Ekiti State Governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, and his wife, Erelu Bisi Fayemi, are to receive the highest honours of the Lions Club International- the Melvis Jones Award- for selfless service to humanity.
The Melvis Jones Award is bestowed on men and women of impeccable character who have lived a life of meritorious public service that have impacted positively on their immediate environment and the society at large.
In a letter from the Eko Lions Club, a branch of the Lions Club International, addressed to the governor, the body noted that it has monitored Fayemi’s performance since he came to power and has discovered that he has boosted the standard of living of the people of Ekiti State.
The letter dated June 9, 2014 which was signed by Projects Director, Eko Lions Club, Oluwadare Abimbola, said Fayemi has not disappointed the people of Ekiti who gave him their mandate to occupy the number one office in the state.
The Lions Club pointed out that Fayemi has acted contrary to the popular saying that “politics is a dirty game” by proving to be a political leader who is civil, amiable, courteous, respectful, yet principled, firm and resolute in his dogged commitment to the oath of office he swore to uphold.
According to the letter, the Executive Council of the Lions Club International decided to bestow the award on Fayemi and his wife because they had emulated the distinguished life of service lived by Melvis Jones after whom the award is named.
The body said the various landmark projects and people-oriented policies executed by Fayemi has made life easier for Ekiti people and bettered their living standard.
Among such policies, according to the Lions Club, are the free health programme for the vulnerable segment of the population such as children under five years, pregnant women, the physically-challenged and the elderly.
The organisation noted that the Fayemi administration’s social security scheme for the aged in which 25,000 indigent citizens who are 65 years and above receive N5,000 monthly is first of its kind in Nigeria.
It said: “Your record of achievements in many fields, despite the fact that Ekiti receives second to the least funds from the Federation Account, recommend you as a prudent manager of resources as well as someone driven by the passion to leave your society better than you had met it.
“Of particular interest to us as a public spirited organisation committed to the uplifting of the helpless and downtrodden segment of the society is your heart of gold from which flows the milk of human kindness, like the ageless, never ceasing Arinta Waterfalls and the Ikogosi Warm Springs, both if which, incidentally, are in your domain”.
The Lions Club posited that Mrs. Fayemi has complemented her husband’s developmental efforts through the activities of her non-governmental organization, the Ekiti Development Foundation (EDF).
It stressed that the EDF’s provision of cash grants to women organizations, donations to children’s homes, presentation of school bags and other instructional materials to pupils and presentation of food items to beneficiaries of Ekiti Food Bank have reduced poverty, just as her support for women and the girl child have improved the lots of women in the state.
The date for the couple’s investiture would be announced soon.