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2022 Ramadan lecture: Makinde reiterates commitment to religious harmony, peaceful co-existence in Oyo

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Oyo State Governor,’ Seyi Makinde on Tuesday, reaffirmed the commitment of his administration to sustaining religious harmony and peaceful coexistence in the state.

 

The Governor, who stated this while delivering a keynote address at the 8th annual Omi tuntun Ramadan lecture, held at the Government House Arcade, Agodi, Ibadan, explained that nobody can divide Oyo State people along religious lines.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor,  Taiwo Adisa,  indicated that Governor Makinde also denied insinuations that his administration has been unfair to the Muslim community in Ogbomoso zone.

The governor maintained that the people of the Oyo state have grown and evolved through a family system that easily blends Muslims with Christians in harmonious coexistence.

He pledged to continually uphold a religiously unbiased Oyo State.

The governor recalled that the day the first edition of the Ramadan lecture was held, the current State under ex-Governor Rashidi Ladoja also turned the sod on the Circular Road, but lamented that nine years after, the 110km road remained uncompleted.

“One expects that even the 32km should have been completed, they did not even do 3km including the bridges before we came into office. But we thank God today that Kabiyesi is with us, not even as High Chief but as Olubadan of Ibadanland. Very soon, I am sure we will invite the Olubadan when the road is ready for commissioning,” he said.

He also promised to provide a conducive atmosphere that will ensure that the masses and politicians cohabit peacefully.

The Governor said: “There are two things I must address so that it won’t look as if we are shying away from those issues.”One of them is the issue of appointments. Some critics said we sidelined Muslims in Ogbomoso. But I want to say that as things stand in Oyo State of today, I am sure that there is nothing that can divide us as far as religion is concerned. If some people think they can achieve division, it is not possible.

 

“Concerning the Ogbomoso appointment, I tried to go down the memory lane and all the senators we have in the 9th Assembly are Muslims – Kola Balogun from Oyo South; Teslim Folarin from Oyo Central and Fatai Buhari from Oyo North, which I see as the will of God and that of the people.

“In the 8th Senate, the same thing transpired. They were not appointed because they were Muslims but because it was the will of God and the wish of the people of the state.

“So, I want to urge our leaders and clerics to always ask for correct data when some critics come to you with erroneous data.

“On the Hajj pilgrimage, we will send few people to go on the journey.”

In their lectures, the guest lecturers, Alfa Uthmah Sannu Sheu and chairman of pilgrims welfare board (Muslim wing) Professor Sayeed Malik unanimously charged the Governor not to dash the people’s hope, and to ensure he fulfills promises made to the people at all times.

The clerics commended Governor Makinde for embarking on the projects that will bring development to all the nooks and crannies of the state.

Also in their goodwill messages, the father of the day, Aare Musulumi of Yorubaland, Edo, and Delta States, Alhaji Daud Makanjuola, and chairman of the event, former Governor Rasheed Ladoja amongst others, acknowledged that Governor Makinde’s disposition to matters of religion remained commendable

The Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Mohood Lekan Balogun, and the chief imam of Ibadanland, Sheik Abdulganiy Agbotomokekere, Muslim clerics, government functionaries as well as other dignitaries graced the event.

 

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Corps member empowers ex-convicts in Ekiti, warns against stigmatisation

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A serving corps member in Ekiti State, Anuoluwa Elizabeth Balogun, has empowered ex-convicts in the state with tools in various skills, as her Personal Community Development Service (CDS) project in the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC).

Balogun, whose passion was borne out as a result of the numerous psychological challenges ex-convicts faced when released from prison, such as stigmatisation, discrimination, isolation, and instability, embarked on the seamless project to make an impact in her immediate environment.

The ex-convicts were presented with the tools at the one-day sensitisation programme tagged “Sensitisation of the Public Against Stigmatisation of the Ex-Convicts,” in Ado-Ekiti, on Wednesday.

Balogun said that the project is to rehabilitate, reform and reintegrate the ex-convicts, while urging the Federal Government and other relevant stakeholders to map out programmes towards their proper reintegration into the society.

She added that during her pre-release counselling sessions with the ex-convicts, she discovered that the various offenses they committed were as a result of poverty and improper upbringing.

According to her, “This project is set to rehabilitate, reform, and reintegrate a sizeable number of ex-convicts in Ekiti State. It is a smaller version of the big institution I have in mind, which the Federal Government and the State Government should take up, being also ably supported by individuals in the society.

“During the one month pre-release counselling sessions with the inmates, with the professional services, I realised that most of the crimes committed was as a result of poverty, poor upbringing and a bad influence.

“It is on this note that I urge the government to have a well structured rehabilitation centre for them in the custodial centre, so that the psychology of the name is not just being changed but a lot being changed about them by getting them upskilled with also a lot of therapy sessions.”

On her part, the NYSC Ekiti State Coordinator, Mary Chikezie, lauded the efforts of Balogun noting that it is in tandem with the reasons behind the formation of the scheme.

Chikezie enjoined the public to assist corps members who are embarking in their personal CDS projects while urging them to desist from stigmatising ex-convicts.

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ECOWAS Youth Council appoints Osungbade youth ambassador

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The Youth Council of the Economic Community of West African States (EYC), has announced the appointment of Osungbade Akeem as its youth ambassador.

This was made known in a letter released recently by the president of EYC, Ambassador Seun Williams, and seen by Tribune Online.

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The letter stated, “This appointment is not unconnected to his laudable antecedents, hardwork and diligence in the area of service to humanity even in the face of oppression and intimidation.

“As a relentless crusader of promoting entrepreneurship for African youths, we are optimistic of his positive impacts in the region and organisation.”

Ambassador Osungbade Akeem, when reached for comments on his appointment, stated that, “Service to humanity is one that I’ve dedicated my life and this is just a call for more innovative actions that would create values among West African youths. I’m glad to accept this as a challenge.”

Akeem is the founder and CEO of Cyberxox, a remote website, application and logo designing agency. He is also the Head of Marketing of Cudium, a cross-border payment technology company.



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