By Emmanuel Adeleke
The former Direct General of the Oyo State Liaison Office in Abuja, Engr. Wale Ajani, has commended the Oyo State Governor, Engr. Seyi Makinde, for his transformational leadership, describing him as a specie that the upcoming politicians need to understudy.
Ajani gave the commendation while speaking with South West Guild of Online Publishers (SWEGOP) in Ibadan, the Oyo state capital.
He said Makinde has moved the state forward, stressing that anyone taking over the mantle from him must be highly innovative and development oriented.
“Let me say this unequivocally that the number one primary thing is that, I wouldn’t have joined any government if it is not performing. Governor Makinde was and still doing very well and some of us were encouraged to work with him.
“It is the basis for me to join and contribute my own little quota because if you look at my antecedent, I contested in 2019 as a candidate under Action Democratic Congress (ADC). If you know what happened, we that contested for House of Assembly were the canon fodders,” he said.
The engineer turned lawyer, who described the few months spent in office as a very good re-learning period, said he was able to restructure working administration of the staff members of Oyo House that were posted from Ibadan to Abuja.
“First thing I did after resumption is to change the image of the Oyo House which is the Embassy of Oyo State in Abuja. I discovered that a lot of things were not on the right track. You have to put everything in order because image is everything. Perception is key, how do you have Oyo House that when you look at the street, you would see Kastina, Rivers, Ogun, Ekiti, Lagos etc. It is only Oyo House that urgently need a facelift internally and externally.
“Secondly, I was able to restructure working administration of the staff of Oyo House that were posted from Ibadan to Abuja. We had a meeting, everyone got a clear schedule of duty so no one was inactive. I checked the office files and discovered nobody has been engaging Ministries Departments and Agencies (MDAs) on behalf of the state government and with the permission of His Excellency, Gov Seyi Makinde, I was able to lead the state team to more that 40 MDAs for proper engagement on what Omituntun 1.0 was about and also the achievement of Gov Seyi Makinde. We also tried to make sure that we opened conversation, short and long term interest of the Seyi Makinde administration.
“The third aspect was that one of the mission of Abuja and Lagos liaison offices is to issue the Certificate of Indigene to Oyo State in the diaspora. Before the dissolution of the government, I have started the plans to make it seamless, leveraging on latest technology, thereby making it possible to acquire it without traveling through a long distance.
“The truth is that there are over 300 federal agencies in Abuja. Every of these agencies have one thing or the other that they are doing and we have 36 states in Nigeria. So, the liaison officers’ responsibility is to make sure that you go and ask how do my state benefit, they won’t come and tell you. Nobody will come to you and say because you are liaison officer or DG. You are just DG in your pocket.
“So you have to go and look for opportunities for your people and engage them because it is not the same grammar that I speak when I get to Energy Commission of Nigeria that I am going to speak when I get to Rural Electrification Agency. Most times before you go to these people, you need to research and know exactly what you are going there to tell them, otherwise they would just rubbish you or think you are there for meet and greet,” he added.
Expressing concerns about the rate at which Nigerian youths are derailing, Ajani said values are from homes, urging parents not to leave their responsibilities to teachers.
“I will start with the issue of value in our youth. We always believe that when you always go to church or mosque you actually know God, but going to church and mosque is just a religion. Values are from homes. Unfortunately, with the kind of value system we are running now, fathers and mothers don’t have time for the children anymore.
“You will even see young ladies whose mothers would say, ‘look at your mates who are making money, you can’t bring anything on the table.’ They are thinking that because you are a fine girl, you should go and do anything. It is a serious issue.
“The value is missing at home. It is the responsibility of parents. You should not wait for teachers to help you train your children. I told my son that if I knew what I know now, I would not buy that car then. It wouldn’t have been my priority. I told him this when he was 10years old. Some of us would not tell our boys these things. I would call my boys and say come, let’s talk about masturbation, cultism etc. They need to know them before one friend will lie to them and introduce them to wrong group,” Ajani explained.