By Lucky Isibor
Edo state Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki has admonished the newly elected council chairmen that they have no excuse to fail to serve their people warning that they have no godfathers to settle.
Governor Obaseki gave the admonition Monday, while swearing-in the newly elected Chairmen for the eighteen Local Government Areas of the state.
He charged the new heads of the councils to be accountable, responsive and responsible in administering the affairs of their respective councils.
He said, “My administration has kept aside N2 billion saved from the Paris Club refunds in the councils’ treasury for the new executives to commence activities.
According to him, “You are not coming to meet an empty treasury. I have saved your Paris refund in excess of N2billion and some of you have savings in excess of N2billion.
“So, you will be coming into office with some reserves and savings, but you have to focus on enduring projects.”
He said the era, in which council bosses left offices with debts for their successors would not be accepted, noting that his administration has spent the last 17 months offsetting debts incurred by former local government executives.
The governor described the peaceful conduct of the electoral process as historic, noting, “The increasing acceptability of the laudable programmes of the All Progressives Congress (APC) enabled you to secure victory at the polls. We do not expect less from you.
“Your elections were free and fair, so you must go and serve the people who voted you into office. You have no Godfather to settle. Your sole responsibility must be the welfare of the people in your council,” the governor charged the newly elected executives.
The Minister of Labour and Employment, Dr. Chris Ngige, who witnessed the swearing-in ceremony, commended Governor Obaseki for saving up funds for the chairmen to kick-start their activities. He described the act as benevolent and urged the council bosses to utilize the fund for the benefit of the masses.
In a chat with news men after the swearing-in, chairman of Uhunmwode Local Government Area, Hon. Napoleon Agbaman said he would take the issue of environmental sanitation seriously by evacuating refuse in urban areas and educate rural dwellers in the council area to provide good toilet facilities in their homes.
He assured that he would ensure he fulfils his electioneering campaign promises to his people.
Reacting to the governor’s charge to the chairmen, Special Assistant to Governor Obaseki from Isi ward in Uhunmwode Local Government Area, Kate Odeh, assured that Hon. Agbaman will readily key into the governor’s expectations as Uhunmwode people repose a lot of confidence in him.
She assured that as Special Assistant to the governor, she will collaborate with the Local Government chairman to fast track development in the area.
Also speaking, chairman of Igueben Local Government Area, Engr. Jossy Ogedegbe said he would hit the ground running immediately he resumes office at Igueben Monday.
Local Government elections were held in Edo state last Saturday, 3 March in all the eighteen Local Government Areas of the state.
All the chairmanship and councillorship seats were won by the ruling All Progressives Congress, APC.
The main opposition People’s Democratic Party, PDP boycotted the election, siting alleged bias by the Edo State Independent Electoral Commission, EDSIEC.