People in their thousands including civil servants, traditional rulers and others in Osun gathered at the car lot of the office of the Governor in Osogbo to offer inter-religious service for the new year 2016.
Prayers were offered by both Islamic and Christian clerics to thank Almighty God for His mercy, protection over the people of the State, the nation and the renewal of God’s presence in the state for open doors of economic prosperity and investment opportunities for the state.
The Governor of Osun, Ogbeni Aregbesola in his remarks noted that despite all the challenges of 2015, God still saved the country by bringing in a government that will change Nigeria.
He also called on Muslim clerics in Nigeria to pray against war between Iran and Saudi Arabia, stating that such war may increase international oil price but the adverse effect will be felt mostly by Muslims.
Aregbesola held that God has been so faithful to Osun and that the state will soon bounce back as the state has been able to identify sixty million Cocoa trees presently in Osun.
He added if well nurtured by farmers in the state, about forty billion Naira will be realised by farmers in the state.
The Governor stated that with the new Cocoa development in the state, new cash money will be introduced to the state thus making the economy of the state prosperous in 2016.
He said, “I want us to all look inward for prosperity of the state because what we have all depended on has been blocked. God has now opened another way for us in agriculture, I have called on government workers on Agriculture to chat a new course.
“We should now tell every Cocoa farmer not to sell their Cocoa outside Osun as government has made necessary steps to make the proceeds to remain in the state.
“Everything that is needed will be provided by government, government is ready to supply seedlings and crops, we are also talking with Lagos state on how produce from Osun can be Sold there”. The Governor stated.
On the allegation of his not being prudent, Aregbesola pointed out that with the present Federal allocation, Osun without loan re-payment will at best according to November allocation got 1.7billion Naira, which can not meet the obligation of the state.
According to him, “despite not having anything from the November allocation, we have been able to pay November salary. We optimistic that things will be far better this year”.
Earlier in his sermon, Chairman Christian Association of Nigeria, Osun, Rev. (Dr.) Elisha Ogundiya noted that contrary to wide spread opinion that oil is Nigeria’s problem, attributed the economic problems to Nigerians.
The Clergy stated that with the recent call for Agriculture and diversification of the economy from oil, if attitude of leaders and citizens does not change the faith that befell oil will still shrink whatever diversification.
He averred that a nation like Nigeria must face her present situation, but must see opportunities in such situation by turning to God and seek for forgiveness, then the country will rise again.
“So many people have been saying oil is the problem and that we need to diversify our economy like going back to Agriculture. In as much as I support agriculture, I believe that we are our own problem and we are definitely the solution. It is high time that we added value to what we have”.
“If we must turn to agriculture, what are the plans towards it. We need to change our attitude, government must be seen to be supportive of Agriculture and other ways of diversification for the country to survive the present situation”. CAN Chairman told the gathering.
Also the Head of Department, Islamic and Arabic studies, University of Ibadan, Dr. Afiz Oladosu called on the people to continually pray for the state for it to progress.
He said the state will become whatever citizens and residents prays for, saying the present situation of the state calls for prayers, hence the need to rechannel the fortune of the state for good.
The Islamic cleric speaking on the purpose of life and human existence said there is the need for every soul to always keeps abreast of the unforeseen occurrence of last day in whatever they do.
He said, “it is lamentable that the fear of God has been found wanting in our society and this has led to immorality among the general public especially among those people at the helms of affairs.
“We human beings have forgotten that we come from God and whatever we do on earth shall be accounted for on the day of judgment, and for this reason, we do whatever we like even at the expense and detriment of others, this shall be accounted for to Almighty Allah.
“There is need for those people at the corridors of power to always put God first and seek His face in whatever they do for the betterment and upliftment of their immediate society and the country at large”. He emphasised.
The occasion had in attendance, the First Lady, Alhaja Sherifat Aregbesola, Deputy Governor, Mrs. Titi Laoye Tomori, Speaker, State of Osun House of Assembly, Honourable Najeem Salam, Chief Judge of Osun State, Justice Adepele Ojo, Secretary to the State Government, Alhaji Moshood Adeoti, Head of Service, Mr. Sunday Owoeye, Permanent Secretaries, Heads of Parastatals and Agencies of government.
Others are Chairman All Progressives Congress (APC) Osun Chapter, Prince Gboyega Famodun, APC State Women Leader, Alhaja Kudirat Fakokunde, APC Chieftains, Labour Leaders, Religious leaders, Traditional rulers, Party Leaders, Market Women amongst others.