go to him on frivolities.
He would give you the facts. I can give you a lot of examples, when people were locked down because of COVID-19, I asked him why he was not enforcing a lockdown in the state. He said if we locked down the state, you are only locking down peoples’ means of livelihood. What we would need to do was that let those experts give us data on how things are to be done.
He added, he would not lock down this state.
During the time of EndSars protest, he was told to declare a curfew but he said no, that he wouldn’t be declaring a curfew because the evils were being done during the day not at night. He said it is an antidote to problems.Most of his decisions are driven by facts and scientific data to some people who don’t know him, they always thing he’s strict.
Q. How is he managing frictions with some of those who claimed to have helped him clinch victory in the last election?
A. Politics is a game of interest. Once your interest is outside the interest of certain people you have frictions. But, what matters mostly in politics is the ability to manage those frictions, the interest of different people. I can assure you that everybody is working round the clock to see that those who are aggrieved genuinely, who have one or two things to grind because of that is going on are brought back. But let me tell you the real issue; there are ways things were done before, so if there is going to be a change, definitely people will react.
What we are seeing in most cases are reactions to those changes. What we will continue to do is that those changes should be human face so that it will be all inclusive and people will continue to smile. And you can see that all what he’s preaching now is that those who have not seen anything will start seeing and those that have been seeing will continue to enjoy.
Q. Some are already saying he will be there till 2027. Will he seek a re-election in 2023?
A. He was brought in by the people, it’s only the people that can tell him to go for a second term. He is not possessed about second term, and nobody can threaten him about second term. They’ve tried him and by 2023, if the people still want him for a second term, he will.
He hasn’t even told anybody that he’s going for a second term. What he has been preaching is that he wants to serve the people with the mandate they entrusted in him. So, he believes that for him, second term is not an obsession. What is paramount to him are the projects that would outlive him and that will make the people of Oyo State to be where they ought to be. Those are the things that are Paramount to him not second term.
Q. Some have criticized his approach in infrastructural development. They said the length of time given to investors to own some projects the solely financed is too long. What is your comment on this?
A. One of those projects is the Lekan Salami Sport Complex. Unfortunately when we started that project, oppositions were calling us names. They asked if that is our priority when people are hungry. But we thank God they are commending us today.
The people of the state keep wondering where the funds for these projects are coming from since many states are broke in Nigeria.As entrepreneur, I have seen him talking to many of friends on how to move the state forward. Makinde believes the only way you can make it in life is to think outside the box.
Many of the projects are being carried out with Alternative Funding Approach.
The alternative funding approach is not new in Nigeria lexicon but he started it here. By the time you look at the qualities of those projects, and when the projects are delivered, people would marvel. He is not doing anything extra-ordinary.
He said it many times that he had blocked loop holes where the money are passing through to the wrong hands. Even if he had done that, I know there are leakages. After blocking the leakages, he is sitting down to reflect on how to spend money prudently.How will you explain that in two years, he had paid pensioner about N11.6billion? When in eight years, the previous government owed pensioners about N56billion. He has also promised that by the time he is completing this first term in 2023, no single pensioner will be owed. Once he says something, hold him accountable.So, it is getting your priorities right and ensuring things are done the right way. You cannot see him receiving kickback from any contractor. No kickback from anybody. You are expected to bring your money to do the projects. He is saving the state a lot of money and a lot of agony.
Even when he came on board and he was paying salaries regularly, some people were telling me he was borrowing money.But for those of us, we knew he was not borrowing money. I went to him during COVID-19 lock down to know how he was paying salaries; and due to economy melt down in the country I asked if the state would have the provision to continue with this prompt payment. He told me workers salary is the first because that brings motivation and triggers the good work to continue.
The workers can’t continue suffering and we should be expecting good work to continue. Or how would they take care of their households even at this critical time? He added, we are prepared for this government and the masses is our priority.
We have taken proactive steps to cushion any improntu incident that could negatively affect the wellness of Oyo state people. We shall ensure workers get paid timely. He gave me the assurance that our people will continue to receive their salaries before the end of every month.
Q. As a brother to the Governor, will you ask for review of the period of time given to the Contractor handling Agbowo Shopping Complex?
A. I was privileged to look at the design of Agbowo Shopping Complex and I know the massive infrastructural development in the place. If the government had done this about 15 years ago, 15 years would have gone by now. If well executed, it will definitely outlive this administration and Oyo State will be better for it.
So, you have to look at the amount those people are pumping into the project. It is a complete redesign and by the time it is completed, it would be one of the best. I think this worth it.
Q. What has helped the Governor to manage security challenges in local areas of Ibadan?
A. You journalists told us (Ibadan chiefs) to relocate to our local areas. Truly, we know the thugs. That is why I am one of those agitating for state and community policing. I will invite you to visit me in my office at Baba Isale area of Ibadan. It is a remote area. You will see those guys.
When I newly got to the area, I used to see them with their cutlasses in the morning and at night. Those areas are terrorized but in recent time after we engaged them, residents are very happy because the area is now peaceful. We understand there is an issue of unemployment.Recently, the Commissioner for Youths and Sports Development also brought those guys together at Beyeruka and talk to them.
But Nigeria generally has security issue which is a problem. It is a general problem in the country but I know we will overcome it. Just like I used to tell people, our governor is scientific in nature. He will surely overcome it in the state.
Q. In the next two years, how do you see Governor handle deliverables?
A. There are two people I tell that they are condemned to perform; the governor and the senator representing Oyo South, Senator Kola Balogun. But I know two of them will perform, in fact, they are performing.
Two years down the lane, have you seen any tangible project they have done?
Adamasingba stadium, Moniya-Iseyin road, hospitals that are being built, Akala expressway, and other meaningful projects in the state are ongoing. I was at Akala express road recently and somebody just approach me and said the road was not passable for eight years of Ajimobi and in two years, Makinde fixed it.
Payment of salaries to Makinde is not an achievable but to some of us, it is an achievement because it is boosting the economy of the state. Some bankers are now approaching civil servants to give them loan. Many of them are now buying blocks to complete their houses.
They are all going to market every month. They are engaging bricklayers, welders, artisans in general. That is why the economy is moving and that is why in Oyo State is better compared to what we used to have. I can reel out more than 33 projects that have been completed and ongoing and I know it will be completed before September this year.
A. Life without our mother has not been easy.
Q How, when are you not underage?
A. Yes, we are not underage. During the COVID-19, The Governor was in isolation when he contracted coronavirus and I was also admitted in hospital because I was sick, which mean two of her sons were in hospital. But do you know that even with that age, she is the one cooking for us.
She would cook Amala and bring it for us in the hospital.
At times, she would call me to ask about my brother’s health because she knew the Governor may not like to tell her the truth about his health. So, what I am trying to say is that she was a mother.
She didn’t treat us like adults but as children. She always ensure we eat once or twice in her house in a week. We really miss her. I couldn’t believe it (when she died) because we spoke in the evening. It was so sudden! The following morning, one of her house helps just called me that they have been calling mama and she didn’t open her door.
She was a mother and a bridge builder. She wouldn’t allow rancor in the family. She had a trick to talk to all her children. In my own case, she would tell me ‘Jagun you know I listen to you. Even if someone is not a good man and you asked me to talk to him you know I usually oblige you’.
And anytime I hear that, as her son, I would do whatever she wanted me to do. If she wanted to take something from the Governor, she would say; ‘you know both of us would have died during your birth?’ So, she knew how to talk to everyone of us to fall in line.
She was generous to a fault. It was after her demise that I know many people were on her scholarship. Most of the money we given her aside her business, she used to send those children on her scholarship to school.
All her prediction came to pass. She told us that none of us would die before her and she also said all of us would make fortune in life. All of us are graduates of different callings and we are doing fine.
She taught us hard work, humility, and self-sufficiency. She taught us not to look at any other persons’ progress in life. Her death is still a surprise to me. I felt I could have gone to sleep in her house. I am still wondering what had happened between the time she called me and the time she slept. But all in all, I thank God for her life.
NOTE:THIS IS AN EXCERPT FROM PACESETTER NEWS.
TRANSCRIBED & EDITED BY EAGLESSIGHTNEWS
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