Category: Government

Oyo rehabilitates Eleyele dam to end frightening flooding in Ibadan, enhance water supply — Ajimobi

The proposed rehabilitation of the Eleyele Dam, in Ibadan, Oyo State capital, will substantially enhance residents’ access to potable water, as well as save the city from frightening flood incidents.

The Governor of the state, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, stated this at a ceremony to flag off the rehabilitation project, held at the premises of the dam, in Eleyele, Oke Badan LCDA, Ibadan, on Friday.

Ajimobi, who was represented by the Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, Chief Isaac Isola, said the rehabilitation project was one of the befitting legacies he wished to be remembered for.

He said that the contractor handling the overhaul of the dam, Messrs CGC-CHWE Joint Venture, and other partners, had been given a maximum of 24 months to complete the project.

The governor explained that the devastating effect of an August 26, 2011 flooding spurred the government into embarking on comprehensive flood control measures across the city, including dredging of river channels and construction of bridges.

Ajimobi said, “One of the major challenges that first confronted this administration upon our assumption of office in 2011 was the devastating flood of August 26, 2011; an unfortunate incident that ravaged many parts of Ibadan.

“This Eleyele Dam, which was approaching its 70th anniversary then, was badly hit, leading to an overflow of the dam and degradation of the appurtenant structures.

“The implication of this was that one of the two fictional values of the Eleyele Dam, which was to help flood control during high flow periods through its reservoir holding capacity, had been compromised!

“Unlike the piecemeal and largely reactive responses of past administrations in the state, we decided to take the bull by the horns in our determined efforts to change the narratives of perennial flooding in Ibadan. The ceremony we are holding today is one of such efforts.

“On completion, the dam will have improved capacity to contain flooding in and around Ibadan. Yet another derivable benefit is that the capacity of the dam to supply treated water to the city of Ibadan and would be greatly boosted.”

In his address, the Commissioner for Finance, Planning and Budget, Mr. Abimbola Adekanmbi, said the contractors and supervising consultants for the project were selected through World Bank standard competitive bidding process.

He explained that the project scope included raising of the dam embankment crest from its existing height of 183.6m to 185.4m ask, erection of 1.0m high concrete parapet wall and increase on the discharge capacity of the spillway from 368.9m3/s to 1269m3/s.

Adekanmbi added that there would also be an increase in the width of the spillway channel to enhance its discharge capacity, rehabilitation of the intake tower in order to fully restore its capacity to supply raw water from the reservoir to the treatment plant, among others.

Gov. Ajimobi Expresses Commitment To Security, Welfare Of NYSC Members

Gov. Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State on Monday said his administration was committed to ensuring adequate welfare and security of members of the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) deployed to the state.

Ajimobi, represented by his deputy, Chief Moses Adeyemo, said this at the swearing-in ceremony of the 2018 batch “A” corps members deployed to the state, at the NYSC Orientation Camp, Iseyin.

He assured the corps members of the warm reception awaiting them in their places of primary assignments.

“I assure you that you will enjoy the warmth and hospitality of the entire people of the state throughout the period of your one-year national service,” he said.

The governor noted that NYSC remained the unifying chord that held the country together.

He said that the scheme provided youths, who prior to its establishment, were strangers to the diverse culture of other parts of Nigeria.

Ajimobi remarked that the orientation programme was designed to inculcate discipline in youths and instill in them a tradition of hard work, integrity and patriotism to Nigeria wherever they were posted.

“To curb the alarming rate of unemployment, you are enjoined to acquire more knowledge through personal development skill acquisition and entrepreneurship development training during the period of orientation course,” he said.

Earlier, the state NYSC’s Coordinator, Mrs Ifeoma Anidobi, said 2,412 corps members were registered, comprising 1143 males and 1269 females.

Anidobi urged the corps members to contribute their quota to the unity, integration and advancement of Oyo state in particular and Nigeria at large.

She advised them to make optimal use of the opportunity provided by NYSC Skill Acquisition and Entrepreneurship Development programme.

The coordinator remarked that the posting policy of corps members to places of primary assignment was tailored towards meeting the felt needs of the state, particularly in agriculture, education, health and rural infrastructure.

“Several activities have been lined up to make the course an exciting one; so take every camp activity seriously, from early morning meditation to lectures, drills and social events.

“You will also have opportunity to showcase your talents during the inter-platoon dance, drama, sporting and skills competitions,” she said.

Anidobi, however, appreciated the Oyo state government and the people of the state for their unflinching support to the NYSC scheme always.

The 2,412 corps members were sworn in by Justice Eni Esan, who represented the Chief Judge of Oyo State, Justice Muktar Abimbola.

Health minister, Durosinmi-Etti, Ajimobi advocate lifestyle change to reduce cancer scourge …FG working towards reducing cost of treatment

Minister of Health, Prof. Isaac Adewole; Radiotherapy and Cancer Specialists, Prof. Abayomi Durosinmi-Etti; Oyo State Governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi and others have advised against carefree habit and lifestyle that promote risk factors to cancer diseases. They gave the advice in separate addresses at the launch of the Oyo State five-year cancer control strategic plan, spanning five years (January 2018 to December 2022), in Ibadan, on Tuesday.

Wife of the state governor and founder of Access to Basic Medical Care Foundation, Chief Florence Ajimobi, who was the initiator of the project, as well as the state Commissioner for Health, Dr. Azeez Adedutan, said that the strategic plan was aimed at reducing cancer-related incidence and mortality.

In their goodwill messages, Wife of Niger State Governor, Dr. Amina Bello; Chief Medical Director, University College Hospital, Ibadan, Prof. Temitope Alonge; and representative of wife of Kwara State governor, Mr. Lanre Bello, harped on early detection and preventive measures to reduce the cancer scourge.

The minister lauded the state government and ABC Foundation for setting the pace for other states in the country with the cancer control strategic plan, an initiative he said Oyo State pioneered in the country. Adewole, who rued what he called the low level of information and awareness on the debilitating effect of the disease across the country, said that the Federal Government was working hard to cause a significant reduction in the cost of cancer treatment. Although he put the cost at conservatively $2,000 (N734,000) currently in the country, he said it was still a far cry to the $10,000 (N3.7m) it cost to treat cancer in neighbouring Ghana. He said that the FG would have loved to establish more cancer treatment centres across the country, in spite of the prohibitive cost, but was being hampered by competing demands of other life-threatening diseases such as heart diseases, hypertension, kidney failure, cirrhosis, among others.

The minister said, “This is the first time in the history of cancer in Nigeria that a state will make a strategic plan on it. We now know that 40 per cent of cancer can be prevented if we change our habits and lifestyle, while 40 per cent can be cured if detected early. “In nearby Ghana, it cost $10,000 to treat cancer while it cost $2,000 to treat the same disease in Nigeria. But, even at that amount, it is still expensive for our people. We are working hard to make the treatment affordable. “It is also advisable to localize this cancer plan, as this will be strategic to its success. Involvement of the local government administrations and other health platforms like the Primary Health Care should be integrated into the programme.”
In his keynote, Durosinmi-Etti, who was the pioneer chief medical director of the National Hospital, Abuja, identified smoking, excessive alcohol intake, albinos’ exposure to sun and excessive body weight as some of the habits and lifestyles that promote cancer. He said, “We need to pay attention to the spread of cancer in Nigeria in order to bring it to a near zero level. From research, we discovered that breast and cervical cancer account for 50 per cent of female mortality. “Apart from Gombe, Ibadan is the only state in Nigeria with facilities to treat cancer and this call for absolute readiness to campaign for prevention rather than treatment. 33 per cent cure is sure with prevention and early detection. “But, if people will just be careful about their habits and lifestyles, such as smoking, excessive drinking, exposure to paint and asbestos chemicals, excessive weight and obesity, as well as exposure to the sun in the case of albinos, there will be a significant reduction in cancer incidence.”

Launching the strategic plan, the governor said that the initiative was birthed with the collaborative efforts of the state government and the private sector. Ajimobi stated that effective healthcare system could not be sustained by government alone, but with the support of the private sector, adding that mortality rate attributed to cancer had been alarming and must be nipped in the bud. The governor said, “May I reiterate the fact that effective healthcare service delivery the world over is a joint venture between government and the private sector. It is evident that health cannot be sustained by government’s efforts alone. “As a responsive government, we have taken a preemptive review of the structure of the healthcare system with the requisite intent of meeting the health needs of our people. An extensive restructuring of the sector, which involves the three tiers of service provision across the state is currently on-going. “Permit me to use this opportunity to commend the efforts of my wife, who I unequivocally describe as a philanthropist par excellence. She is a woman with the milk of kindness and concern for the welfare and wellbeing of others. I thank her for this initiative and others before this.”

In her welcome address, the wife of the governor said that the plight of cancer patients informed her decision to play a major role in bringing smiles back to their faces, adding that the plan would harp on prevention of the disease rather than cure. Mrs. Ajimobi hinted that the strategic plan was targeting 500,000 people for screening annually, with 165 centers to be created across the state, while soliciting a special cancer fund to assist cancer patients in the State. She said, “A significant proportion of the citizenry are not aware of cancer, neither are the majority equipped with much-needed information to protect themselves and their loved ones from it, leading to late presentation.

“The strategic plan is targeted at five identified priority areas and will be implemented in two phases over the next five years. Its implementation will also be supervised and coordinated by a steering committee comprising of relevant stakeholders.“Over the next three months, 1,320 nurses across the 33 Local Government Areas of the state will be trained on cancer screening and 165 screening centers (5 in each LGA), capable of screening 500 thousand people annually, will be established. “Although this plan has been designed to be sustainable, there is a need to establish a Cancer Fund to support cancer patients in the state. I am also aware that the State Health Insurance Agency is almost done with plans to incorporate cancer care into all its products and packages.”

Address by the Governor of Oyo State at the launch of the state cancer control strategic plan, April 24, 2018

It gives me great pleasure to be here today. This event marks a turning point in our collective history; the outlook, operationalization and investment in the healthcare service provision in the State most especially when private individuals commit hard-earned meaningful resources to health.
I wish to start with the words of Herbert Spencer which says, “The preservation of health is a duty. Few seem conscious that there is such a thing as physical morality”. Morality being a guiding beacon towards responsibility, I will emphasize, nature has bestowed this responsibility on us.

As a responsive government, we have taken a preemptive review of the structure of the healthcare system with the requisite intent of meeting the health needs of our people. An extensive re-structuring of the sector which involves all the three tiers of service provision across the State is currently on-going. Reappraisal of human and material resources within the sector has given room to appropriate re-alignment to put the State on an improved stead in this regard.
It is in the light of this that today’s event is pivotal to this goal and pleasing to my heart. Lewis Carroll, a British writer once said, “One of the deepest secret of life is that all that is really worth doing is what we do for others”. Words of John Adams, the 2ndPresident of the United States further stress this; “If we do not lay out ourselves in the service of mankind, whom do we serve?”

Esteemed guests, I wish to acknowledge with great pleasure, various levels of contribution culminating in this desire to stem the tide of non-communicable diseases, especially cancers from our communities. This bottom up arrangement, I expect, will bring to bear concerted efforts of Government and various partners on the people in need.
May I reiterate the fact that effective healthcare service delivery the world over is a joint venture between Government and the private sector. It is evident that health cannot be sustained by Government’s efforts alone. A lot can be achieved by a collective will backed by significant action which can bring about remarkable impetus to the system. Today’s occasion is thus a right step in the right direction. It is my belief that we have evolved to such a level that we can give back to the system that nurture us.

As such, we are gathered to reflect on our society, analyze our potentials and provide veritable support to alleviate pains and enshrine a process which will outlast this generation. Thus, I envision that our actions of today will be indelible in the hearts of men, generations yet unborn. I hereby call on all to join wholeheartedly in this dream and support without constraints.

Ladies and Gentlemen, at this juncture, I hereby launch the Oyo State Cancer Control Strategic Plan (2018-2022) to the Glory of the Almighty and the benefit of mankind. I thank you all.

Oyo kicks off 70-year-old Eleyele dam project

After 70 years, Oyo State Government has jump-started the practical solution to the perennial flooding in Ibadan with Eleyele Dam rehabilitation.Under the project, the government has awarded the joint venture contract to Messrs CGC-CHWE as contractor while Tractebel Consultants is the consultant firm.

The scope of work on the rehabilitation included raising of the dam embankment crest from its existing height of 183.6m to 185.4m ask (1.8m of raising), erection of 1.0m high concrete Parapet wall on the embankment to prevent waves from overtopping embankment and increase on the discharge capacity of spillway from 368.9m3/s to 1269m3/s.

Also, there would be increase in the width of the spillway channel to enhance its discharge capacity, rehabilitation of the intake tower in order to fully restore its capacity to supply raw water from the reservoir to the treatment plant, replacement of all hydro-mechanical equipment inside the intake tower, rehabilitation of the scour tunnel for free discharge of water through the scour channel to spillway return channel and improvement in the access road within the water works premises.

Governor Abiola Ajimobi who flagged off the project stated that the benefits accruable from a rehabilitated modernized Eleyele Dam are enormous. Among them is the improved capacity of the dam to help contain flooding in and around Ibadan. “As a result of rapid urban development in Ibadan, the Eleyele Dam is now located upstream of some densely populated and fully developed parts of the city.

“ Yet another derivable benefit is that the capacity of the dam to supply treated water to the city of Ibadan would be greatly boosted. I can foresee a situation whereby the dam, when delivered, would become a major provider of clean water to support the burgeoning industrial revolution that is fast gaining ground in Ibadan particularly and other parts of Oyo State in general.”

Represented by the State Commissioner for Environment and Water Resources, Chief Isaac Isola, Governor Ajimobi assured that the rehabilitation project would be completed in two years.

Ajimobi said, “One of the major challenges that first confronted this administration upon our assumption of office in 2011 was the devastating flood event of 26th August, 2011, an unfortunate incident that ravaged many parts of Ibadan, consuming in its wake, hundreds of human lives and several million naira worth of properties.“This Eleyele Dam, which was approaching its 70th anniversary then, was badly hit, leading to an overflow of the dam and degradation of the appurtenant structures.”

The implication of this was that, one of the two fictional values of the Eleyele Dam, which was to help flood control during high flow periods through its reservoir holding capacity, had been compromised.

“Even though the dam had earlier been threatened by two major floods in 1963 and 1980, the impact of the 2011 flood event was massive enough to discourage and derail a government of lily-livered office-holders. But that was not for us. As a government, we saw wisdom in coming up with an integrated, comprehensive and enduring solution to the problem of flooding in the city.

“In his address, the Commissioner for Finance and Budget, Mr Abimbola Adekanmbi disclosed that the contractors and supervising consultants were selected through a carefully and competitively bidding process in line with the policies and procedures of the World Bank. He assured stakeholders that the project, from the expertise and resources available to the IUFMP and the relevant partnering MDAs, will ensure qualitative and qualitative and timely delivery of this rehabilitation work.

Ajimobi wants Ibadan butchers relocated to multi-billion naira abattoir

Gov. Abiola Ajimobi of Oyo State has directed butchers in the 11 Local Government Areas of Ibadanland to relocate to the multi-billion naira central abattoir by the end of April.

The governor gave the directive during a stakeholders’ meeting held at the House of Chiefs, at the Secretariat in Ibadan.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the multi-billion naira central abattoir is located in Amosun Village in the Akinyele Local Government Area in Ibadan.

NAN reports that the butchers were led to the meeting by the South-West Coordinator of the Butchers Association, Alhaji Biliaminu Elesinmeta, and the association’s state Chairman, Alhaji Azeez Alagunfon.

Oyo moves against insecurity in troubled zone

The Oyo government says it has put in place measures to address the incessant abductions in the Oke-Ogun area of the state. Consequently, a task force has been raised to tackle the menace.

The Commissioner for Information, Culture and Tourism, Toye Arulogun, stated yesterday in Ibadan that Governor Abiola Ajimobi ordered the establishment of the task force after a series of meetings with farmers, herdsmen, traditional rulers, security agencies and other stakeholders to look into the spate of kidnappings, maiming and clashes between herdsmen and farmers in the zone, noting that the panel had visited the affected area for an on-the-spot assessment.

He noted that the government had mandated security agencies in the state to beef up security and boost intelligence gathering, stating ongoing efforts were yielding result, as some suspected kidnappers had been arrested.

The commissioner observed that improved surveillance had doused the tension in the area, assuring the people that the Ajimobi administration would continue to protect lives and property.

Arulogun said: “The security situation in the state is not as bad as being portrayed by some mischievous individuals. The breach was more from external than internal persons. Our administration is known for peace, safety and security. This is evident in the four-star rating as a well as a qualified state to help foreign and domestic investors given by the Nigerian Investment Promotion Commission (NIPC). Also, the state was adjudged as the fourth best investment-friendly state and one of the only five states that attracted investment to the country in the last quarter of 2017 by the Nigeria Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

“It is based on the peaceful cum secured environment that new businesses are springing up with a renaissance of the night economy in the state and government is getting a lot of investment requests. We cannot allow anything to disrupt the peace in the state and that is the reason the governor set up a taskforce to address the issue of Oke Ogun in addition to the existing security apparatus.

“The security agencies in Oyo are living up to expectation and we should all join hands with them to ensure that security is not breached in the state. We should commend them for their improved intelligence as well as pro-activeness to ensure that the state is not turned to a crisis-torn zone. On our part, government will not fail to provide adequate security for its people and support all the security agencies to perform their duties well.”

Ajimobi urges Christians to pray for Leah Sharibu, peace in Nigeria

Oyo State Governor Abiola Ajimobi has urged Christians to use the occasion of this year’s Easter celebrations to pray fervently for the country to overcome the socio-economic challenges currently confronting it.

In his Easter message issued in Ibadan, yesterday, by his Special Adviser on Communication and Strategy, Mr. Bolaji Tunji, the governor called on Christians to pray for the restoration of peace in all the trouble spots across the country, particularly in the northeast.

Ajimobi asked the faithful to particularly remember to pray for the safe return of the last Dapchi schoolgirl, Leah Sharibu, and the Chibok schoolgirls still in Boko Haram captivity.

He said it was only in an atmosphere of love, togetherness and renewed commitment to the country’s unity that the people could attain the much-desired greatness and appealed to masterminds of terrorism, insurgency, militancy, kidnappings and other acts creating unnecessary tension among the citizenry to embrace amnesty and drop their arms.

“Violence and criminality are ill winds that blow no one any good. There is no religion that is in support of taking people’s lives under whatever guise.

“Therefore, we must put immediate stop to all acts of terrorism, insurgency, militancy and kidnappings in all parts of the country. I am appealing to the perpetrators to take advantage of the amnesty being offered them and drop their arms.

“We should all be promoting activities that will further enhance our peaceful co-existence and unity as a people. It is only under this atmosphere that our dear country can achieve the much-desired greatness,” he stated.

The governor urged Nigerians to emulate Jesus Christ, who he said offered himself as a living sacrifice for the redemption of mankind.

While congratulating Christians on the successful completion of the 40-day fasting, Ajimobi enjoined them to use the occasion to reflect on the essence of the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus Christ, as well as the opportunity it offers them to be closer to their creator.

He added: “Easter is not about wining and dining alone. Rather, it is an occasion to realise that we need to love one another, as exhibited by God, who, out of His love for mankind, offered Jesus Christ to die for our sins and to give life more abundant.

“Let us eschew all divisive tendencies, violence and other things that are antithetical to the teachings of Jesus Christ, which centred on love and compassion for one another.”

The governor commended Christians, Muslims and other religious adherents in the state for their peaceful co-existence, urging them to continue in their prayers for his administration in its quest to ensure better life for all.

‘GBs have improved infrastructure in Oyo schools’

The Oyo State Government yesterday said that the School Governing Boards (SGBs) have arrested infrastructural decay in various secondary schools across the state, saying that over N2bn have been expended by SGBs, philanthropists and old students associations on new buildings, renovation of the old ones, laboratories, ICT centres, chairs, desks and boreholes.

It said that the participatory schools’ management model, the first of its kind in the country introduced by Governor Abiola Ajimobi a year ago, is executing one infrastructural programme or the other in various schools, explaining that out of the N2bn, the SGBs have spent N1.269 billion realized from the N3,000 session fee paid by each student while projects already commissioned put in place by Old Students, philanthropists and corporate organisations stood at about N0.8billion.

The State Commissioner for Education, Science and Technology, Professor Adeniyi Olowofela during a three day expanded stakeholders meeting on Implementation of 2018 State Engagement Plan (SEP) organized by Ministry of Education in collaboration with United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) held at Emmanuel Alayande Resource Centre, Samonda, Ibadan disclosed that the total number of people engaged by Government for this participatory service (SGBs) is 5,652 members for the 628 secondary schools in the state.

Professor Olowofela explained that SGB is made up of nine members who are on voluntary services except the statutory members that are civil servants which include the Principals, who are the secretaries of the Boards, nominees of Council Chairmen and Local Inspector Education (L.I.Es) where the schools are domiciled.

The Commissioner said that the introduction of the SGB was a masterstroke to change the fortune of education in the state, saying, “the SGB has led to renewed rivalry among various old students associations as they are all trying to outdo one another in providing infrastructure for their schools.

During the launch of Education Trust Fund (ETF) in November 2017, the SGB of Government College, Ibadan was honoured as the best SGB and this has in no doubt propelled other SGBs to act.

“Recently, the SGB of Lagelu Grammar School also injected about N250m into the renovation of schools. There are so many SGBs working on renovations of their schools and this is evident in the present state on improved infrastructures as the government also observed that some of the buildings earlier earmarked for rehabilitation have already been renovated by SGBs or Old students.

“Our SGB intervention for schools is a success story and we need to commend various old students association for being part of this laudable achievement to renovate existing buildings, construct new ones, laboratories, ICT centres as well as provision of laboratories equipment, chairs, desks and boreholes,” Professor Olowofela said.

Oyo compensates owners of land acquired for cassava plantation

The Oyo State government has paid compensation to about 77 families whose lands were acquired recently for mass production of cassava in Otu, near Iseyin. The Commissioner for Lands, Housing, and Survey, Mr. Isaac Ajiboye Omodewu, presented the cheques to the beneficiaries at a brief ceremony in Otu, Itesiwaju Local Government Area of the state last week.

The commissioner, an indigene of Otu, lauded the governor for abiding by the law and demonstrating that the state believes in the peace and security of its citizens. He said: “It is the vision of the governor, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, to bring investors into the state. The community has agreed to release the land to the government and their compensations are being paid accordingly today.”

Mr. Wale Majolagbe, Director of Finance, Lexcel Group, and representative of Allied Atlantic Distilleries, one of the investors, said: “Since Oke-Ogun supplies most of the cassava we use, we decided to move to the 4,000 hectares of land available here for expansion. Activities will start on the land by the first week in April and the ethanol production plant will be ready in the next two years.”

Responding, the chairman, Itesiwaju Local Government, AbdulFatai Niyi Adeagbo, commended the governor for promptly paying compensation to owners of the acquired lands. He also counseled the beneficiaries to make judicious use of the fund. He assured the state government and the investor that the people in the community will work in close harmony with all stakeholders to guarantee the growth and development of the community.

Beyond the compensation and immediate employment of over 4,000 cassava farmers, when the ethanol plant is completed, it will reduce unemployment in the state be the catalyst for the growth and development of Otu and the Oke-Ogun area of the state.