Completion of the abandoned Ilesha Baruba campus of the Kwara State University remains a top priority of the administration as is the Kishi-Kaiama road in the northern senatorial district, Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq has said.
The Governor had earlier mentioned that the Ilesha Baruba campus is to be prioritised alongside the one in Osi in Kwara South — amongst other projects to be funded under the state’s fiscal plan.
Speaking in Ilorin on Friday during a sallah visit to Government House by monarchs from Kwara North, AbdulRazaq said the administration has also lobbied to have the special Livestock zone sited in the district to hasten socioeconomic development and improved the welfare of the people.
He said his administration would continue to accord respect to traditional institutions and not interfere in their affairs, stressing how significant their roles are, especially in maintaining peace in their various communities.
“I thank you for what you have been doing with security agencies to maintain calm in your domains and to make sure that security issues are properly attended to. We appreciate what you are doing in keeping together the fabric of the society. We will support you in what you do and we will not allow any disrespect to your institutions and personalities. Wherever you had any issue and need assistance from government, reach out to us and we will give you the support,” the Governor told the monarchs led by the Estu Patigi, Alhaji Ibrahim Umar Bologi ll who came to pay him sallah homage.
“As you have seen from the past two years, we have not interfered in what you do in your domains and how you do your things. We will let you have control over traditional matters and we will not unduly interfere in your affairs.”
He said his administration understands the challenges of infrastructural deficits in basic education, health, roads, and water confronting every part of the state, especially the people of Kwara North, and promised to continue to pay attention to them.
He itemised his priority areas to include road infrastructure, rehabilitation and construction of basic schools, upgrade of health facilities with equipment, and social investment.
AbdulRazaq attributed the delay in the completion of the Kishi-Kaiama road construction project partly to lack of fund, saying he will continue to push for release of funds from the Federal government to enable the contractor get back to site.
“On education, like we promised, we intend to make sure that Ilesha Baruba Campus of KWASU is ready very soon. We are very serious about that project. We are seriously investing in the education sector and other areas,” he said.
“On Patigi/Pada Road, we are also pushing the Federal Government to release fund to that site because the road will open the area for agriculture and investors. About N5 billion is going to be invested in Kwara North through the Special Livestock Zone. Also, Kishi/Kaiama Road is one of our administration’s major concerns, though it is a federal road. The contract of the road has now been reawarded after it was terminated from the former contractor. So, the contract was awarded about 10 years ago, so there are a lot of variations in the project and the contractor is now processing variation cost. We will keep pushing the federal government on the project.”
AbdulRazaq urged the people of the state to be patient with his administration, given longstanding infrastructural deficits, and to take issues of security very seriously because no investor will invest where there is no security.
The Estu Patigi and Vice Chairman of Kwara State Council of Chiefs, for his part, thanked the Governor for his priority attention to issues affecting Kwara North, and pledged their continued support and prayer for the present administration to succeed.
Senator Umar Sidiq (Kwara North) said “we are proud of this government because of its genuine concern for our people”.
The event was attended by the Secretary to the State Government Prof Mamman Saba Jibril; Head of Service, Susan Modupe Oluwole; Commissioner for Local Government chieftaincy Affairs and Community Development Arch. Saifudeen Aliyu Mohammed; his Works and Transport counterpart Engr Rotimi Iliasu; Special Adviser (Political) Abdulateef Gidado Alakawa; and Edu TIC Chairman; among other government functionaries.