Edo governor: We’ll fulfil all our promises

Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo state has charged governments at all levels to prioritise agriculture and adequately harness the untapped potentials of the sector to fast-track economic growth and development.

Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has reassured the people of the state that his government would fulfil all promises made during his second term electioneering campaign.

Obaseki said the state had commenced the process for the drafting of a 30-year development plan to provide the government with necessary tools, guidelines and milestones for development planning.

The governor spoke in Benin City during an interview with journalists, at a workshop for the development of Benin Master Plan and Edo State Development Plan. He said the plans would ensure a defined template for development and growth in the state.

The governor stated, “We are here to start a series of workshops that will lead to the creation of the Benin City Master Plan, Edo State Regional Plan, and Edo State 30-year Economic Development Plan.

“I made it clear during our electioneering that one of the legacies of our administration will be to leave behind the compass, like a directional tool, which will indicate where Edo should be headed over the next three decades.

“So, this is in fulfilment of our electoral promise and it was a well thought-out out idea. We found out that one of the biggest challenges we have as a country and as a state is that we don’t plan; we have lost the culture of planning and we just keep moving on.

“As an administration, one of the biggest concerns that people keep expressing is that, Mr. Governor, you and your Deputy, Philip Shaibu, are doing well; you are charting a new direction for the state. What is the guarantee that when you leave office that these things will continue?

“Who is the person that will come and take over and ensure that these continue? My response is that we may not find that person, but we can create that system that will ensure that what we have started continues.”

Obaseki further said, “Today, I think we are taking a very small step in the right direction. From the experiences of people, who have done it right, if we do it properly, no matter the challenges ahead of us, we will have the clarity to go through it. From my experience in government, I have been involved in Edo government for more than 14 years, one of the biggest challenges that we face is waste.

“Most of our resources are wasted, because we do not have a plan. If you just look at the Ministries, Department and Agency of Government (MDAs) about six to seven of them are executing the same job, because they are not talking to each other. Our children are going to inherit that plan.”

Chief Executive Officer of SIRA, Dr. Kamal Azar, the company that is to develop the proposed plan, called on stakeholders in the state to join hands with the government to ensure the realisation of the plan.

Azar said, “The master plan is very important in meeting the current challenges that we are going to be faced with. The regional plan is going to help us in improving the wellbeing of the people in areas where there are concerns about present and the future living conditions.

“This plan is important, because Benin City is growing and expanding without a plan. I call on all stakeholders in the state to join hands in this dream of executing this plan.”

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