‘Ikale people deserve quality representation’
Mike Adeniyi Negwo-Omogbehin is the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) candidate vying for the Irele/Okitipupa seat at the lower chamber of the National Assembly. In this interview with NIYI BELLO, he disclosed his plans for the constituency. Excerpts:
Motivation to join the race
THERE have been a lot of people in the frontline of politics in my area starting from the days of Chief Olu Akinfosile who had represented us at the House of Representatives. These people have done their best; they have tried and given their best.
What prompted me into this race is that there are some gaps that I believe should be filled. I have been in this game for quite a while and my choice of political party, PDP, is because of its acceptability nationwide and what it represents as the unifying factor in our country. Since 2003, the PDP has been the domineering party in this state particularly in my constituency and this has been a plus for this ambition.
My campaign has been very smooth but sometime tough particularly because of the challenges in the rural area. My acceptability has been wonderful and my people have been buying into my tripod agenda of Education, Rural Health and touching the constituency and the constituent. I have been very pleased and I have done the tour of the 23 wards and the reception has been very wonderful.
Every politician, like a product is presented to the buyers and it is the quality of the product and the packaging of the product that would determine the success of the sales. I have presented myself to the people. I believe my knowledge in the political environment of Ondo state will surely give me an edge because I have a better knowledge of Ondo state and I am not an imported politician from Lagos like the other candidates.
The challenge of the APC and Ondo PDP crisis
Life without challenges and competition is not worth living; the essence of life is having people who can put us on our toes. The APC are doing their best in their own little way and like I told you earlier I have also been on the field soliciting for votes from people and it is left for the electorate to decide between me as the candidate of PDP and the candidates of other political parties but I am sure that at the end of the day, my people are intelligent enough to decide among the candidates and make a right choice. Fortunately enough for me, the crisis within the PDP is over. It has been resolved. What actually happened was a quarrel between brothers within the house.
We have had enough of our quarrels and we have settled the differences. We now have a unified home where we are jointly confronting the opposition. I want you to also realize that every good thing in life deserves struggle and what happens within our party was a family struggle for good representation.
Plans for the constituency
Primarily, my assignment in the House of Representatives would be that of law making but in addition to law making I have presented to my good people a tripod agenda that I mentioned earlier. One of them is focused on education, which would be attained by providing quality education for the youths of the area. During my tours, I visited some of the schools and what I saw was not pleasing.
The libraries are in sorry state and I intend to take a very good look at that sector to provide updated books that complied with syllabus so as to improve the education background of our younger ones and prepare them for the challenges ahead. While I am not promising to give total scholarship to students we shall take a look at some brilliant and intelligent students within our 23 wards with the aim of giving them some bursary and grants.
Rural healthcare is also paramount in my mind and it will be given priority. We shall collaborate with the Ministry of Health and international Heath Organisations in providing good healthcare to the people in the rural areas within the constituency.
The third leg on my tripod agenda is developing the constituency and the constituents. Overtime I have listened to complains by my constituents about the implementation of community projects.
In all honesty I have seen some constituency projects delivered by the incumbent lawmaker but I think what needed to be done is make the process more transparent so that the people will decide what to be done for them. This will not only cover the choice of projects but where they wanted it to be sited and even the choice of contractors.
My constituency consist of men, women and young ones and my duty is to represent them effectively at the National Assembly and to be the their chief lobbyist. I also intend to look out for job opportunities and other opportunities of life for our young ones. I intend to touch the lives of women as home-builders by providing micro credit for them and not by doling out money to them. We will also provide enabling environment like guaranteeing those who have enterprise that needed to be pursued but do not have money.
The advantage of LP and PDP fusing together to work for Jonathan
All over the world every synergy if properly coordinated, actually increase output and therefore I see the coming together of the Labour Party and the PDP as the best for our politics. We were actually members of the same family before that little quarrel threatened our unity. The coming together of the two parties will greatly enhance the victory of our party. We just need to bring all the resources together particularly human resources, to enhance the numbers of votes we will have at the end of the day. Ondo State governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko is the Southwest coordinator of the Jonathan presidential campaign and he has been doing all to ensure the victory of the president in Ondo and the rest of the Southwest. I am sure he knows he cannot abandon his state for the regional assignment. He is capable of delivering the southwest states for Mr. President. He has promised to deliver over a million votes for the president in the state. This we can achieve and this we will surely do.
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