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The road to victory begins…
Olowo who said irrespective of the names being bandied around, mostly around, he stands a better chance of leading the party to victory in the state.
In spite of your robust professional background, why do you choose to go into the murky waters of politics?
I don’t think it is proper to refer to politics as having any murky waters. From time immemorial, politics has been the wireless of human existence. The political room is the room wherein every important decision that affects the wellbeing of any society is taken. Be that as it may, I believe it is only proper, particularly at this point in time, for me to bring to bear, my professional acumen as a professional accountant, industrial relations expert, Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Taxation, and a veritable legal practitioner, in joining hands together with other well-meaning Ekiti indigenes to properly reposition Ekiti State in a manner in which governance would positively impact on the citizenry.
What is your vision for Ekiti?
To restore Ekiti State to her dignified status of the fountain of knowledge wherein the citizenry, both the youths and the elderly, will collectively, honestly, humbly and decorously are partakers in the governance of the state, towards the ultimate development and advancement of the state.
What is your verdict on the Ayo Fayose-led administration?
A kleptomaniac regime, perpetually covering up its failure to deliver the dividends of democracy to the people by merely sloganeering and reducing governance to roadside shows, all in the name of playing opposition to the government at the centre, the out-going governor has thrown all decorum to the winds in a manner antithetical to the highly cultured norm of an average Ekiti man or woman.
How do you intend to make a difference from the status quo?
While identifying with the people, governance will not be trivialised. The wellbeing of the citizenry would be duly prioritised. Our major focus would be on revitalising agriculture in the most modern form; to address employment requirements of the people. In the course of providing the vital needed infrastructure, pains would not be unnecessarily inflicted on the people unlike what the outgoing governor is doing in his fake urbanisation project in which peoples’ ancestral homes and antiquities are destroyed without recourse to decency. We will not build flyovers where there are no rivers and or traffic jam. We will not for any moment, play to the gallery or placate the people for any primordial undertone.
There are about 34 aspirants on the platform of your party. Do you think you stand a chance of securing the party’s ticket when personalities like Segun Oni, Kayode Fayemi and Babafemi Ojudu who are within the corridors of power are involved?
I stand a better chance. It would be naïve for anyone to think that Ekiti 2018 gubernatorial race, particularly in the APC, would be about a name that had all the while been in the public domain. The big question about those names you mentioned is: when they had the opportunity or in the political positions they have held and still holding, what lasting impact have they made? I am sure the people do not wish to be taken for a bigger ride once again. Ekiti people are desirous of a fresh pragmatic leadership that would truthfully lead the people through the tick and thins of the political equilibrium and not a pretender-to-the-throne who would thereafter play the lord over them.
What leverage do you have over the other aspirants?
My major leverage is that I am a home-grown-boy who understands and radiates the true Ekiti values, dispositions and valour. I do not fall into the category of some of the aspirants; including some of the big names you alluded to who could not communicate with homogenous Ekiti society in the native slangs. While some of the aspirants are banking on their deep pockets, I am resolute on the deepening strata and the efficacy of the programmes being packaged to take Ekiti to an Eldorado of governance, basically focused on service delivery to the people as opposed to personal aggrandizement and illicit acquisition. The delegates in the forthcoming party primaries, I believe, would look out for the candidate with a lasting socio-political, infrastructural development gains as opposed to immediate cash and or stomach infrastructure, with which the outgoing guy hoodwinked them in the recent past.
The agitation by the Southern Senatorial District where you come from for power shift, according to some persons, is not in the constitution of the APC. What is your view on that?
While I am not basically predicating my candidature on the agitation for southern agenda, I only think the agitation is genuine whether it is in the APC constitution or not. It is just like the gentleman rotational agreement for the presidency between the northern and southern part of Nigeria. For there to be peace, egalitarianism and justice must be put at the front burner. Without leverage on the southern agenda agitation, I strongly believe that I stand a chance to beat the other aspirants. Even the southern agenda agitation has its own limitation: there are ample numbers of aspirants from the south senatorial district which make it more herculean for aspirants from the zone.
Are you mindful of the fact that the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) is equally likely to pick its governorship candidate from the same southern senatorial district?
Of course, yes! That is not a big challenge. The sitting deputy governor that the out-going governor is rooting for is far too low to be my match even in Ikere Ekiti where we both come from.
There are noticeable divisions within your party. What is your view about this?
Maybe I am not well informed. I am not aware of noticeable divisions in the ranks of top players of APC.
Background checks indicate that you have a cosy relationship with the current governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai. There are also insinuations that you are riding on his back. What is your take on this?
Mallam Nasir el-Rufai, the governor of Kaduna State, since 18 years ago, when our path crossed in the Bureau of Public Enterprises, has been my boss, my friend and my brother. Since he is not from Ekiti State, your assertion about my riding on his back remains suspect. Be that as it may, Mallam Nasir Ahmad el-Rufai remains an altruistic leader any pragmatic minded Nigerian would cherish. Apart from Mallam el-Rufai, I have, in the course of my law practice, had close-knitted interactions with some top members of our great party. They all appreciate and remain supportive of my courage to dabble into the political arena.
Culled from the Sun newspaper