Outgoing governor of Oyo State, Sen. Abiola Ajimobi, says he will be leaving a legacy of peace, security and development in the state.
The governor said this while fielding questions from State House correspondents after a closed door meeting with President Muhammadu Buhari at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.
According to him, his administration has succeeded in restoring peace and tranquility in Oyo State.
He said: “At a time, Oyo State was seen as what you call a garrison state, today Oyo State is one of the peaceful states in Nigeria.
“If our government has not done anything at all, we have brought peace and tranquility and development to Oyo state. It’s been a worthwhile venture.
“Many of us could sit back and say I retired as an MD of a multinational but if we sit back and play the ostrich, we will see that evil will always triumph when men of goodwill fail to act.
“I want to say that Ajimobi came, brought peace to Oyo State and added value to the socioeconomic development of the state and to Nigeria in general.’’
Ajimobi alsonexpressed appreciation to the president for coming to the rescue of state governments during the period of scarcity of funds to execute projects, and to pay salaries and pensions in the states.
He revealed that many states, including Oyo, do not owe salaries due to the Federal Government’s financial support and assistance.
“I want to thank President Buhari for the support he has given all the states particularly during the period of scarcity of funds to execute our projects, to pay salaries, to meet the socio-economic development demands.
“He (Buhari) was on hand to help all of us. He supported us by releasing funds to all of us and as at today that I am talking most of the states including Oyo State do not owe salaries.
“He also assisted us with social infrastructure, that is extending the welfare nets to the states,” he said.
The governor, who disclosed that he would be embarking on Umrah (Lesser Hajj) to Saudi Arabia, said he was in the Presidential Villa to thank Buhari for all that he did for Oyo and other 35 states of the federation.
“I am going for Umrah to thank God and by the time I come back I won’t be in office as governor.
“When I came in, I pleaded with God to give me the opportunity to serve peacefully and that He did.
“I also want to thank the people of Oyo State for allowing me to be the first governor to do two terms of eight years, it has never happened in Oyo State,’’ he added.
On his regrets while in office in the last eight years, Ajimobi that he only regretted the fact that he was unable to do everything he wanted to do for the people of the state.
He said: “I think I regret the fact that I have not been able to do everything I wanted to do.
“I wish our people could be more understanding, could be more patient but they feel that any time you try to make a change, people resist change even if it’s good for them.
“I wish I had been in politics 20 years ago.’’