Ekiti State Government is to commence the construction and rehabilitation of 1,000 kilometres rural roads and renovation of all public primary schools in the state in the 2020 fiscal year. This is in addition to the rehabilitation of all the 177 primary health centres across the state.
The State Governor, Dr Kayode Fayemi, disclosed this on Thursday at the consultative meeting held in three senatorial districts to get stakeholders’ input to the 2020 budget preparation. The meeting took place in Ikere, Ikole and Ado-Ekiti with representatives of various towns and villages across the 16 local government areas in attendance.
While responding to the various suggestions made by the people regarding their priority projects in the 2020 budget Dr Fayemi said the proposed budget would focus more on the rural areas thereby bringing deserved development to the areas through tarring and rehabilitation of roads as well as improvement to the health, education, power sectors and erosion control.
He explained that the meeting was designed to commence the process of inclusive budget preparation for 2020 which was in line with the participatory budgeting model that was established during his first term in office as governor between 2010 and 2014.
The Governor assured the people of the state that his government would undertake rehabilitation and tarring of 1000km of rural roads through the Rural Access to Market Programme (RAMP), in partnership with the World Bank, adding that he had already got the nod of the World Bank to undergo a number of projects in the state.
Fayemi said he had already paid the counterpart fund for 2016 to 2018 to UBEC, said the state already has about N8Billion in its coffers to embark on the second phase of school buildings renovation and construction for a conducive teaching and learning environment.
According to the governor, “I can see that the issue of the road came upon the requests of all the communities, these roads are divided into two, the rural roads and township roads. First, I want to assure our people especially, the royal fathers that we would work on all the rural roads. We have money to work on one thousand kilometres of rural roads, I have the list here and I’m sure some of the names will be ones that you are very familiar with.
“As soon as I came back this time, I have been working with the World Bank team and they have visited many of your communities and there is hardly any community that we are not going to embark on a major construction of feeder roads from the farm to the market. And of course, the township roads will not be neglected. We are going to continue with the rehabilitation 5km road in each of the local governments, annually.”
“We would start the second phase of Operation Renovate All Schools very soon and no doubt, we have the resources to do it. All the counterpart funding that was not paid by Ekiti State government in 2016, 2017, 2018, I have cleared all of them and we have at least 8 Billion Naira to work on schools in the state. And we are building four new schools in Ado Ekiti in 2020.”
Governor Fayemi also restated his commitment towards ensuring that measures were taking to either prevent or reduce the menace of erosion and flood in the state, said the issue of flood and erosion has affected virtually every community of the state which has caused a lot of unbearable hardship to the people.
“The second issue that came up from all the local governments is gully erosion problem, we’ve seen it in Ado, in Oke Ureje, Omisanjana, but not only in Ado but in our several communities. If you see the topography of Ekiti, it should not surprise us that we have erosion problems in the state because we are in-between hills and valleys and because of that, we can’t cheat nature, we can only prevent and reduce the effect of erosion in our state.
“Again, we are working hard and we have quite some sizeable amount of money to work on erosion too in the state. So, many of these areas affected by erosion, we would incorporate in the budget 2020 and subsequent budget just as you have highlighted. He stated.
On the issue of poor electricity supply to the state, the governor said he had made a report to both the President and the Vice President and they have promised to seize the license of the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC). He explained that the regular supply of electricity is pivotal to the economic and industrial development of any society.