Traditional rulers as well as women and youth groups have endorsed Kogi governor Yahaya Bello’s bid for a fresh tenure in the Nov. 2 governorship election.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the endorsement was the climax of a three-day event supervised by the Office of the Special Adviser to the governor on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs.
The event, held in Lokoja from Monday to Wednesday, featured speeches by traditional rulers, as well as leaders of women and youths groups.
The speakers expressed support for Bello’s ambition, and premised that stance on the need to allow him to consolidate on his achievements.
Oba Solomon Owoniyi of Kabba, in his speech, said that Bello had done much for the state and deserved a fresh mandate so as to do even more.
“Kogi cannot change the horse in the midstream; we must support Bello to take us to greater heights,” he said.
He particularly lauded the governor for accommodating “youths and children of nobody” in his government, noting that Bello restored the Kabba stool to his family after 200 years.
Some speakers from Kogi Central Senatorial district commended the governor for upgrading traditional stools in the district as well as his achievements in the provision of water, roads and security.
The Olu of Magongo, Sambola Ojo, commended the governor for starting very well, saying that he had impacted on the lives of his people in the areas of health, electricity and the upgrading of the Magongo traditional stools to first and second classes.
Those who spoke for Kogi East reaffirmed their resolve to support the governor’s second term bid, with the the Eje of Olamaboro, Simeon Ujah, saying that his community was neglected for 16 years and was only salvaged by Bello.
The Special Adviser to the governor on Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Dr Abubakar Ohere, said that Bello had improved on the state’s economy, especially with the establishment of a rice mill factory in Omi.
“The rice factory in Omi, which is due for inauguration soon, will be the second largest in the north and provide 30,000 direct jobs.
“The mill will also provide 50,000 indirect employment opportunities,” he said.
He commended the Bello-led government for its “equitable application of the state’s lean resources”, and lauded him for the cassava revolution and oil palm plantations that improved the economy in the central and east senatorial districts.
Responding, Governor Bello assured the people of a better deal if elected as governor for a second term come Nov. 2.
Bello assured the people that he would neither take their support and loyalty for granted nor disappoint them, urging them to see themselves as one people and remain committed to the growth and development of Kogi.