In an extraordinary display of intellectual prowess and civic engagement, winners have recently emerged in the Seyi Makinde Essay Competition, an initiative sponsored by the Omituntun Initiative in the Diaspora (OID).
The competition according to the Oyo State government support group was designed to foster skill development, critical thinking, and active participation in governance issues among Nigerian students.
The essay winners include, Oni Alli Atilola, Alonge Razaq Adebayo, and Falade Tijesunimi Eunice, who emerged as the first, second, and third best winners, respectively, will be rewarded with prizes of N200,000, N150,000, and N100,000.
According to the group’s spokesperson, Barrister Ayotomiwa Adebayo, this year’s competition received over 6,000 submissions, many of which were of exceptional quality.
Adebayo also noted that the essay competition, which is aligned with the vision of Governor Seyi Makinde’s administration, seeks to encourage young minds to think creatively, advocate for good governance, and broadening their horizons for leadership skills in their chosen careers.
“With three thought-provoking essay topics to choose from, participants were tasked with exploring and addressing key issues facing Oyo State. The topics are: “Strengthening transparency, inclusiveness, and accountability for a peaceful and sustainable development in Oyo State”,
“Advancing the frontiers of possibilities for a safer, secured, and prosperous Oyo State through citizens’ active participation in governance processes” and “Re-engineering the Oyo State energy system through the newly proposed development and implementation of Oyo State. Master Gas Plan: Expectations, Possibilities, and Benefits,” he added.
The group also congratulated all the participants, especially the winners, for their exceptional work, factual findings, and research.
“They should be proud of their achievements because the quality of entries from contestants is a testament that students are innovative and forward-thinking in proposing solutions to governance issues,” Adebayo alluded.
The group, however, noted that the top 20 winners of the essay competition, including, Ajayi Olabamiji Toyyib, Adeniran Victoria Ayobami, Oluwayemi Mary Adelakun, Jamiu Sodiq Adewale, Adeyemi Oluwatayo Paul, Oyedele Femi Kehinde, Ojediran Opeyemi Abraham, Adegoke Adeseun Oladayo, Adejumo Blessing Theophilus, Adesina Faith Adedamola, Yaqub Abdullahi Eniola, Ogunsola Emmanuel Oladayo, Oni Temidayo Ezekiel, and Ayanyemi Benjamin Gbolahan, Ojo Oluwamuyiwa Julius, Adedapo Aminat Ayokunnumi, and Odeyinka Seyi, respectively, would be privileged to participate in the ICT competent development training and will be presented with a certificate of participation.
Barrister Adebayo affirmed that indeed Governor Makinde’s free qualitative education policy in Oyo State has given students the hope to achieve their dreams and envision themselves becoming future leaders, CEOs, and entrepreneurs through hard work and determination, just as he quoted the governor, “Education remains the best form of poverty alleviation and empowerment that can be given to the youth.”
The group commended Governor Makinde for making education one of the major pillars of the government and laying the right foundations for the free education policy to thrive.
OID also lauded Governor Makinde as the first executive governor in Nigeria to meet the United Nations’ 35 percent policy of women’s inclusion in government and for the appointment of two first females as the commissioners for youth and sports, and health in the pacesetter state.
“It is noteworthy that youths form an integral part of Governor Makinde’s led administration, which made him assign a critical portfolio in his cabinet to a female youth as Commissioner for Youths and Sports.
“All citizens, both at home and in the Diaspora, are enjoined to continue supporting and praying for Governor Makinde, as he is committed to delivering Omituntun 2.0, dubbed ‘sustainable development’, and the electoral mandate to the people of Oyo State,” Adebayo said.