By Abubakar S. H
By the time the results of November, 11, Saturday’s governorship election is eventually announced and Ahmed Usman Ododo is declared the winner, his victory will leave no one in doubt because it will be a well-deserved victory.
The All Progressives Congress Governorship candidate, offers by far the most well-thought-out.
The solutions put forward in his policy document give our people a new lease of life. Among his competitors, he unarguably ran the most holistic, all-inclusive and gruelling campaign schedules.
Sometimes during the campaigns, in the ancient town of Lokoja, the kogi state capital, which has now become accustomed and famous for Ododo’s sagely and piercing remarks, he spoke, perhaps in consonance with the history of the state as the cradle of the free press. It was at that kogi state capital that Ododo added “Beautiful flower” to kogian’s ever-expanding political vocabulary while addressing party supporters in his residence in Lokoja. It was an assertion of his will and readiness to be governor of Kogi state.
Contrary to the negative spin by his traducers, that insightful statement was never made out of any vainglorious sense of entitlement. It was a bold and audacious statement, asserting his suitability for the exalted office. It was meant to convey the fact that having worked to advance democracy in the land, having contributed immensely to kogi’s growth and development, and having also contributed in achieving political goals, he is also deserving of the topmost office by virtue of his qualifications, competence and capacity.
Anyone claiming self-entitlement would sit at home, fold his arms and expect the governorship to be delivered to him on a silver platter. Not Ododo. He traversed the length and breadth of the state, speaking directly to the people and selling his candidacy and message of Kogi project.
When the curtain is drawn on the party’s open campaign after a hugely successful and unprecedented consultations round the state, the APC candidate would have gone around the entire state, visiting many lgas several times over.
I have taken the time to present Ododo comprehensive journey around the state before this important election to underscore how hard he had worked and how rigorous his campaign activities had been.
Now, the first point that is remarkable about this is Ododo engaged in ceaseless, consistent and sustained trips around the state, in some cases to difficult and uncharted terrains, soliciting support for his candidature.
These demanding schedules belied baseless insinuations that he was imposed by Gov. Yahaya Bello is false, Ododo contested election and he won.
Ododo’s message of Kogi project was disseminated during the wide consultation and well laid out in his action plan encapsulates his vision for the state in various areas including insecurity which he plans to confront with the injection of cutting-edge technology and by putting more boots on the ground with the recruitment of more personnel alongside necessary training programmes.
On the economy, Ododo seeks to catalyse double-digit growth through massive resource mobilisation and increasing the megawatts of available electricity to pave the way for rapid industrialisation in kogi state.
Ododo’s turnaround plan includes continuous and increasing investment in physical infrastructure such as road networks. The ododo plan gives agriculture and particularly crop farming and rice production priority attention. These areas, which form parts of the achievements of Governor Yahaya Bello, would be revved up and consolidated by Ododo – Joel governorship ticket.
There are many more to talk about in these project; cutting across education, particularly university education, industrial relations, fighting corruption, etc, but for space constraints.
What this vividly demonstrates is that Gov. Yahaya Bello and Ahmed Usman Ododo are on the same page on the matter of the 2023 governorship.
Indeed, the governor is working to ensure the victory of Ododo in the coming election. At every turn, the consultation campaign, he has been strongly selling and marketing Ododo to kogians, raising his hands up as the next Governor, God willing.
Gov. Yahaya Bello made it clear that though he is not a candidate in this election, APC has a qualified and competent flag bearer in Ahmed Ododo who would continue with and consolidate his achievements.
The party and the council chairmen are standing solidly behind their candidate. The national chairman of the party, former governor Ganduje, majority of the governors and members of the national working committee and other party chieftains were with him. The import of this is since throwing their weight behind Ahmed Usman Ododo,the APC leadership have remained steadfast.