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Wada’s Impact Amidst the Misconception by Abu Micheal

Wada Flags Off Ankpa Road
With the Kogi State Governorship Election around the corner, there seem to be these frantic efforts, to discredit and portray Captain Idris Wada, the incumbent by certain persons, especially those having an eye on the governorship, as clueless and likely to be an unpopular choice to run as governor again in some section of the media.
 This action is seen by analysts as most worrisome amidst the several efforts the governor has made to build human and critical infrastructures in the state in the last three years.  Few persons have been fingered within the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), and working in alliance with the opposition party, have found it convenient to spread unfounded, baseless and hate campaign, tailored towards casting aspersion on the person of the Governor, alleging under performance, and that he is not a popular candidate to run in the forth coming governorship race.
 Since the creation of Kogi State, the credentials of Captain Idris Wada, the present Governor, a world class aviator, a refined gentleman, the first graduate Governor, and a holder of a complimentary Master’s degree to have govern the State has no doubt made the difference in governance.
 As governor, his introduction of a scientific approach, tailored towards creating the right environment for unlocking the natural and human potentials of the state has no doubt been laid by Capt Wada administration.
 The Governor’s finesse, prudent use of resources, a departure from the norm where money is shared to thugs, with the governor preferring to invest in positive youth development, are reasons behind the dislike, and the smear campaign to run him down. 
Amidst several challenge Captain Wada met on assumption of office, three and half year down the line, and taking stock, it is safe to say that by the available records, the verdict has been that of good performance, devoid of noise making by the Wada administration.
The governor’s desire for quality work in the execution of projects across the state has ensured the putting in place of a vigorous procurement process devoid of the usual undercurrent for contract award to unqualified contractors and for political patronage.  This is another reason he is at logger heads with some persons.  Realizing the nature of revenue accruing to the State on assumption as governor, Captain Idris Wada made the payment of salaries a priority.  It is important to state that the State is one among states in the federation that is not indebted to its workforce.  As at time of this report, the salaries for July 2015, has been paid.
 Averagely and since 2012 when he assumed office, the state receives between N3.5billion to N3.7billion as allocation. The wage bill of the state is put at N3.2billion, a figure that barely leaves the government with a little above N200million to run the state after salaries have been paid.

Presently, the Staff strength of Teachers in the state is put at 33,000 with an expected wage bill put at N1.3 billion. More than that amount is however required to pay the N18000 minimum wage.

Unfortunately, what the Teachers got to pay salaries for the month of March and April, 2015 was N1billion. If not for certain technical challenge to teachers in some Local government Areas, salaries of all teachers in the State would have been paid till date. Similarly, The total staff  strength of the entire Kogi State Council workers stands at 26,542 as at March end. The expected Monthly wage bill needed to offset the workers salaries at that level of government is put at about N1.6billion.

Unfortunately the councils do not get up to that. But in all, all councils based on what is available are up to date in salary payment, despite the complain of percentage payment.

The administration has since assumption of office ensured that funds are committed to the completion of inherited projects.  At the last counts, the administration has not only completed payment for the greater lokoja water project, the confluence stadium, the phase two of the state secretariat, confluence beach hotels, several roads projects it inherited have been completed.  For record, the Capt Wada administration has so far completed 58 road projects across the state. Others are still on going.
 In 2012, the state was ravaged by an evil flood, a challenge that led to the loss of lives and properties.
After successfully managing the disaster, the administration aside building a flood housing estate, the first of the its kind the country, converted the flood plain in the affected areas of the state to planting rice in an accelerated production program.

The governor also realizing that the monthly allocation to the state was dwindling, put in place measures that has seen to the astronomical increase in the states internally generated revenue from a paltry N150 million it met on assumption of office to an average of between N500 million and N600 million monthly.
Also realizing the enormity of the work to be done, especially in building the essential infrastructure, Captain Idris Wada approached the capital market.  Having diligently scaled the hurdle, despite frantic efforts to frustrate his good intention by the opposition, he was able to secure N8billion out of the N20billion bond he applied for.
 Towards ensuring prudence in the utilization of the Bond, Captain Wada decided to access the fund in four trenches of N5 billion.
 Today, all the iconic project listed to secure the bond are all on-going simultaneously and are at their various stages of completion.  Some of the on-going projects being financed by the bond fund include the upgrading of the welcome to Lokoja road through the international market.  The road design is fitted with well laid drainages, sidewalks and street light. When completed it would no doubt add to the aesthetic beauty of the state capital.

Also being funded by the bond fund is the 16 km Otokiti Ganaja bye pass road.  This road too when completed will open a new part of Lokoja for development.  Worthy of mention amongst the bond projects is the 500 housing units at Ganaja and Crusher areas of Lokoja, the Lokoja bus terminal, a first of its kind since the creation of the state.  when completed will serve as a hub for the Kogi transport project which has already kicked off with pilot project of the first publicly subsidized transport system in the nation, tagged the Lokoja city bus service.
 Still on some of the iconic projects on-going in the state is the seventeen storey Kogi House project in Abuja as well as the establishment of thirty five other water schemes across the state. The state under Capt Wada in the last three years has been safe and sound, it has remained a destination of choice for investors, culminating into the signing of about eighteen MoU’s by the state government with reputable organizations at home and internationally.
 Despite the challenge posed by funds to the administration, the present administration is building a University Teaching Hospital in Ayingba, the Diagnostic and Imaging Centre in Lokoja alongside the building of four zonal hospitals as well as the renovation of all general hospitals across the state are some remarkable achievements of the present administration.
 Mention must also be made of the remodeling of the Kogi Hotels, and all the state government lodges as some monumental achievements the opposition close their eyes to, all in attempt to score cheap political point.

The campaign of calumny and misrepresentation of fact of non performance by self styled opposition elements which has continued unabated is certainly aimed at discrediting the result oriented administration.  But these has not distracted the honesty, integrity and trust the administration of Captain Wada a virtuous leader is known for.

But consoling to the damage these politicians think they do to the person of Capt Wada, is that in this age, elections are determined by the people. One therefore wonders at the desperation to pull down a man whose sole essence in government , these last three years has been service and service alone.

Without contestation, Kogi state since 1999 has remained a PDP state.  the positive impact made by the Captain Wada’s administration when assessed amidst available resources, clearly shows the quality leadership and sacrifice that has been made in placing the state on a sound footing.

Capt Wada’s style of governance is one that has demystified and simplified leadership from the exotic heights, a reason some persons find convenient to spread falsehood, misinform the public, deliberately paint the governor black, with the intention that it may translate into their political fortune.

But having governed with an unblemished record in the last three years, Captain Wada has left no stone unturned in achieving the dream of taking Kogi State into the comity of twenty most developed states in Nigeria by the year 2020. For those who are used to business as usual, the man Capt Wada may not be popular and is deemed not to have performed as long as their pockets are not laced with naira and kobo. But if the truth must be told, Capt Wada remains the toast of the common man, whose interest his policies and programmes has protected in the last three years.
Abu Micheal

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