Kogi state was created in 1991 from parts of
Kwara and Benue states.
The state comprises three major ethnic groups and languages: Igala, Ebira, and Okun with other such as Bassa-Nge, a people of Nupe extraction in Lokoja and Bassa Local Government Area, Bassa-Komo of Bassa Local Government Area, Gwari, Oworo, Kakanda, Magongo, Idoma, Ogori and the pure Nupe people of Eggan community under Lokoja Local Government.
Kogi state has twenty-one (21) local government areas. They are: Adavi, Ajaokuta, Ankpa, Bassa, Dekina, Ibaji, Idah, Igalamela-Odolu, Ijumu
Kabba/Bunu, Koton Karfe, Lokoja, Mopa-Muro, Ofu, Ogori/Magongo, Okehi, Okene
Olamaboro, Omala, Yagba East and Yagba West.
It connects the Federal Capital Territory with 22 Southern states.
Agriculture is the main source of economy of the Kogi people. There are many farm produce from the state notably coffee, cocoa, palm oil, cashew, maize, groundnuts, melon, cassava, yam and rice.
Mineral resources present in Kogi state include coal, iron, limestone, petroleum and tin. The state is home to the largest iron and steel industry in Nigeria known as Ajaokuta Steel Company Limited and one of the largest cement factory in Africa, the Obajana Cement Factory.
Since the creation of Kogi state in 1991, it has been ruled by administrators and governors. However, a look would be taken into the elected governors.
Abubakar Audu (Governor 1999-2003)
Prince Abubakar Audu was twice the Governor of Kogi State. He died shortly after the announcement of the election results on 22 November 2015, while seeking to be re-elected as governor under the All Progressives Congress (APC).
Some of his major achievements during his brief first term of office include the establishment of three different housing schemes for public officers consisting of over 1,500 housing units in Lokoja; the transformation of Lokoja township with asphalt roads, street lights, and aesthetic roundabouts, the construction of inter-township and rural roads, over 75 electrification schemes and 50 water projects.
Prince Abubakar Audu saw to the establishment of Kogi State Polytechnic , the establishment of a television station, radio station, a state newspaper and the transformation of the
colonial residence of Lord Lugard into an ultra modern government house complex, the construction of office blocks for ministries as the new state had no office accommodation, the construction of shopping arcade complex to enhance commercial activities, among others.
He also pioneered the construction of the first ultra modern state liaison office in Abuja. His administration also built an ultra modern stadium and a five star hotel in Lokoja, the Confluence Beach Hotel.
Also, during his tenure, Audu saw to the establishment of Kogi State University, Anyigba.
Audu masterminded several land-striking projects within four years.
Ibrahim Idris took over the baton of the leadership of Kogi state from Abubakar Audu in 2003.
As governor for two terms, he prioritize payment of workers’ salaries. Idris was successful in clearing three months’ salary arrears which he inherited and never owed a single salary for civil servants at both state and local government levels.
Well-equipped and well-stocked hospitals and clinics were constructed during his reign. His contribution in health was the establishment of the 400-bed-capacity Specialist Hospital and Referral Centre in Lokoja, the state capital.
In education, about 2,000 primary school blocks of Four classrooms and offices each were built across the state. Every village or Ward in the state could boast of at least one block of the signature schools.
After achieving full accreditation for all its 29 academic programmes in 29 months, Kogi State University, Anyigba became the best state owned university in the country during Idris tenure.
Other notable achievements were the International Market, Confluence Stadium, State Secretariat Phase II and the 50million liters capacity Greater Lokoja Water Sheme.
(Acting Governor 6 February 2008 – 29 March 2008)
Clarence Olufemi became the acting governor of Kogi state on 6th February, 2008, following the nullification of the election that brought in Ibrahim Idris.
Olafemi handed over power to Ibrahim Idris on 29th March, 2008.
(Governor 2012 – 2016)
Captain Idris Wada became governor of Kogi state after the expiration of the tenure of Ibrahim Idris in 2012.
Agriculture thrived during the tenure of Idris Wada. During this period, Kogi became the largest Cassava growing state in Nigeria.
Alhaji Yahaya Adoza Bello (Governor 2016 till date)
Yahaya Adoza Bello is the incumbent governor of Kogi state. He is the youngest governor in the history of the state and he’s also said to be the youngest governor in Nigeria.
Yahaya Bello became the governor of Kogi state in 2016, following the death of Abubakar Audu.
In the course of his 2019 campaign, Yahaya Bello attributed 100 achievements to himself, contrary to the complaints raised by the masses, tagging his administration the most useless.
Some achievements, as listed by Governor Yahaya Bello are: reduction of ghost worker, freedom of expression in the state, provision of 200 utility vehicles for security operations amongst other.
Since the inception of his tenure, workers in the state are owned many months salary.
Yahaya Bello has also been declared winner of the 2019 gubernatorial election held in the state, giving him the mandate for another four years.
DPH NEWS REWIND