© 2018 - International Centre for Investigative Reporting
Newly Sworn In Governors Take Charge In Many States
Just as the newly sworn in Nigerian president, Muhammadu Buhari, was taking his oath of office, many other states on Friday also witnessed a change of executive guard in colorful ceremonies that held across the country.
In Borno State, re elected governor Kashim Shettima promised to work tirelessly on job creation, insisting that the present high level of unemployment in the country had turned many energetic youths into “political trekkers.”
The governor made the promise in his inaugural speech presented shortly after he took the oath of office and allegiance alongside his deputy, Zannah Mustapha, at the Ramat Square, Maiduguri.
After the oath was administered on him and his deputy by the state chief judge, Kashim Zannah, Shettima said he was bothered by the massive number of unemployed youths in the state, noting that it was a ticking time bomb.
“I really do not think any youth that is gainfully employed could have embarked on trekking for weeks. For me, I have taken note of two messages from these trekkers. The first message is a strong and bold reminder that there are no jobs for the youths in Nigeria.
The second, which I consider more seriously, is that Nigerian youths have the courage and strength to do what many leaders never thought they could do. If youths can trek from one state to another, it means they have potentials for good use while they have strength to revolt like Lions in the event they are pushed to the wall. We must create jobs for Nigerian youths,” he stated.
Shettima noted that the democracy day celebration was a moment of hope for the people of his state and Nigerians following the inauguration of President Muhammadu Buhari adding that enormous possibilities also lay ahead of the people.
In Gombe state, newly sworn in governor, Ibrahim Dankwambo said his administration would in the next four years focus on the improvement of agriculture, education, tourism, commerce and industry sectors of the state.
The governor made the promise in his inaugural speech shortly after taking his oath of office.
He was sworn in alongside his deputy, Charles Iliya at a well attended event that took place at the Pantami International Stadium.
Dankwambo assured the people of the state that he would sustain the principles of transparency, accountability and the rule of law.
The governor, whose oath of office was administered on him by the state chief judge, Hakila Heman, said the agriculture, education and tourism sectors would be given a boost, to make life better for the people of the state.
“In my second tenure, more funds would be injected into the sectors in order to create jobs and a favorable environment for the growth of our industries,” he said.
He said the over N19 billion was spent in the education sector and that this has started yielding the desired result, with more students getting the required credits and admission into tertiary institutions.
Dankwambo disclosed that the state specialists hospitals would be equipped and more cottage industries would be built across the state, to meet the health needs of the people.
He equally announced that the sum of N250 million would soon be released to the business sector as revolving loan, in order to boost trade and the economy of the state.
He said the cordial relationship that existed between the three arms of government led to the tremendous successes recorded in the state.
In Yobe, governor Ibrahim Gaidam, who also got re elected for a second term, asked for divine wisdom and knowledge to move the state ahead in its trying moments.
He spoke after he was sworn in by the Chief Judge of the state, Garba Nabaruma.
His deputy, Abubakar Aliyu also received the oath of office empowering them to serve for another four years.
Thousands of the residents of the state thronged to the August 27 Stadium in Damaturu amidst tight security to witness the governor and his deputy taking their oaths.
Gaidam described the occasion as “a new mandate for change and sustainable development.”
He thanked the people of the state for giving their massive votes for the All Progressives Congress, APC and also solicited for prayers and support from all and sundry for God to restore peace and grant him wisdom and knowledge to continue to pilot the affairs of the state.
Gaidam said his administration would deploy necessary resources at its disposal to end activities of insurgents, adding that it would also rebuild all the destroyed communities so that the Internally Displaced Persons, IDPs, can go back to their homes and continue their normal lives.
He promised to focus on the construction of new airport with international standard, roads and drainage networks across the 17 council areas, provision of potable drinking water, agricultural transformation, poverty alleviation, improved quality of education and job creation.
He said he would operate an open door policy to allow positive contribution and ideas from concerned citizens.
In Enugu State, the new governor, Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi, in his inaugural address urged the people of the state to prepare for tough economic challenges in the face of declining allocations from the federation account.
Ugwuanyi took his oath of office at a ceremony which held at the Okpara Square in Enugu.
He said his government would consolidate on the strides of the Sullivan Chime administration and requested for support from the people.
Governor Ugwuanyi said despite the declining revenue to the state, the government would not shirk its responsibilities to the people.
He promised to lead by example by also tightening his own belt.
“I call on the people of Enugu State to tighten your belts but tightening of belt will start with the government. All revenue generating agencies must get ready to remit to the state government – tax defaulters would no longer be counted as friends of Enugu State Government,” Ugwuanyi stated.
He itemized the areas which his administration would focus on to include agriculture, provision of critical infrastructure, healthcare, rural development, investment promotion, education, security and human capacity development.
In Delta State, the new governor, Ifeanyi Okowa, said in Asaba after taking his oath of office that it would no longer be business as usual in the state.
He said the people had become more politically conscious hence politicians could no longer afford to play with the mandate handed to them freely by the electorate.
“And on this day let it be known that the business of government can no longer be business as usual. Those of us who are politicians must realise that promises are meant to be kept; the promises that we make during electioneering campaigns matter and we are under obligation to keep them. That is the only way to maintain the trust and confidence that is necessary between the people and their leaders,” he said.
Okowa said that the vital lesson of the last general elections “is that the electorate has become more politically aware and we must conduct government business with the realisation that the day of reckoning will come sooner than later.”
He added that those entrusted with public funds must use it judiciously as there would a day of reckoning coming.
The new governor said he would strive to build a new confidence and commitment to the ideals transparency and service in order to move the state forward.
In Ogun State, second term governor, Ibikunle Amosun, vowed that the people would reelect an APC government in 2019 after they see the developments he would bring to the state in the next four years.
He said this shortly after his inauguration for second term in office at the M.K.O. Abiola International Stadium, Kuto, Abeokuta, Ogun State.
The governor said his administration would complete all the ongoing projects and also embark on new ones that would take the state to greater heights.
“We are the ones that can develop and rebuild Ogun State; nobody else can do it for us. But I cannot do it alone without your support. We will continue to work as a team to deliver projects that have direct bearing on the lives of the people. I hope by the time I will be leaving in 2019, I will handover to another governorship candidate of the APC,” he stated.
Amosun said that his administration had done its best to deliver the dividends of democracy to the state since assumption of office.
In Lagos, the new governor, Akinwunmi Ambode, said he would focus on four crucial areas of development: social development and security, infrastructural development, economic development and sustainable snvironment.
He also promised not to take the people’s mandate for granted.
He noted that despite the enormous challenges facing Lagosians, he would work to tackle them with the support of the people.
Ambode spoke shortly after he was sworn in as the 14th governor of the state at the Tafawa Balewa Square on Lagos Island.
The governor commended all Lagosians including party stalwarts for the maturity shown during the polls that saw to his emergence as governor.
“As we collectively face the challenge to make Lagos a better place to live in, we must recognise our strength in diversity. I shall run an open government of inclusion that will not leave anyone behind. No matter your age, sex, tribe or any other status, as long as you reside in Lagos, we will make Lagos work for you.”
The inauguration of newly elected governor Nasir El-Rufa’i in Kaduna State, however, did not go well as it was reported to have ended abruptly.
According to the News Agency of Nigeria, El-Rufai could not review the parade mounted by the police as some young men and women pelted dignitaries with water sachets, stones and other available objects in the pavilion.
This prompted security agents to fire tear gas into the crowd at the Murtala Square, Kaduna.
Dignitaries in the pavilion included the Emir of Zazzau, Shehu Idris, and other traditional rulers in the State.
The Murtala Square venue of the occasion had to be evacuated after the confrontation.