Thursday, May 25, 2023
Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu (GCFR)
President-elect of the Federal Republic of Nigeria
It is undisputable that Nigerians overwhelmingly elected you on the 25th February, 2023 and thus give you a shot at Leadership and service to this great Nation.
In recognition of; and total Respect for this mandate, let me congratulate you and your party, the All Progressive Congress (APC) on your well deserved victory. As you prepare to take on the mantle of leadership, I am through this medium giving you my most open mind with which I wish you great successes in your service to our dear Country.
Your Excellency, I have find it within myself to be part of the optimism in the mantra of the renewed hope you promised Nigeria. I therefore express the hope shared by all Nigerians that Nigeria will be great again. Suffice to say that, your emergence against all odds is divine. To mark your divine ordination, Nigerians jubilated across the country because we believe so much in your capacity and ability to turn things around.
Undoubtedly, we know that you are an influential grassroot politician and a visionary leader who saw ahead of your time. Today, when we look back at the advent of the Fourth Republic, many may not know the burden you bore for the movement to rid Nigeria of the scourge of the military rule. While a few of us took solace in a tight academic job, sacrificing opportunities for low wages and work-life balance, you and other compatriots found anchor in political activism and have variously influenced the direction of politics.
Your roles as both opposition and progressive team maker have been quite exciting and it is noteworthy that your resoluteness and doggedness manifested and towered the struggle when you held sway as the Governor of Lagos State and salvaged whatever was left of the opposition. Such resourcefulness was evident in the way and manner stolen mandates in Osun, Ondo, Ekiti and Edo were recovered. You did not stop at that, you built alliances outside the region to garner influence in the national polity.
You have fought the rear-guard battles and maintained control over your turf.
Your Excellency; come May 29, when you finally take oath of office as Nigeria’s President, you will become the most powerful man in the land and the new tenant of Aso Rock. It is evident that you are coming to the villa with formidable credentials and enviable clout because you have enjoyed immense grace of God in your life time. I pray to Almighty Allah to grant you long life, sound health, more wisdom and Godspeed to continue your selfless service to mankind.
Sir, the elections have now come and gone; and from my perch as a policy observer, my most immediate concerns rest on the future of this great nation, which you will start directing in a few days. No doubt you will be met with a wide variety of issues on your first day in office, daunting as the task may seem, I believe it is by no means insurmountable.
Future is not emotion. When people elect leaders, they invest them with power of attorney over their affairs. It is when the government reneges on this expectations that people resort to self-help. In spite of my admiration for the position of President, I must confess that I do not envy you; especially in consideration of the magnitude of the task and mountain of problems to tackle. It is a moment of great opportunities and herculean challenges. Obviously, we have serious challenges confronting us as a nation. That makes “the enormity of the work ahead bigger than any Presidency, but it seems clear that barely few days to your swearing-in ceremony as the 16th Nigeria’s President, a shift is in the offing. I am hopeful that in the coming weeks and months, we shall begin to see a very different style of administration. I have cause to believe that your tenure will be marked by significant achievements and you will perform exceedingly well; inshallah.
Without an iota of doubt, Mr. President-elect, we must begin to think anew, roll up our sleeves, and walk the talk. As the newly appointed 5th substantive Rector of the Federal Polytechnic Offa, my administration has set the ball rolling, there are dozens of initiated projects yet to be completed in the polytechnic community, and in the coming years we are working towards inviting you (as a visitor to the polytechnic) to commission some of these projects after the final delivery of the finished phases. An initiative has been set out but we need a lot of motivations for its execution. We are positive that our vision must have come to fruition and fulfilment by the time I will be completing my tenure in 2028. I will strive to leave behind, sustainable developments for my successor. In order to pilot the affairs of our community with internally generated revenue, 10 thematic areas will form the framework of my five-year single tenure in office. They are: knowledge and innovative hub, the town and gown model, private sector participation in collaboration with the federal government, reorientation of course curriculum to reflect modern realities and enrich the quality of our students, FEDPOFFA ventures (Platforms of business enterprise to increase it’s IGR), facilitating research grant, construction of access roads and drainages, community broadcasting (FEDPOFFA TV & Radio Station), construction of blocks of four-bedroom rent- paying staff quarters, and last but not the least; on-campus bank branches, among others.
To shape national development, our institutions have to be industry relevant. There has to be a relationship between knowledge and innovation. The world is fast morphing into an innovation-driven development; and as a polytechnic, we are at the epicenter of that evolution.
As a final point, I want to submit that the budget allocation for adequate investment in the polytechnic has fallen below the benchmark and had oscillated fairly in recent years. We are therefore appealing to the FG to rearrange its priorities and redirect its focus to recognise the importance of strategic alliance by providing commensurate funding to polytechnics.
I believe that innovations and strategic investments in technical education will lead to development in Nigeria. Therefore, we must stake our claims to the benefits of this reality and assert our relevance. I envision a work system that is synchronised; where all directorates, units, faculties and departments of the polytechnic will work in seamless harmony to deliver on the vision of the President and Commander-in-Chief.
While I know that, seeing face-to-face with you on all of the substantial issues raised, may be impossible, I hope you will choose to seek our insights, thinking and inputs on the critical issues highlighted above.
As you roll up your sleeves to begin the process of governance and restoration as it were, we are not asking for too much; we are not expecting overnight magic but we are expressing our hope that you can use your good office to bring back the good old days. I wish you success as you embrace the task of restoring Nigeria. It is also my hope that your government will engage immensely with our community. We stand ready to assist and support you in any way we can sir.
Engr. KADIRI, Kamoru Oluwatoyin PhD
FNSE, FNIEEE, FIDPM, is the Rector, Federal Polytechnic, Offa, Kwara State. He writes from Osogbo, Osun State.