Brief Remarks by Kwara State Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq at the Investiture and Award Ceremony of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria (ICAN), Ilorin and District Society, on 27th August, 2019 in Ilorin.
Good evening ladies and gentlemen.
I start by thanking the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Nigeria, Ilorin and District Society, for the kind gesture of inviting me to join your dinner table this evening. It is a great privilege to be called to eat sumptuous dinner with members of a profession known to be so prudent that every kobo is accounted for. I hope our administration won’t have to pay for this in one way or the other. I thank you, once again.
Let me also thank you for the roles your members played in our transition committee. A number of your members were represented and we really do appreciate your inputs during that critical phase of our administration. I assure you that professionals would be well represented in our cabinet. We will ensure to put round pegs in round holes, even as we operate an open door policy that welcomes quality suggestions from reputable professional bodies like the ICAN.
Distinguished ladies and gentlemen, the last three months have been very interesting for us as an administration. Many of you must have heard whispers of my administration being very frugal with public resources. We have been accused of not spreading patronages like in the past. I can tell you that those whispers were very true.
We promised so much. We inherited nearly a red account and a debt profile not commensurate with the infrastructure on ground. But that is now in the past. What that means is that we need a great measure of financial prudence and discipline to pull through. We are therefore faced with the option of using the little resources to serve the overwhelming majority of our people or dole out patronages to the privileged minority. We chose the former and that explains the pace with which we are stabilising things in the areas of provision of water, healthcare, road rehabilitation, pensions and gratuities, education, and basic facilities.
We are in the process of launching a very ambitious social security plan that covers the most disadvantaged segments of our society. I am talking about the Kwara State Social Investment Programme Bill which we have just forwarded to the State House of Assembly. We also plan to open up this state for investments in agroprocessing and industries. We can’t successfully do that without putting in place the necessary infrastructure. So, our next budget will focus on these priority areas. We therefore need to save every kobo to make these happen.
So, I join you this evening to seek your support in this journey. We want you to join our campaign for a regime of prudent management of public resources. We don’t want to spend a kobo on anything except it serves the interest of the overwhelming majority. No more freebies. We reckon that this is a difficult route to travel in view of where Kwara State is coming from. But we believe that your support — and that of the people of Kwara State who desire sustainable development — will be very strategic to our success.