Governor Ademola Adeleke who was elected as the fifth executive governor of Osun State on July 16th 2022 after he defeated the incumbent, Adegboyega Oyetola of the All Progressives Congress (APC) was sworn in to office on November 27th 2022 at Osogbo Township stadium with a lot of fanfare by his supporters and residents of the state.
After he was sworn in, Adeleke took some drastic steps to ensure that his administration starts on the right footing to rebuild the state to what is suitable and conforms to his electoral promises which are; good welfare for workers and pensioners; boosting the state’s economy; home-grown infrastructure policy; people-focused policy on education, affordable Health Care, security and social welfare and agro-based industrialization for Wealth and Job Creation.
He also highlighted policies that his administration will focus on including those in education, agro-industrial reform, tourism, women and youth development, health, climate change and ICT, local government reforms, public service reform and security.
However, many opined that Adeleke’s administration started with a drastic approach to governance by the introduction of six ‘Executive Orders’ which he issued during his inauguration.
The Executive Orders are; the freezing of state bank accounts, staff audit to ascertain the numbers of government workers in their various Ministries, Departments, Agencies, Commissions, Boards and Parastatals; nullification of all employments made by Oyetola after the July 16th 2022 election, reverse of all appointment like Permanent Secretaries, rectors among others, suspension of all traditional monarch appointed by Oyetola after the election and setting up of review committees to look at the activities of the past administration.
The orders affected many workers as it threw the new bride of Adeleke’s government in the eye of the storm. Similarly, Adeleke’s suspension of monarchs, which affected the traditional rulers of Ikirun, Iree and Igbajo was one of the controversies recorded in the beginning of Adeleke’s administration after he ordered them to vacate the palace and directed security operatives to take over, which was welcomed with pockets of protests.
Despite the condemnation that trailed the executive orders, especially the sacking and dethronement of monarchs, he did not rescind his decision. He attempted to rename the state from ‘State of Osun’ which was passed into law under the administration of Rauf Aregbesola in the Osun House of Assembly to ‘Osun State’ but the move was blocked by the state assembly.
All these did not sit well with many as the opposition party, All Progressives Congress (APC) and Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) held that he intends to run a vindictive government by stepping on nerves few hours after his inauguration. Below are some of the things that have happened in Adeleke’s first 100 days in office.
Adeleke announced three appointments on the eve of his inauguration; naming Kassim Akinleye as the Chief of Staff, Teslim Igbalaye as Secretary to the State and Olawale Rasheed was appointed as the spokesperson to the governor.
He also constituted four committees in line with his executive orders namely; Staff audit/Appointments/ Promotion, State Assets Inventory and Recovery, Contract and Chieftaincy matter committees.
No Significant Project
Meanwhile, in just 100 days of Governor Adeleke in office, he did not embark on any significant project other than constituting committees and reviewing past errors and bobby traps set for his administration by Oyetola’s government.
He launched his 100 days programme for the state in January where he stated he will make provision of portable water in 332 towns, one per ward, and complete renovation of 30 schools, one per local government area.
Others include the rehabilitation of 332 primary health care centres, one in each of the 332 wards in the state; enrollment of 3000 Osun Citizens in the Health Insurance Scheme free-of-charge; rehabilitation of selected deplorable roads, and implementation of ICT/tech innovations programme.
A civil society, Osun Shall Rise Again (OSRA) through its chairman, Lanre Akeju, told THE WHISTLER that the sacking of Adeleke as the governor by Tribunal put him under pressure to start haphazard projects to be delivered to residents of Osun within his 100 days.
Allegations Against Oyetola’s Administration
Adeleke’s government alleged that while Oyetola’s government was leaving office, government property including vehicles and other valuables were carted away as he tasked a committee headed by Dr Basir Salam to embark on a recovery mission of those properties.
However, Oyetola through his spokesperson, Ismail Omipidan denied the allegation, stating that all government properties in the care of the past administration were properly handed over and there was no case of stealing when the inventory was taken.
But according to the Chairman of the Asset Recovery Committee, Dr Bashir Salami, assorted vehicles valued at N2.9 billion were taken away by Oyetola’s political appointees.
Salami said the ex-governor alone had 11 vehicles ranging from Lexus Jeep, Toyota Prado jeeps and assorted models of costly vehicles, while his wife, Mrs Kafayat also had in her possession several brands of governments vehicles which were taken away against provisions of the law.
The chair added that a serving Senator, Adelere Adeyemi Oriolowo, as head of a state agency, stole five machines namely a motor grader, bulldozer, and soil compactor machine among others, and was directed to return them to Osun State Agricultural Development Programme.
However, Oriolowo denied the claim and demanded N500 million compensation and an apology from Governor Ademola Adeleke over the claim that he stole machines and transformers while he headed the agency.
The findings and activities over the stolen Osun assets are yet to be revealed as at the time of filing this report.
Killings and Thuggery
No fewer than five personnel of the Western Security Outfit, code-named Amotekun, were reportedly attacked by political thugs allegedly loyal to PDP during Adeleke’s inauguration. The operatives sustained various degrees of injuries and were rushed to hospital.
Following the inauguration, forceful takeover of motor parks by thugs commenced as two policemen sustained gunshot injuries. Hoodlums went on rampage as indiscriminate attacks were launched on different motor parks across the state.
Attacks were carried out at Ilesha, Iwo, Gbongan, Ikirun among others including Osogbo.
Prior to the presidential election, eight members of APC were killed in Ijesa land while a member of PDP was also killed in Ikire during the senatorial campaign of APC in the state.
Meanwhile, the APC leadership through its chairman, Tajudeen Lawal alleged that 15 of its members have so far been killed in the state while PDP caretaker chairman, Dr Adekunle Akindele claimed that 5 of the party’s members had equally been killed.
Similarly, kidnapping cases were recorded. Cases of kidnapping were recorded within one week in January 2023. Although, security operatives waded as they rescued all the victims.
Payment Of Arrears Owed By Aregbesola
Adeleke issued a directive for payment of half of salaries’ arrears and accrued benefits of promotion exercises from 2019 to 2022 in the state.
THE WHISTLER recalls that the administration of Rauf Aregbesola in 2016 introduced half salary in the civil service citing the harsh economic situation in the country which up till the end of tenure in 2018 were not paid.
Adeleke through the office of Head of Service, Osun State, Mr Ayanleye Aina in a circular dated January 31st also announced that contributory pensions owed would be cleared.
The circular read in part, “the immediate payment of arrears of half salaries for January, 2016. Subsequent payment of arrears of half salaries once in a quarter beginning with the second quarter of year 2023;
“Monthly payment of arrears of half salaries to Contributory Pensioners (State and Local) who have not received their bonds with effect from February, 2023.
“Payment of four (4) months outstanding deductions (May and June, 2019, February, 2020 and October, 2022) starting with the immediate payment of May 2019 deduction and the other three (3) months deductions at once per quarter; and Cash backing of the years 2019 to 2022 promotion exercises.”
Adeleke has been commended by residents of the state for payment of the arrears which Oyetola failed to pay during his administration. He was scored very high in that area and the action was believed to have contributed to the victory of PDP in Osun during the presidential election.
Opposition, CSOs Rate Adeleke
The Osun APC through its chairman, Tajudeen Lawal, described the 100 days of Adeleke as marred by poor performance.
He described Adeleke’s first 100 days as uneventful, and unpalatable, alleging that humongous sums to the tune of N90 billion accrued to the state’s coffers were lavishly spent and unaccounted for in the last three months.
He described Adeleke’s scorecard across sectors of the economy as a monumental failure. He berated him for sacking 1,500 teachers employed by Oyetola and 10,000 youths of the Osun Youth Empowerment Scheme (OYES) as he replaced the scheme with Imole Youth Corps.
Lawal noted that 500 health workers employed by the Oyetola government were sacked, and the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) in the state was scrapped and promptly replaced with Park Managers, adding that the Osun Meal operators for free food in the state were dissolved.
Meanwhile, Adeleke believes that he did well in his first 100 days. He assured the residents of Osun of good governance through improved infrastructure and human development, saying he has perfected programmes to make life easy for citizens of the state.
Also, the Coalition of Civil Society groups in Osun state under the aegis of The Osun Mastermind (TOM) said they have monitored Adeleke closely and observed that he recorded success in some areas and failed in others.
The group through its Executive Director, Professor Wasiu Oyedokun-Alli, said “It is noteworthy and highly commendable that within his first 100 days in office, he has started righting the wrongs of salary modulation of the Aregbesola administration. We commend the Governor for daring to do the right thing despite paucity of funds. We note with delight that the action is contributing in no small measure to the welfare of civil servants in the State.
“We also commend the Governor’s remobilization of contractors to the Osogbo-Ilaodo boundary road construction. The project being a strategic one is for the continued development of our dear State, and it has to be sustained to full completion so that the State and all communities on the route are able to fully enjoy the intended benefits of that road.”
Oyedokun-Alli tasked Adeleke to make public the findings of committees he set up to investigate activities of the past administration as no outcomes have been heard especially on the monarch, contract and mining review committees.
They also lamented the spate of killings and political attacks in the state in his first 100 days in office, urging that the state government in partnership with security operatives must tame the menace.