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Ilorin Emirate Buries Differences, Unanimous On Gov. AbdulRazaq's Continuity, Leaving Opposition In The Cold By Abiodun Mohammed

The focus of the 2021 Annual IEDPU Conference was not the 2023 elections but by default, it emerged as a barometer to measure the performance of Gov AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq.

The Goal of the Conference was two pronged , first to conduct a review of developmental progress of the ancient city and total well being of the people; and secondly to conduct elections to the Unions Exco.

 Participants and those who watched the live coverage of the event cannot deny the historic political import and gains of the event to Governor AbdulRahaman AbdulRazaq as the incumbent Governor of the State and proud bonafide son of the soil . This was evident in the address of the Emir of Ilorin, Dr Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari “Because of your respect for the traditional institution and simplicity, we shall continue to support and pray for you. We are proud of you ,we are proud of your achievements..”

For three years, 2019, 2020 and 2021, the Emir has been consistent and emphatic at eulogizing Governor AbdulRahaman AbdulRazaq as a role model in leadership, being the first bonafide son of the soil who, despite being the Governor of the State, set protocol aside in his un-common respect for tradition and customs.

"Governors before you would keep us waiting long before their arrival but Your Excellency chose to wait for us, each time, demonstrating that being a true son of the soil, and you have earned our respect ,love and blessings."
Evidently, this is a rare royal blessing for the Governor.

It is the third year in a row that the Emir has consistently expressed his compliments, prayers and full endorsement of the Governor 
It is believed that such royal blessings have divine touch to see the beneficiary through in his ambition or undertaking.

In the tradition of Ilorin society, this is taken as the verdict of the Emirate which is binding on all sons and daughters of the land.

In Ilorin and most parts of the State, such is the overwhelming effect of royal blessings.
Ilorin is a unique ancient city rooted in deep Islamic tradition. 

Governor AbdulRahaman appears well tutored, schooled and grounded in deft management of his relationship with the traditional institution and the Ulama unlike some of his predecessors as history reveals.

Late Governor Muhammed Lawal was not that lucky as his political opponents brought about his estrangement from traditional leadership of the Sheikh Alimi dynasty, using all kinds of propaganda. 

The AGF AbdulRazaq Family is reputed and acknowledged as Advisers and trusted counsels to the Royal House of Alimi as traditional holder of the high title of the Mutawalli of Ilorin. Consequently, the shenanigans of opposing politicians to create any friction therein has always been futile. 

This year's Conference of the Ilorin Emirate Descendants Progressive Union was not just another Talkshop for sons and daughters of the ancient city and the Kwara State capital. It was an opportunity for the city's foremost development Organization and the traditional institution to give an objective assessment of the performance of the Govt of the day 
Like previous years, the Governor, on arrival, went straight to pay homage to the Emir. He was accompanied by the Senator, representing Kwara Central, distinguished Senator Dr.Ibrahim Yahaya Oloriegbe, key Government officials and prominent supporters.

His Royal Highness, Dr. Ibrahim Sulu-Gambari, the Emir of Ilorin was full of praises for the Governor for the un- common respect accorded him as the paramount traditional ruler of Ilorin and the Chairman of the State's traditional Council to the admiration of other traditional rulers in the country.  

"This governor's action is unprecedented; he has proved to be a true son of Ilorin and a patriot who sees himself as not only as an ordinary citizen but also one of us in the Emirate "
The Emir said that due to the respect the Governor has for the traditional institution and his focus on developments of the state, all "Dahiri"-(the true sons and daughters of Ilorin) have put behind their differences to unite behind the Governor. 

Certainly, true indigenes of Ilorin would understand the import of the Emir's statement . It was an endorsement by His Royal Highness and council of Ulamas of Governor AbdulRahaman AbdulRazaq's laudable achievements.

This endorsement is an irredeemable blow to the opposition, the Peoples Democratic Party, which had no enviable track record of respect for Traditional institution.

 There was never a record of Leadership of previous Government waiting for the Emir to arrive at any function. Rather, that was the time traditional institution was reduced to receiving an American Rapper , Shawn Carter a.k.a Jay Z at the Ilorin Airport.

 It was also an era that traditional rulers were lined up at the Ilorin International Airport to recieve 800 Jersey breed of cows imported from South Africa.

The National President of IEDPU Alhaji Aliyu Otta Uthman commended the Governor for his exceptional diligence and unwaivering patriotism, stating that the Union absolutely agreed with the Emir who described the Governor as a pride of not only Ilorin Emirate but the whole of Kwara.

Alhaji Uthman said that the Union had never had it so good with any administration in the State in recent times as he expressed the hope that the government of Kwara State would address the challenges facing Ilorin Emirate with more vigour.

The Chief Missioner of Ansaru-l-Islam Society of Nigeria Sheikh Abdulmumin Ayara who gave a lecture titled "Ilorin past, present and future" observed that the city is gifted with great personalities who stood out for their sacrifices, patriotism, and dedication to the Islamic heritage of the Emirate.

The Islamic Scholar called on all indigines of Ilorin to unite, promote peace and enhance the economic fortune of the city.

The cleric also hailed Governor AbdulRahaman's strides in infrastructure and human capital development, and acknowledged how Governor AbdulRazaq is striving to turn Kwara to an investment destination.

In his address, the Governor thanked the traditional institution and the IEDPU for their support and urged them to continue to work with his administration.

"As a son of Ilorin, I am immensely grateful for your support to this administration. I do not take it for granted. I also urge you to continue to support us," he said. 

The Governor acknowledged the working relationship between his administration and the IEDPU. The state government was supportive of the Police Secondary School, Balla in Asa Local Government Area which was recently handed over to the Federal Government who also personally donated to the ongoing ICT and Skill Acquisition Centre being built by the Development Union in Ilorin. 

Besides, the Governor highlighted major projects being embarked upon by his administration to change the status of the state.
"We are putting many things in place to secure the place of Ilorin as a major hub in Nigeria.

The Ilorin international conference centre, the Oncology centre, the eight-wing squash court, the garment factory, the Ilorin innovation hub, and the visual arts centre are all major signature projects that will drive huge economic traffic to Ilorin and Kwara State as a whole"the Governor said.

"As Ilorin grows in population and economic size, we are confronted with a challenge of managing the environment. This is why we have awarded the design of another master plan for Ilorin. In the next few days, we are bringing in new waste management firms to improve timely evacuation of increasing human waste within the metropolis."

He said that the government's commitment to human capital development is evident, recalling how not less than 1,668 competent indigenes of Ilorin Emirate were recently recruited for teaching through a process he described as the most transparent in the recent history of the state.

This year's IEDPU conference is no doubt unique because of its focus on the development of the Ilorin Emirate and for the first time devoid of ugly Politics of the opposition. .It was peaceful and devoid of thuggery and mudslinging associated with the previous regime. 

It was overwhelming the applause and fervent support accorded the Governor by thousands of participants at the conference ; they hailed the Governor intermittently as the best Governor ever in the history of Kwara State.

The second day of the 56th annual conference of the union witnessed peaceful conduct of election for a new national executives of the union.

Alhaji Aliyu Uthman Otta was re- elected un- opposed.

This also indicates the mass approval of the synergy between the IEDPU leadership and Governor AbdulRahaman AbdulRazaq as blessed by the Emir of Ilorin and evident multiplier effects of all these in the minds of the majority of the sons and daughters of Ilorin Emirate.

Given the superlative performance of Governor AbdulRahaman AbdulRazaq in all sectors ,his un- common humility and respect in his relationship with all strata of the society particularly traditional, religious and political leaders in Ilorin in particular and the State as a whole ,it is evident that the main opposition party evidently have a very huge task to reverse the Otoge Tsunami that swept them out of power three years ago. The message from Ilorin Community to the nation through this Conference of all Ilorin Emirate Descendants Progressive Union is clearly uniform in its collective consensus of adopting Governor AbdulRahaman AbdulRazaq for second term in the 2023 Governorship Elections . This has dealt a knockout blow to the hasty decision of Sarakis PDP to zone 2023 Gubernatorial PDP ticket to Kwara North.

Since his inauguration in May 29 2019 as the Governor of Kwara State ,Governor AbdulRahaman AbdulRazaq has lived upto the full expectation of the traditional ,religious and political leaders of Ilorin Emirate while maintaining equity ,fairness and justice with the other two Senatorial districts in all his political appointments and distribution of infrastructural facilities and other dividends of democracy .

Abiodun Mohammed lives in Ilorin, the Kwara State Capital

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