OGF’s Second Letter to Governor Seyi Makinde on Akesan, Security, Others

Oyo Global Forum has written the Governor of Oyo State, His Excellency Mr Seyi Makinde over his promise to rebuild the razed Akesan Market, siting of COVID-19 isolation centre, completion of radio service facilities and security situation in Oyo Federal Constituency. Mr Governor had received an advance copy of the letter on Monday night, April 20, 2020, before the copy was formally submitted at his office on Tuesday. Please read the letter below.

His Excellency,
Engr. Seyi Makinde,
The Executive Governor,
Oyo State,
Oyo State Secretariat,
Ibadan,
Oyo State.

Your Excellency Sir,

ESTABLISHMENT OF COVID-19 ISOLATION CENTRE, ATIBA FM STATION/RENOVATION OF ILORA SUB-STATION AND RECONSTRUCTION OF AKESAN MARKET WITH A CENTRALISED OPERATION BURST SECURITY OUTFIT IN OYO

We present to Your Excellency the warmest compliments of the good people of Atiba, Afijio, Oyo East and Oyo West Local Government Areas that form Oyo Federal Constituency, on behalf of whom Oyo Global Forum, OGF, acts, as a non-partisan civic group of professionals home and abroad, to engage with the authorities towards achieving sustainable growth and development in an atmosphere of peace.

The pleasure of Your Excellency is humbly requested to note that OGF has for several years not only worked to seek from government optimal service delivery for our people, but has even directly covered service gaps, including provisioning of deep wells, legal aid, and food aid for the long-disadvantaged populations. OGF annually organises ‘Enterprise Bootcamp’ collaborating with De Montfort University, UK and the University of Ibadan to help start-ups and burgeoning entrepreneurs enhance their capacities and access to resources required for scaling up.

We have been at the forefront of mobilising the energies of our people to confront Oyo’s troubling incidence of violence, gangsterism and drug abuse.

It is in furtherance of our civic role of interceding between our people and authourities that we have written this letter to Your Excellency with a humble request you consider for urgent actions certain issues that are of critical importance to our people this time and for the future.

1. RECONSTRUCTION OF AKESAN MARKET: On January 5 this year, a raging fire completely razed Akesan Market, Oyo, and destroyed the livelihoods of thousands of our people. In the wake of that disaster, we wrote Your Excellency seeking the rebuild of the Market and support for the victims towards their livelihood recovery. We indeed, in our earlier letter, noted that the poor state of the Fire Service in Oyo caused the scale of destruction our people experienced. You then visited Oyo and made promises to rebuild the Market and even supported the victims. While we have seen the building plan, there has been no on-the-ground work for the reconstruction of the Market. People now only make do with makeshift stalls, which are becoming useless as the wet season starts. Trading, as well as, living, has thus become a torrid exercise for people, thereby worsening the town’s socio-economic and insecurity problems. We, therefore, pray Your Excellency to commit with actionable steps towards the commencement of the reconstruction.

2. ESTABLISHMENT OF COVID-19 ISOLATION CENTRE IN OYO: Sir, we commend the Government of Oyo State under the leadership of Your Excellency for the unprecedented efforts and your commitment at tackling the Covid-19 pandemic in Oyo State. We also express our delight at your recovery from the disease. We pray for others with active cases in Oyo State, Nigeria, and across the world to receive healing, as we hope ongoing efforts to get vaccines against the virus yields positive results soon. We note that the Government has provided isolation centres across zones in Oyo State in preparation for a possible spread. Again, this level of preparedness is commendable. However, Sir, we note with concern the exclusion of Oyo Zone. Despite the well recorded historical and contemporary importance of Oyo, it has mostly been excluded in the distribution of critical resources, opportunities and infrastructural facilities among the zones in Oyo State. We do not want this to continue and this is the sub-structural basis of our concern regarding the COVID-19 isolation centres. Arising from the foregoing, therefore, we humbly request that an Isolation centre be established in Oyo.

3. COMPLETION OF THE ABANDONED ATIBA FM RADIO STATION AND REHABILITATION OF ILORA SUB-STATION: To highlight the foregoing concern about exclusion more broadly, Your Excellency, Sir, you are humbly invited to note that for nearly a decade the Teaching Hospital annexe in Oyo remains incomplete; the Atiba FM radio service station and Ilora sub-station remain incomplete; the Oyo Township Road project was a shoddy job compared to what was done in Ogbomoso and Iseyin, apart from going through a process that stank of fraud, was shrouded in ultra secrecy. It was commissioned without completion and we felt a deep sense of abuse in Oyo. Children across the state now have access to lessons by radio service as they stay home due to Covid-19 pandemic. Our own children in Oyo are not able to enjoy this service. They are disadvantaged. We thank you for the new road projects in Oyo but it is our expectation that we have a quality delivery this time.

4. NEED FOR A CENTRALISED LOCATION FOR OPERATION BURST SECURITY OUTFIT IN OYO: Another matter of serious concern we would use this opportunity to bring to the attention of Your Excellency is insecurity. Gangs’ bases with young people bizarrely smoking Indian hemp dot various places in Oyo. Frequently, they engage in violent clashes, effectively preventing trading and making life difficult for the people. We have for years campaigned against this violence, working with local leaders and the security. While it appeared we had achieved some substantial progress against the menace at a point in time, it is now becoming our reality again, sadly. We have continued to explore local measures but we request the intervention of Your Excellency to, among other measures, consider moving ‘Operation Burst’ to a more central location within the Town and declare a decisive action to end criminal activities of gangs in Oyo so that our people can live and work in peace.

We have just completed a research aimed at helping the government gain evidence-based materials for public health policy. We are willing to discuss this with you in some more details.

PRAYER:

Your Excellency is hereby respectfully invited to CONSIDER and APPROVE the ESTABLISHMENT OF COVID-19 ISOLATION CENTRE IN OYO, COMPLETION OF ABANDONED ATIBA FM STATION/RENOVATION OF ILORA SUB-STATION AND RECONSTRUCTION OF AKESAN MARKET WITH A CENTRALISED OPERATION BURST SECURITY OUTFIT IN OYO.

As we look forward to hearing from Your Excellency with actions following our requests, Please accept, Your Excellency, the assurances of our highest regards and readiness to work with you to the extent of achieving sustainable peace and development for our people in a non-partisan manner.

Thank you Sir

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