It was a day of joy and a harvest of encomiums for two lawmakers in the Oyo State House of Assembly, as they were adjudged the best legislators in the pace-setter state by a Lokoja-based non-government organisation, Centre for Ethics and Self Value Evaluation (CESVO) recently. The lawmakers, Honourable Akeem Ige representing Ibadan South East State Constituency II and his colleague from Atiba State Constituency, Honourable Gbenga Oyekola, scored 78 and 77 per cent in the assessment criteria drawn by CESVO.
The lawmakers, having satisfied the requirement set by the Lokoja-based organisation, were consequently inducted into its Hall of Fame as Ambassadors of Ethics and Conscience as part of the many individuals and organisations adjudged the most ethically responsible in the country. They were issued legislators’ performance appraisal and gold medals for distinguishing themselves among their colleagues.
Speaking at the induction ceremony held at the Parliament Building, Agodi, Ibadan, the Executive Director CESVO, Salih Musa Yakubu, explained that at the end of year 2017 assessment carried out by the body, 50 tertiary institutions, 12 commissioners of police and senior police officers, 50 federal ministries, departments and agencies,13 Senators, 38 members of the House of Representatives, 50 private hospitals, lawmakers from six state Houses of Assemblies came tops.
Salih gave an account of how CESVO discreetly monitored the activities of the state legislators, using parammeters such as the views of the people they represent, empowerment programmes and representation on the floor of the house, the pedigree of the lawmakers, among other criteria.
According to him, “we have ensured presence in most of the programmes and activities of these two lawmakers and have sampled opinions, interviewed the citizens, including workers, on your stewardship so far as members of the state assembly.
“We have been keeping close watch on your quality service delivery. From our findings, you have used character to change the pattern of representation of the people, the type exemplified by our heroes past.
“We are indeed overwhelmed by your people’s testimonies of your leadership style and your recommendations during our field work at your constituency. We have interviewed market women, the artisans, the security personnel, the students of both secondary and tertiary institutions, the leadership of women and youth organisations, other non-indigenous men and women residing in your constituency including traditional title holders,” he said.
In his remark on the occasion, the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Slaiu Adetunji, praised the awardees for embarking on humanitarian services and providing quality representation to the people in their constituencies. Olubadan, who was represented by his media aide, Adeola Oloko, charged the lawmakers not to relent in giving their constituents and the state the best of the abilities, urging them to see the honour as a tonic to do more for humanity.
A Yoruba Oba from the Republic of Ireland, Oba Saheed Olamilekan Adufe, showered praises on the lawmakers, asking them to keep up the “sterling performances.” Also speaking on the occasion, the deputy chairman of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state, Alhaji Mufutau Ogunremi; chairman, Ibadan Week Festival 2018, Nurudeen Akinade; and a senior lecturer from the Ladoke Akintol University of Technology, Dr Saheed Ige, eulogised the awardees for adding value to governance as responsible lawmakers.
While responding on behalf of the awardees, Honourable Oyekola lauded the organisation for finding them worthy for the honour bestowed on them. He explained that their determination to make life better for the people they represent in particular and the people of the state in general earned them the award. He assured the organisers and their constituents that they would continue to work hard for the development of humanity and the state, adding that no effort would be spared at improving the lives of the people.
He noted that the subversion of the value system and the consequent collapse of morals necessitated the breeding of a political class that is greedy and corrupt, wondering why money that should be deployed for developmental use of society would end up in private pockets of those in government or their cronies.
The lawmaker promised that they would contribute their quota to promote and encourage the organisation’s effort at promoting core value system geared towards eradicating corruption in the country.
Centre for Ethics and Self Value Evaluation is a non-state-actor which majors in exposing corruption, promoting ethical leadership, providing ethical education and value orientation of global citizens. The body carries out this mandate annually by engaging in discreet independent assessment of projects in federal, states, local government areas as well as the Federal Capital Territory (FCT). This is done with a view to conducting an independent multi-sectoral assessment of projects by public officials without their prior knowledge to avoid any possible influence on the outcome of the assessment.
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