The Ondo State Governor, Mr. Oluwarotimi Akeredolu (SAN), has promised to make the state an envy of all within and beyond Nigeria in the agriculture sector if reelected for another term.
Speaking on Friday at an interactive session with farmers at the Government Reserve Forest across the 18 local government areas of the state, Akeredolu informed the gathering that his administration has paid N500 million counterpart fund to the World Bank funded Rural Access and Agricultural Marketing Programme (RAAMP) to access funds needed to rehabilitate the roads to all the major farms in the state.
The interactive session, held at Adegbemile Cultural Centre, Akure, the state capital, ended with an endorsement of Akeredolu for another term by members of the Farmers Association who promised to mobilize their members across the state to ensure that the governor returns to office.
“Dear farmers, let me congratulate you for what you are going to benefit from my second term if you renew your social contract with me.
“Some months ago, I paid the sum of N500 million to RAAMP to able to access funds needed to be used to rehabilitate all the roads that lead to major farms across the 18 local government areas of our state but the project was delayed by the National Assembly who didn’t approve the funds on time.
“However, today, I am pleased to inform you that RAAMP has been approved by the National Assembly. My second term will make the roads to your farms accessible through all forms of transportation technology.”
According to him, “Continuity is the key. You need me to return to make this happen and I need you to return to make history because I want to work for tomorrow. I want to work for posterity. I want to create jobs through agriculture. I want Ondo to stop relying on allocation from Abuja. I want an Ondo that investors will troop into like market.
“By the grace of God, you will all smile in my second term than you have smiled in my first term thus far. You have said I am the best thus far, be rest assured that I won’t betray your trust if you renew your social contract with me.”
Endorsing the governor for a second term, the farmers, led by the Olu of Omifunfun, Idanre, Oba Ilemobayo Akinwolemi, said Akeredolu deserves another shot in power because of his unusual performance thus far.
Recounting their experiences during the previous administrations, the farmers narrated how their farms and houses were destroyed but the previous administrations did virtually nothing to rehabilitate them.
Flanked by executive members of the union, Oba Akinwolemi said no governor has done what the Akeredolu-led administration has done for farmers since the state was created in 1976.
“Four years ago, the governor met us during the campaign and promised us that he would allow us to farm in the government reserves if we voted for him and today, he has fulfilled his campaign promise.
“We have already begun our campaign for his re-election three years ago. We are ready to return Akeredolu for a second term in office for allowing us to farm without any harassment,” he said.