Ekiti State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi has called on Nigerians to reflect on developmental challenges of the country and pray for its greatness as the nation marks its centenary anniversary this new year, 2014. Governor Fayemi, who stated this in his new year message to the people of the state, however assured them that his administration would continue to lead in a responsible manner, placing much premium on development and ensuring stability and growth.
“Nigeria’s centennial coincides with a new phase of our struggle for the soul of our great nation. 2013 was a very historic year in the political space as we all witnessed; 2014 promises to be even more eventful. I therefore urge us all as a people whose destiny is connected inextricably with our great country Nigeria, to keeping praying even as we support the agitation for the restoration of True Federalism and the entrenchment of equity and justice in our polity.
“I must however remind us all that a nation, in spite of the complex institutions and structures boils down to the family unit comprising individuals. Indeed, the fate of Nigeria is in your hands and is dependent on the choices and decisions each and every one of us makes every day. We cannot collectively be complaining of corruption bedeviling the nation when in our individual lives, we cut corners and devise ways to undermine laws of the land and the institutions that enforce these laws.
“Therefore, as Nigeria clocks 100 years, I commend us all to rededicate our lives to practising the ethos of honour and integrity that we Ekiti are known for, in our individual lives, in our families and in our various communities. By the grace of God and the righteousness of our people, Nigeria will overcome its current travails and once again be exalted in the comity of nations”.
On the 2014 governorship poll in the state, Governor Fayemi said: “As you know, this year 2014 is a year of crucial decision in our state. Our still young republic grapples with the legacy of militarism, its violent imprint on our politics, and a generational perception of political competition as a form of warfare. It is unfortunate that politics is not widely seen as a contest of ideas for hearts and minds but a desperate means to get to power by all means possible.
“I take this opportunity to remind all and sundry, particularly those who would be interested in contesting the upcoming election, that the quality of power is defined by the nature of its pursuit. When we mortgage our consciences and values in the pursuit of power, no matter how dignified or admirable our intentions, it costs us bits of our humanity and deprives governance of the moral authority that is its true foundation.
“We should refrain from inciting our people to violence and other negative tendencies. Ultimately, an anarchic approach in which the contestants for power deploy all means, fair or foul, to win, de-legitimises and de-humanises politics. We cannot afford to lose the grounds we have gained in establishing peace and tranquility in Ekiti over the last few years.
“I urge all our people to join us in appealing to every aspirant not to make their liberty a bondage for Ekiti people. We should all focus on issue-based campaign while we sell our candidacy to our people.
I urge all our people to demand of every contestant what he/she can do differently from what my administration has done for you. It is a fact that we have touched all communities in our development drive and these facts – these tangibles – are what we will be campaigning with, not lies, not violence. Ekiti people have a duty to sieve through all promises, all statements, all lies to arrive at the truth and make the best decision that would further galvanise our dear Ekiti State on the already begun journey to lasting development and progress.
“Our government shall continue to provide the required leadership and strive to meet its obligations to all in the face of depleting resources. We also seek the cooperation of all and sundry to join the task of sustaining our modest achievements so far. We are holding the candle for our people to find the pathway to prosperity.
“I am a firm believer in the sanctity of life and on no occasion will I tolerate the attempt by desperate politicians and agents of reactionary tendencies to import violence into the state and subsequently turn around to blame such on the government.
“I therefore call on all stakeholders, the people, the political elite, traditional institutions, security agencies, e.t.c., to put in all efforts to ensure Ekiti records a free and fair election that would be a model to other states and a reflection of the honourable people that we are.”