‘We Need Responsive Leaders, Representatives With Integrity’
Ernest Ndukwe, the immediate past Executive/Vice Chairman of Nigeria Communications Commission (NCC) and the All Progressives Grand Alliance (APGA) senatorial candidate for Anambra South, spoke to journalists on this month’s elections and other national issues. CHUKS COLLINS was there and reports.
WHAT is Ozioma 2015 all about?
Ozioma 2015 is all about good news to the people and the fact that we want to provide a breath of fresh air, a new approach to the representation of our people in the National Assembly and also making it possible for a new dawn for people of quality and integrity to be able to represent our people.
Basically, I bring good news to our people. I put a new dawn for quality representation.
What motivated you to join politics and the race to the senate?
My motivation for coming out to represent my people is borne out of fact that so far, we have not had a quality representation.
Anambra State is a copiously endowed state in Nigeria, in terms of manpower and human development, but in the recent past, we have had a situation where people are wondering what is happening to our state, to our politicians.
So, the motivation is to see whether we can improve on the quality of representation, by so doing bring development, infrastructure, hope to the citizens and work for a better tomorrow for our people generally and also reputation to the state.
What would be your main focus, if elected?
What I have noticed since I started my campaigns is that there is widespread high level of poverty in our land. I used to think that that Anambra is where people don’t necessarily beg for bread.
But as I went round, there are some places things are not the way they are supposed or expected to be and that has even motivated me the more.
These things are not very difficult things to improve on; we are in a country where oil tends to be the main concentration of everybody. I think that Anambra is in a unique position to take the lead and charge to turn things around in our country, because the people of Anambra are very hard working people.
In those days, we believed that the Igbo man never believes in free money; he works hard for his money. But now, people don’t have freedom to do what they want to do to the best of their ability. People keep struggling for infrastructure.
We don’t have electricity supply, water supply and other basic amenities and we also need massive orientation and re-orientation.
There is also the problem of high-level corruption in our country, which we need to tackle through basic orientation. I hope that if some of us are elected, we will stamp down our feet to ensure that the cankerworm is dealt with by reducing it to the barest minimum.
Unless that happens, Nigeria will keep suffering all manner of setbacks.
We also need to train high-skilled manpower that can compete fairly well in the national and international arena.
Do you have any doubts or fears about the elections?
I personally don’t have big fears; I think this election will go well. Nigeria has a way of solving its problems, no matter how mighty they tend to be. God has always intervened in our affairs and made things possible for us. But that doesn’t mean we should take things for granted and start doing things wrongly.
On the elections, everything depends on how prepared INEC is for this job at hand. Once INEC is fully prepared. Once they have provided proper orientation and put the right people in service, then we could think of a successful election.
I am sure our leaders are aware of the consequences of not having a free and fair election.
My advice first of all to various politicians, like myself, is to remember that in a contest, only one person wins, especially in an election. So, when there are losers, such losers should congratulate the successful ones and the winner must be humble and magnanimous in victory. It should not be a game of desperation, which is what some people are afraid of.
Personally, I am being too optimistic; I am not seeing any reason why we should worry so much. Like my people says, what a strong man knows, the other strong man also know it.
So, I hope we will run an election the way it is done in many other places and that it will all work out well.
Do you think APGA would take the people to the Promised Land?
I think, like we say in APGA, APGA is more of a movement. I am very happy to be part of APGA and what it represents for our people. It is a party that is well organised here in Anambra State.
I must say that I am happy that I am running the flag of APGA, because it is a disciplined and well-organised party and we hope it has a bright future.
APGA, by Gods grace, will win many seats with the crops of people in the party today and new sets of people that have been coming in.
What message do you have for your people and your supporters?
What I am offering my people is quality representation, as we have not been properly represented by quality representatives so far.
Anambra is an APGA state, so it is important that as many positions available should be won.
I am running on the platform of APGA, so that when I go to the senate, there will be a synergy between me and the state government.
What I promise my people is quality representation of what has come from plenty of experience I acquired over the years and also being able to attract development and investments to our region to the benefit of my constituents.
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