By Kayode Crown
Names of eighteen commissioner nominees have been sent to the Ondo State House of Assembly by the Governor, Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu. And they are, as at this writing, being screened by the House.
And the stakes cannot be higher for those who will man the different ministry portfolios in the state.
The Governor, based in his body language till now is, is not one who welcomes sycophants.
So one hopes that those who become commissioners are not so affected by the joy of being in the position or the fear of losing it, that they would not be able to speak the truth as they see it and use their best judgement.
I expect that the incoming commissioners would be able to offer the governor very good advices, not one that will be for their own pockets and negatively impact on the image of the government and on the vision for the state.
We want eggheads, who will be able to come up with solution to seemingly big problems.
The state is truly crying for change and not the same of the same.
We expect that as different people, from a rich spectrum of backgrounds, the idea bank of the state will increase.
The people should also advice themselves not to put too much pressure on the commissioners when they are eventually appointed, in a bid to meet their pending real and imaginary needs.
While there is the need to feel the pulse of the people, not cut them off when in the corridors of power, the people should also desist from thinking that their messiahs have come.
Those coming in as commissioners are supposed to be champions of the cause of the people, and line up their thinking accordingly.
It will not be out of place if the Government organises a retreat for the commissioners when they are appointed.
It should be done immediately and not sometime later.
They need a good orientation for the job, as it is done in a proper business environment. When new employees are brought on board, they are trained for the job.
Though the positions are political appointments, we cannot deny the need for proper orientation, so that everyone will be on the same wavelength, not pulling in different directions.
They all need to be oriented to run with the vision of the government. People don’t get the vision by assumption, there must be a formal orientation program and process involved. Or what do you think?
Those who would be coming board need to make their contacts available to the state. They have experiences, they have exposures, they have unique capabilities, they have information that will benefit the governor and the state as a whole.
They should go all out, not hoard anything that they think might be of benefit to the state in anyway. Paul, in the Bible, told some people: I have not neglected telling you all that will benefit you.
Beyond their specific portfolios, the proper eggheads will have things to contribute to more than one ministries.
They should not say: “What is my own? Is that what they are paying me for? ”
It should be a collective effort driven by a collective vision.
Another point to note is that it has been insinuated in some quarters that it is the civil servants that will show the political appointees the corruption ropes to climb.
But if the wall does not open it’s mouth, the lizard will not enter, being a Yoruba proverb. The point is that the politicians need to be careful.
They should go to the ministries to do the right things and not look for ways for the wrong to be perpetuated. They should key into the overall vision of the government towards a more efficient system.
We should not have someone with static thinking among those coming in, always kicking against innovations or the need for better technology to be emplaced for things to be done better.
We don’t want somebody that will say: as it was in the beginning, is now and forever shall be.
The commissioners should be the voice of the voiceless, defend the cause of the downtrodden and not be cocooned within the AC tight cars, with their entourage, who merely tell them sweet things.
They are of good pedigree, and should be prepared and ready to serve.
They should not think only of themselves. Some of them should have it as ambition to not increase in properties throughout the duration of the tenure.
That will ensure that temptation for aggrandisement which will blind the eyes from making any progress as a leader, is curtailed.
These words might look so strict but I am sure this will save many from heartaches later on. They should be able to withstand any pressure, do the right thing and not be chicken hearted.
They need a big dose of wisdom, to be able to effectively navigate the different demands that would be confronting them from the different interest groups.
They should keep their eyes on the goals they have set before them. They need to deploy all their energies towards doing great things, making a noble name for themselves.
Some might come in and leave with the legacy of Ajasin because of how sold out they will be to the cause of the people.
Seeking immediate gratification should be far from them as they focus on making the people happy.
They need to leave the legacy of ingenuity, and brilliance. They are all brilliant people and have made something of themselves in their previous endeavours. The opportunity is now at hand for some greater. They should make it count.
This piece is an attempt to appeal to the conscience of the incoming commissioners, so that they come in to serve and nothing else.
Their names will be known across the state, but that is not enough, what is more important is for their impact to be felt for good.
Policies should be carefully thought out, but they should not suffer from endless planning; concepts must therefore flow into practice.
They will pledge, at the swearing in, to serve the state. They should not say those words mindlessly, forgetting it immediately after.
After that day they should continue to put it in mind. Or what do you think? They should keep the promise they make and not be found subverting the system.
They should make a difference, not to be power drunk and abuse their privileges.
They should always remember the son or daughter of whom they are.
And rather than go all out, when their appointments are confirmed, to party and to be involved in different levels of merriment, they need to hit the ground running.
This administration does not have all the time in the world. Time is ticking and every moment counts.
Many aspects of the state need immediate attention, the people are crying for different assistance in different ways. Therefore, the new commissioners should step up to the plate.
They should realise that they are here for such a time like this, like Mordecai told Esther. They have what it takes, they only need to give the task at hand everything it takes.