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Apollo otherwise known as acute hemorrhagic conjunctivitis is a pandemic of a new enterovirus infection of the eyes. In June 1969, an epidemic of a new type of conjunctivitis was reported in Accra, the capital of Ghana but was nicknamed Apollo because it coincided with the time of the Apollo 11 landing on the moon. The incubation period is 24 hours or less and was found three years later in Japan where ophthalmologists called it Acute Hemorrhage Conjunctivitis (AHC). Like every disease of the eyes, it impedes one’s vision and discomforts the eyes.

Sight is power. Seeing is believing. A man cannot go far in life except his sight is above the blurring mirages of life. We are controlled by what we see than what’s heard. Just close your eyes to understand what visual impairment means. It’s a dark world where everything and anything is better imagined than real. We solely rely on the interpretations of others and it doesn’t matter whether they are right or wrong because we do not have the power to judge.

The Apollo leadership best captures the case of Kwara PDP, the major opposition party in the state whose loyalists’ sight appears fairly challenged, struggling to see the progress the state has achieved from 2019 to date. They have neither seen the construction and rehabilitation of educational infrastructure that has been left to rot since 2013 nor the unbiased recruitment of qualified teachers into the education system.

They are still scuffling to behold how the Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq led administration despite inheriting billions of naira in unpaid salaries, pension and gratuities is fixing the decay with prompt salaries as and when due, sorting of promotional arrears for senior secondary school students or how pensioners are more happier with the N100 million monthly payment of gratuities from an insufficient N30 million monthly pay.

Apollo convinces us that nothing is wrong really as it would fade away in a moment but who doesn’t know that we are challenged from facing the sun unhurt? Kwara PDP sees nothing wrong with the dilapidated Oro and Lafiagi General Hospitals, shortage of basic and resuscitative equipment at the General Hospital.

As a matter of fact, the opposition wants Kwarans to easily forget that 27 primary healthcare centers have been fixed so far while more doctors and nurses have been employed which has boosted the confidence in the state public health facilities. They are not concerned that the state has recorded over 1 million attendance in public secondary health facilities while primary care attendance improved to over 300,000 cases. A percentage increase of more than 500%. Flabbergasting!

Does it matter to the opposition that deaths due to complications from pregnancy or childbirth in Kwara State reduced from over 1000 to 20 per 100,000 deaths, the second lowest in the country? Or the undeniable fact that death of an infant before his or her first birthday reduced to 0.4 from 2.6 per 1000 live births?

Do we need to clear the debris in the eyes of the Apollo leadership that the state moved from 36th position in 2019 to 18 in 2020 with immunization coverage level in the whole 16 local government areas?

Is it possible to say the effect of Acute Hemorrhage Conjunctivitis is responsible for opposition’s blurred vision to not have noticed the ongoing dualisation of Yebumot-AlHikmah-Adeta Road, completed section of 33km Ilesha Baruba – Gwanara road amidst the deplorable state of that road in time past nor the ongoing construction of 11.1km Osi-Obbo Aiyegunle Road?

Apollo leadership will bring nothing, but piecemeal interventions as real dividends of democracy. It’s like the sumptuous title of Soyinka’s book: ‘The Beautification of Area Boys’.

For example, the much celebrated Saraki welfarism package, Ile Arugbo where old women walked 3 to 5km to receive N300 and eat stale food was replaced with a state-funded and more dignifying social investment program as a decent alternative to what obtained in the past with a legislated and data-driven Owo Arugbo which saw the vulnerable getting stipends in their respective houses.

Even petty traders and youths who are often used for political thuggery have been empowered via Owo Isowo (non-interest loans) and Kwapreneurs which ensured that 170 youths received between N250,000 and N3 million, depending on the scale of their business and viability of their proposal, as judged by a neutral panel.i Ths is indeed beyond Apollo leadership

Apollo leadership will only give rise to lilliputian leader. With a lilliputian leader, you celebrate mediocrity. This is why we cannot afford to be plundered again. Everyone in Kwara State can testify to the sanctity in the governance space.

Whatever the shortcomings, the administration has set up various agencies to check institutional gaps that allow wanton misuse of public funds

Mediocrity of having over 6,000 households without access to clean water in 2019 has changed to over 10,000 household with constant and potable water in 2020. More than 8 waterworks have been fixed while 2 are currently undergoing construction.

Apollo is contagious and we have suddenly seen in the exact direction of the Apollo representative to the extent that it’s difficult for us to glimpse at the shining sun.


Those who want to follow Apollo leadership can’t see reasons but fear of what next to eat, comfort of office, ignorance or the combination of all have impeded them to know that having an Apollo leadership will hurt us and take Kwara another 8 years backwards.


Tobi Matthew tweets at @tobbiematthew

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APC SAK: On March 18, Our Vote Should Be For AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq- Qudus Adelodun



Just like the February 25th election is now history, March 18, the new date of the gubernatorial and state assembly elections, is also around the corner and would also become history in the nick of time. One significant thing however is that we cannot afford to get it wrong in our dear state, Kwara. Citizens must vote right and vote wisely.

The March 18th poll is a choice between maladministration and good governance. Never must we allow darkness to triumph over light! Any mistake could cost us a whole lot; something fatal than we had experienced in the past. That’s why for me, I choose AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq (Mr. Capacity) over the assemblage of desperate and disgruntled politicians.

Kwarans, we must never forget where we came from. Four years ago, we liberated ourselves from the hands of desperate, arrogant and self-serving politicians who had arrogated our state and all its resources to themselves. They had no regard for human dignity. They failed in governance and administration.

We must never forget that we came from an era where civil servants did not get their salaries and entitlements as and when due. We must never forget that we came from an era where senior citizens who are retirees did not get their pensions and gratuities. We must never forget that we came from a regime where the water question could not be tackled head-on and our people were at the mercy of tankers to access something as basic as water. We must never forget we came from a regime that was rocked with all kinds of financial scandals, misappropriation, lack of value for money and widespread corrupt practices that drew our state several years back. It was under this same era that UBEC grant worth billions of naira was diverted, taking our basic education many years backwards.

Kwarans, we must never forget all these atrocities and scenarios as we approach the gubernatorial and state assembly elections to make an all-important decision. As we go to the polls, we must also bear in mind the landmark transformation and remarkable change that have happened across sectors of the state.

Starting from what was practically ground zero, AbdulRazaq has taken our state to enviable heights. From a state with no functional tractor in 2019, Kwara is now recognised as one of the rice producing states in the country due to his major investments in agriculture and support for farmers. From a state with no functional ambulance in 2019, Kwara was applauded for its exemplary role in managing COVID-19 and is now the state that houses the largest Intensive Care Unit (ICU) in the whole of central Nigeria. The state now has ventilators. Our Isolation Centre is renovated and refurbished to a standard taste. Our long-abandoned Oxygen Plant in Sobi is now up and running. All these are results of prudence and capacity.

With the quantum of works this administration has done in the last four years, there is no ward in Kwara State today where it doesn’t have a project. The administration has established bold government presence in all the wards constituting the state. Young people and women are given recognition like never before in the state. The same state where youths were relegated to nothing and/or as ‘good boys’ is now where they get million naira grants to boost their entrepreneurial desires. This stands commendable! And this is the same fashion in which the government has been supporting every segment and demography of the society.

One thing I will never forget to add is the conducive political environment this administration has created. Opposition and dissenting voices are not been silenced or muzzled. It was so bad under the previous regime that opposition elements dare not attend events that the governing personalities attend. Everything has changed. People now have the platforms to ventilate their views without nursing the fear of being chased about by good boys.

The political culture has also changed drastically. Yesterday, you had to practically crawl and genuflect for the hegemons to grow in politics and government. Today, nobody does that. Political offices have been largely demystified. You now have the sense that political office holders are more or less like you, and that you can also be one in the nearest future.

Kwarans, we must never forget. We must allow the consolidation of this transformative foundation that has already been laid. On Saturday, March 18, we should all come out en masse to vote Mr. Capacity AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq. He is the man who has shown capacity where others failed woefully.

Adelodun writes from Oro, Kwara State

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March 11: Dear Kwarans, Let Us Do Four More With AbdulRazaq By Abdulquadri Mahmud



A few weeks before the presidential and national assembly elections, I was very optimistic that my fellow Kwarans would vote for the candidates of the All Progressives Congress (APC) because of the unprecedented achievements the state has recorded under the party. And as God would have it, they did. They voted APC from top to bottom. Their action no doubt shows that they are progressives and do not want any party (PDP) that will reverse their gains over the last three years. It also shows that they do not want a Saraki dynasty that will take them back to the era of geri-gedi and all sorts of maladministration.

I want to take this opportunity to thank Kwarans for choosing to be progressives. Also, I want them to know that there is no chaff in all the candidates they elected. They’ll represent us well at the national level and fulfill their campaign promises.

However, Kwarans should know that our dear state will not be fully progressive if we fail to re-elect Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq whose achievements in the last three years have brought Kwara back on track. The governor has done well for us and the best way to compensate him for his good intentions towards us and our dear state is to come out en masse on March 11 to cast our votes for him. Among all the candidates vying for the post, AbdulRazaq is the only candidate who means well for Kwara.

AbdulRazaq was tested and he delivered. He comforted Kwarans and recorded the achievements his predecessors could not record in their 16 years of misruling and looting Kwara state. Bukola Saraki and his stooge Abdul Fatah Ahmed had almost sold Kwara on Jumia before AbdulRazaq came on board. They had sold many properties belonging to the state government. Despite this, they did not pay civil servants salaries. Despite this, they could not fix bad roads and schools whose structures were terrible and posed threats to students.

It was AbdulRazaq’s emergence that brought relief and renewed our hope in Kwara state. All the things that could have benefited Kwarans such as the 30,000 naira minimum wage, provision of potable water, and others, Saraki and Abdul Fatah failed to deliver them. They treated Kwarans like they were not humans while they comforted their party loyalists with the state’s treasury. It was the AbdulRazaq-led administration that changed the story. Today, our people have access to potable water and receive the 30,000 naira minimum wage among others.

To continue unraveling the progress, growth, and developments we see today in all parts of our dear Kwara, we must ensure AbdulRazaq’s victory at the polls on March 11. That’s the only way to prevent Saraki and his hungry boys from coming back to loot our treasury. The Saraki dynasty has nothing to offer other than misery, suffering, and poverty. That’s why we must do everything legal to prevent the dynasty from raping Kwara again.

Dear Kwarans, “let’s march to victory and progress”. Let’s do four more with a trustworthy, receptive, and responsive AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq. He remains the best man for the job. Kwarans do not need someone who will be waiting for his greedy and merciless leader’s directive before he can attend to their needs. What Kwarans need is someone who has the wherewithal to run her affairs and that person is Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq!

Abdulqaudri Mahmud writes from Ilorin East LGA, Zango Ward, Ilorin Kwara state

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Why Kwarans Shouldn’t Fall For Saraki’s New Gimmick- Abdulqaudri Mahmud



When Bukola Saraki realized that his several propaganda to pit Kwarans against Governor AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq’s performing government didn’t work, he directed all his followers to start begging Kwarans to vote for the presidential candidate of the People’s Democratic Party, Atiku Abubakar if they can’t vote for the party’s governorship candidate, Abdullahi Yaman. He said the former’s victory was more important than the latter’s. The former Senate President didn’t just say this, he has discovered that well-meaning Kwarans are in full support of AbdulRazaq’s second-term bid.

However, Kwarans should be very careful and shouldn’t fall for Saraki’s new gimmick. Even though Saraki has failed to tell his followers why he prefers Atiku’s victory to Yaman’s, some of us know his reason. Saraki knows that Yaman can’t win AbdulRazaq at the polls, therefore, if Atiku wins he is going to help him claim either by force or by raping the court. Currently, Saraki’s boys have been meeting unsuspecting Kwarans and begging them to vote for Atiku if they can’t vote for Yaman. That’s why you will barely see them campaign for Yaman in the last few weeks.

This essayist urges Kwarans not to fall for Saraki’s evil plans against them and the progressive state. The steady development and unprecedented achievements of the present administration have been giving Saraki and his retrogressive camp a serious headache and they are sad that Governor AbdulRazaq is doing what they couldn’t do for the people in their 16 years of governance in Kwara state.

From Saraki’s campaign rallies and his very recent interview on Sobi FM, it is glaring that he does not mean well for Kwara state and Kwarans. Saraki said the AbdulRazaq-led government had failed. If I may ask him, a government that pays salaries and promotes workers has failed? A government that repairs roads and renovates schools has failed? A government that provides potable water for its people has failed? A government that provides good teaching materials and introduced KwaraLEARN has failed? A government that creates jobs and pays the 30,000 minimum wages has failed?

Saraki is a sadist and he doesn’t mean well for Kwara state. His return will be a disaster for our dear state. May Saraki not happen to us again. If not for the Otoge movement in 2019, it is only God that knows where Kwara would have been by now. Bukola and his protege Abdulfatah Ahmed crumbled the state. Workers were owed months’ salaries, no potable water for the people, the structures of schools were terrible as students studied under the trees, no learning materials in classrooms, pensions, and gratuities were not paid, and hospitals were not hospitable. These are what Saraki calls achievements that AbulRazaq has not replicated which made him a failure, according to Saraki.

The Otoge movement gave us a brilliant, smart, and progressive AbdulRazaq. In all the areas Saraki and Abdulfatah had failed, AbdulRazaq has done well in the areas. Therefore, dear Kwarans, the 2023 presidential election and national assembly elections are this Saturday, February 25, let’s cast our votes for all the APC’s candidates and most importantly, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. It’s our massive votes for Tinubu and other candidates that can stall Saraki’s evil plots against us and our dear state.

Abdulqaudri Mahmud writes from Ilorin East LGA, Zango Ward, Ilorin Kwara state

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