By Maureen Nwine and Emily Eghosa
In an effort to uphold a transparent and accountable government, the Governor Godwin Obaseki-led Administration has organized a comprehensive two-day onboarding programme for newly elected Chairmen, Vice Chairmen, Secretaries as well as Heads of Local Government Administrations across the 18 Local Government Areas of the State.
The event, facilitated by the Strategy, Policy, Project and Performance Management Office (SPPPMO), at the John Odigie Oyegun Public Service Academy (JOOPSA) at the State headquarters is aimed at educating the new Local Government Executives on the Governor Obaseki’s MEGA agenda which revolves around the wellbeing of Edo people as well as the gains of inclusive governance.
Addressing the participants, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Osarodion Ogie Esq., emphasized the imperative nature of prioritizing the welfare and security of their respective communities. He underscored that governance is fundamentally about serving the people, making it vital for the local government officials to be actively engaged in the service of their communities.
Urging the officials to always be present and available in order to effectively fulfill their duties, Ogie charged the HOLGAs to ensure optimal service delivery by eradicating any instances of ghost workers within the system. He highlighted cases where certain Local Government employees were absent from their duties, yet continued to receive salaries, a practice that needs to be rectified promptly.
The SSG expressed his disapproval of a situation where any Chairman or Vice Chairman is inaccessible in their Local Government, emphasizing their role as the government’s representatives, being entrusted with the responsibility of vigilance over local affairs.
The SSG further advised the Chairmen and Vice Chairmen to execute their duties diligently, stressing the importance of leaving behind a positive legacy that could foster sustainable governance for future generations.
On his part, the Edo State Commissioner for Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, Hon. Monday Osaigbovo JP, maintained that the purpose of the onboarding is for the Local Government Executives to know what the state has done and made easy for them while commending the efforts of Governor Godwin Obaseki in transforming the local government arm of the state.
Tasking the newly elected chairmen on their responsibility towards delivering quality services to their residents, Hon. Osaigbovo said, “Today we are here for the onboarding of the newly elected local government Chairmen, Vice Chairmen, and their appointed secretaries and heads of local government administrations. The council administrators should live up to their responsibilities, among which is environmental sanitation. If you take a look at the state, when the lights are on at night time, what we see around are dirt. It is the responsibility of local governments to ensure that our environments are clean at all times”.
Similarly, Mrs. Sarah Ajose Adeogun, the Special Adviser on Strategy, Policy, Projects and Performance Management, underscored the significance of the ongoing reforms, not only for the present, but also for future generations. She stressed that the onboarding aims to emphasize the necessity of generating enhanced revenue streams for the State, leveraging available resources, particularly the human resources.
Mrs. Adeogun encouraged the Local Government Executives to harness the talents of youths in their various communities so as to channel their technological abilities towards positive enterprises, thus contributing to a stronger, more progressive and sustainable Edo State.