Engineer Abubakar Ohere has grown to be an asset to the Governor Yahaya Bello administration and will remain an indefatigable factor in Kogi state’s political firmament. Credit must go to this great Kogite who is a successful self made man but joined forces with our young and able governor to create the enabling environment and policies that make Kogi state to be what it is today. Today also he is regarded as one of those who assisted our governor in making Kogi state a reference point of accelerated development in the North-central, courtesy of the foundation layed by this administration.
Like an engineer which he is by profession, Ohere is a thorough bred democrat and an astute political engineer that has cut a niche for himself in being part of the Yahaya Bello’s success story. Ohere’s popularity, resilience, political sagacity and ingenuity played a major role in the success of the APC and Governor Yahaya Bello’s re-election victory in the just concluded guber election in Kogi state. His democratic credentials are great as today he is praised as one of the major actors responsible in deepening democracy in Kogi state.
No wonder, he is regarded by many as a destiny changer, a philantropist to the core par excellence and father of the fatherless. As a philantropist, he has made many impacts in the lives of many Kogites and this has translated to the political capital at his disposal that he made readily available to the APC as a loyal party man that has contributed immensely to the triumph of the party at elections.
Ohere was appointed as the special adviser to the governor on local government and chieftaincy affairs in his first term in government by Governor Yahaya Bello to help create policies that will make the people of the grassroots of the state feel the impact of development and good governance, a task which he discharged creditably and in the process developed a master plan and cardinal policies which if implemented will lay the foundation for the growth and developments of the local government system in Kogi state.
Our able governor satisfied with the performance of Ohere as special adviser elevated him to be the state commissioner for local government and chieftaincy affairs to implement the policies he himself helped to formulate.
This task also he discharged to the satisfaction of the people at the grassroots that ensured the massive votes given to the governor from majority of the local government areas. It is instructive to note that the massive votes for the governor from the local governments in Kogi state is like a referendum on Ohere’s performances as commissioner in charge of the local governments.
It is generally accepted that his tenure as commissioner was a successful one. He created effective implementation departments and agencies through the creation of special technocratic enclaves as well as managerial strategies that reward good performances by staff and promoting a sense of professional mission.
He was successful as the commissioner for local governments because he made sure that technocratic ambitions can and must often balance patronage demands.
He made sure that governance transformation in the local areas in Kogi state was driven by a technocratic vision of a modern town but relies on creative policy proposals that also serve multiple political interests.
Increased resources and management changes by his policies in the local government councils improved substantially beureaucratic performances that have made our LGs work again, thanks to him.
His good governance performances assured the people at the grassroots that the Yahaya Bello administration means well for them and it increased public trust of and buy-in on the critical reforms the Bello administration seeks to implement that even involves the swallowing of bitter pills by the people. Ohere achieved this by systematically introducing the social contract with tax paying citizens and the government providing infrastructure and services.
He made sure that as commissioner for local government, the political head of the local councils in Kogi state have political relationship with the informal sector’s associations. These ties helped greatly in increasing and enabling reforms effort of the government.
Hajiya Ibrahim, Director-General, Kogi Concerned Citizens, writes from Abuja vis 08032628935