March 11, 2023, the date slated for governorship/State Assembly elections across Nigeria, is around the corner. For us in Edo State, there will be no governorship election this year. So, as we prepare to go out to elect those who will represent our various constituencies in the Edo State House of Assembly, it is good for us to look at the developmental strides of the Governor Godwin Nogheghase Obaseki-led People’s Democratic Party (PDP) government in Edo State and see reasons why we need to elect candidates of the PDP into the state House of Assembly.

While some people would like to focus on areas of the society that need government attention, it is also good for us to look at what the government has done that is of direct benefit to the people of Edo State.

A popular Christian hymn says, “Count your blessings, name them one by one.” As the song goes, if we in Edo State count our blessings, we would be surprised to see that Governor Obaseki has done much more for the people of Edo State in the past six years than we can actually count.

Let’s take out time to recall what Obaseki has done, is doing, and will continue to do for Edo State going forward.

1. Brought sanity to land administration in the state with a quality land administration system. With N50,000, you can now get a Certificate of Occupancy (C-of-O) within 60 days. No more land grabbing as Governor Obaseki has put in place a system that ensures that land grabbers are punished while ensuring justice for those whose landed property was wrongly and dubiously taken away from them.

2. Digitalization of revenue collection that brought about a healthy tax system. No more double taxation. This has resulted in increased internally generated revenue to N4 billion monthly, providing needed funds for the government to embark on projects that are of benefit to the people of Edo State.

3. Establishment of the Edo State Joint Security Network that has continued to complement the efforts of other security agencies in the state with resultant improved security in the Edo neighbourhood.

4. Provision of a conducive working environment for workers through the reconstructed Edo State Civil Service secretariat complex.

5. Establishment of the Edo Health Insurance Scheme (EdoHIS) to provide affordable healthcare to the people of Edo State.

6. Provision of the 55 Mega Watts Ossiomo Power Plant and Azurra. Almost entering the next phase for connection to homes, commercial and industrial centres.

7. Provided a conducive atmosphere for businesses in the state to thrive which has resulted in increased investment in the state.

8. Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium was remodelled and refitted to world-class, Olympic standard and equipped with state-of-the-art facilities that now play host to national and international matches.

9. Refurbished Edo State College of Agriculture and Edo State School of Nursing & Midwifery to a world-class standard.

10. Built the first Edo State Bus Terminal and car park.

11. Establishment of Edo Creative Hub and Edo Tech Park.

12. Provision of Rice Mills in Ilushi and Warake (Edo North).

13. Construction of 571 roads with a total of 845 kilometres across the length and breadth of the state.

14. Construction and establishment of John Odigie Oyegun Training Academy for continuous professional development to equip the Edo civil and public service workforce with relevant skills.

15. Edo is the only state in Nigeria where workers earn the highest minimum wage of N40,000 even when most states are not able to pay the national minimum wage of N30,000. This attests to the prudent management of resources of Godwin Nogheghase Obaseki-led PDP government.

16. Prompt payment of workers’ salaries and pensions. It is on record that workers and pensioners in Edo State look forward to the 25th of every month to receive credit alert for their salaries without fail.

17. Regular promotion of workers as and when due.

18. A well-thought education reform through the Edo Basic Education Sector Transformation (Edo-BEST) initiative that targets 1,500 public primary and junior secondary schools; 15,000 government teachers and 300,000 pupils. This initiative is now a point of reference both within and outside Nigeria.

19. With the establishment of EdoJobs, Edo Production Centre, and Edo Innovation Hub by the Obaseki-led administration, Edo State is now producing highly trained skilled youths, especially in Information Communication Technology (ICT). This has made it possible for Amazon, Google Africa, Curators University, LinkedIn, CADD Center, GIZ, Oxfam International, HPLife, Center for Women Development, Facebook, GidiMobile, etc. to deliver ICT skills training, solutions, and connect beneficiaries to jobs in the IT sector.

20. Restored the sanctity and dignity of the traditional institution in Esanland.

21. Respect for citizens’ rights and state prosecution of human rights violators.

22. Modular refinery coming on stream very soon with the potential for creating over 1,000 direct jobs and many more thousands of indirect jobs.

23. Opening of the airspace with more aircraft landing and taking off at the Benin airport.

The list is endless. The ones listed here just go to show that Governor Obaseki has done and will continue to do well.

But to ensure that there is continuous societal development, the need for harmonious relationship between the executive and legislature cannot be overstressed.

This is why the people of Edo State need to support Governor Obaseki to continue his good works by voting for candidates of the PDP in the House of Assembly election coming up on Saturday. That way, we will have a legislature that will continue to support the governor to complete all the developmental projects he has started in the state.

As we go out to vote on March 11 for the House of Assembly members, let us remember the admonition in Philippians 4:8: “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.”

Governor Obaseki deserves the support of the Edo people to continue his developmental strides. A vote for PDP House of Assembly candidates in the forthcoming election is a vote for continuous progress in the state.