By Tunde Oguntola, Abuja
A report on the impact of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo on governance at state and national levels will be unveiled today in Abuja.
Ahead of the event, a report released by the organisers, IdentifytheRightLeader (ITRL), said throughout his public service life, whether as a lecturer, attorney-general, vice president, or acting president, Osinbajo has demonstrated uncommon virtues, morals, and dedication to the Nigerian State.
It said Osinbajo has sought to identify current and impending problems in society and propose solutions to them by way of public policies.
ITRL in the Impact Assessment Report of Programmes Championed by Prof. Yemi Osinbajo titled: “The Unveiling: Osinbajo, If Empowered” as part of efforts to contribute its quota to salvage the nation’s common heritage, said to make Nigeria great again, leadership is key in solving the Nigerian problem
IdentifytheRightLeader is a political cum civic organisation that is geared towards examining various front-runners in Nigeria’s political space with the sole aim of identifying their impacts in both private and public undertakings .
The report stressed that in spite of having to navigate through the labyrinth of politics and government, Osinbajo has always made the impact of his proposed policies his focal point.
It said rather than stay in the trenches and throw blame, the group opted to assist Nigerians in deciding on quality leaders by illuminating their achievements and impact while in public service (if they were).
The group said of all the names that have been tipped as potential presidential aspirants, Osinbajo based on the impact of his actions in government has most affected the common man positively, hence, the group chose to conduct her first impact report on him.
The report reads in part: “The tales of godfatherism, personal ambitions, greed, ‘who’s turn is next’, and similar vices have been some of the biggest roadblocks to Nigeria’s socio-economic and political development since Independence.
“Unfortunately, these have always been at the detriment of a nation with a population of over 200 million people – most of whom strive daily to make ends meet. If Nigerians must start to reap the benefit of democracy, they must pay utmost attention to who they select as leaders and why.
“The ITRL report is divided into several sections, first, the introductory section. Second, Osinbajo’s impact as Attorney-General, as Vice-President and Acting President. Comments about Osinbajo from leaders, opposition leaders, famous quotes from Osinbajo and Osinbajo through the lens of some notable young Nigerians. The next section examines some of Osinbajo’s policies and analyses the impacts. Finally, the report ends with a conclusion and recommendations.”
It said as Attorney-General of Lagos State (1999 – 2007), Osinbajo was credited with undertaking far-reaching judicial reforms in the state covering areas including judges’ recruitment, remuneration, training, and discipline.
It noted that these reforms still have profound impacts which include: reducing man-hours and the average time for the dispensation of justice, improved access to justice for the masses, restoring people’s confidence and belief in the judiciary, and more importantly, reducing instances of corruption and inefficiency in the Lagos judiciary.
During this time, the report said Osinbajo took the federal government to court 12 times, including to the Supreme Court, on matters of States’ rights, federalism, and restructuring.
One of such instances, according to the report was when Osinbajo approached the Supreme Court over the illegal and unconstitutional withholding of funds belonging to the Lagos State Government in 2002.
As vice president, it said Osinbajo’s impacts were felt in the Niger Delta region.
“Most Nigerians recall that before 2016, insecurity in the oil-rich Niger-Delta region reached unprecedented dimensions leading to a significant reduction of the nation’s oil production in the span of just three months.
“This report also captures how Osinbajo was able to solve seemingly complicated and endless bloodletting in the Niger Delta effortlessly through his ability to communicate clearly and solve problems.
“Osinbajo, in 2017, designed the Niger-Delta New Vision (NDNV) which brought about productive partnerships between oil-producing communities, the government, and oil companies.
“In a region that accounts for over 80 per cent of Nigeria’s resources, achieving stability in the Niger-Delta had serious economic advantages for the nation’s revenues. Having a message and knowing when and how to pass it can prove decisive in bringing about peace and development.”
As acting president, the report maintained that Osinbajo authorized a comprehensive construction of the insurgency-affected North-East in 2017.
During that time, the report said policy analysts started calling for changes in the nation’s counter-insurgency measures.
“Some of the policy recommendations include development programmes. This was after the military option had shown little results.”
As part of reconstruction efforts in the North East, it said Osinbajo established the North East Children’s Trust (NECT) to provide educational and extensive-care support to thousands of children orphaned by the Boko Haram insurgency in the region in 2017.
Also, it said as acting president, Osinbajo’s order to the Chief of Army Staff and Chief of Air Staff to relocate to Maiduguri increased and sustained the tempo of the Army in its fight against insurgency in 2017.
“This increased tempo on the part of the Nigerian military provided psychological boosts for officers in the field and their morale to fight the dreaded insurgents,” it said.
Furthermore, the report said Osinbajo has done so much with so little executive power, adding that one cannot but wonder what he will do with the full executive power that the Office of the President would avail him.
In the report, it said efforts were made to provide insights into the impacts of some of his policies during his time in government, first as Attorney General of Lagos State, then as Vice President and Acting President.
It continued: “The report by ITRL points out that Professor Yemi Osinbajo performed more as Attorney-General and Acting President but did more advocacy as Vice-President, owing to the constitutional restraints surrounding the office.
“It was identified that Prof. Osinbajo has a strong work ethic with unblemished integrity and character. Also, Osinbajo is youthful at heart and youth centered.
“The report shows that Osinbajo is committed to making in Nigeria goods and services.
“It was identified that Osinbajo is a pan-Nigerian, cosmopolitan leader with high emotional intelligence. He is a great orator and a peacebuilder.
“All these and more are the reasons Osinbajo is tipped above all other candidates who are rumoured to be interested in the office of the President of Nigeria.”
The ITRL noted that it has invested enormous time and resources in putting this report together, adding that it will leave Nigerians to make up their minds on who should steer the ship of state forward.