By; OLADELE ADEDAYO, Ado-Ekiti
A governorship aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), in Ekiti state, Hon. Muyiwa Coker, has expressed readiness to ensure that the state finances get improved if emerges party’s candidate at the primaries and eventually becomes Governor of the state come July 14 this year.
“We can restructure our finances. As a trained stock exchange trader, there are lots of instruments that we can play with to offset our debt that will benefit the state on the long run. There is need to restructure the finances of the state for it to become attractive to investors; it’ is my field, I know what to do and I am only requesting for the necessary support to get there”.
The Governorship hoppeful however promised to use the office of governor to better the lot of Ekiti people.
Coker spoke during his tour of the 16 local government areas of the state to meet with party members during which he presented his agenda.
The governorship election holds in July 14 this year.
Muyiwa Coker,a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN) and stock market trader,said that he was in contact with some partners working with the United Nations on the establishment of an integrated agricultural initiative specially tailored for Ekiti.
“We plan to establish mechanized farms which would process farm produce for consumption by our people and create employment and wealth. We hope to create direct employment for at least 25, 000 youths immediately the project kicks off across the State. To achieve this we’d 200,000 hectares of land in the State for the project”, the aspirant told the APC members. The plan is to create at least 500,000 direct & indirect employment within a year and we would ensure that this is evenly distributed across the State. Hopefully this will steadily progress to over 1 million jobs (direct and indirect employment) as we develop the agriculture value chain for each crop planted. “
The governorship contender also spoke of plans to revive the educational sector of Ekiti with massive investments from partners in the United Kingdom with whom there is an ongoing discussion.
“Equally we plan to attract technical and financial investment in vocational training with the South Korean, Germany and France through my contact with similar intervention in Ogun State where I am closely monitoring things as a consequence of my relationship with the Government of the State.
“Presently, no one can precisely say how much Ekiti is making as IGR. The figure making the rounds is between N2b & N3b per year. We hope to massively improve on these figures so as to deliver democratic dividends to Ekiti people. We plan to achieve this upsurge in IGR without imposing additional burden on the tax paying public. We will, for instance, ingeniously block leakages and expand the revenue base through increased economic activities arising from local and foreign direct investment that our government will attract to Ekiti State
“There are 48 months in the four-year tenure of the governor. I plan, as governor, to do things differently in the area of government’s genuine visibility in each of the local governments. What we intend to do is that, in each month, we would focus on a LGA where we will engage all stakeholders there to address issues they may have and assess the area’s economic potentials. This will involve the physical visits of the Governor and the executive council to the LGA.”
“There would be no political appointee that would be sworn into office without a letter of clearance from his ward; this is to make government appointees know and be familiar with their people in the ward. In short we will engage the LGAs in matters of appointment.
On infrastructural development, he told the party members: “We need to think of how to make things better in Ekiti and there are towns and villages in the state that I know when I was a little boy that are still the same way they were 40 years ago. We need to start thinking out of the box. We need to think of how we can make money for Ekiti without collecting money from the federal government. There are lots of resources in Ekiti that can spin lots of money for the general well-being of the people.
“All we need to do is work together with one mind. The time to work is now. We need to use our votes to change the way things are in Ekiti. Politicians will come with money to induce you. You must always remember the future our state and of your children. Use your votes and use them right, vote for credible candidates; Ekiti needs to come back to God. If a government in power is not good, know that the people in power are not close to God, we need prayers for our state. My coming into politics is to harness the vast resources scattered all over Ekiti for the benefit of our people. As far back as 2015, I made up my mind to do all I can to help the party and the state. I have been in the fore front of covering the nakedness of the party at a time no one was there for the party in the state”.
On the huge debt of Ekiti, he said the state could be financially stable.
His words: “We only need to think out of the box . We need leaders who have the knowledge of managing resources. That is what I am bringing into government. I am an accountant and a trained stock exchange trader.