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|Osun 2018: Why Aregbesola Should Hand Over To Me —ezekiel Oyemomi, APC Governors by Akinlab15(m): 7:23pm On Mar 23, 2018|
Osun 2018: Why Aregbesola should hand over to me —Ezekiel Oyemomi, APC governorship aspirant
March 21, 2018
You are a seasoned civil servant, why the interest in politics, after a very long spell in service?
I am happy that you described me as a civil servant. After my retirement from the public service in 2015, I registered as a card-carrying member of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to continue serving the people. But before then, even within the space of time that I was in service, there were a lot of things that I was able to do for my community.
Politics, for me, is a continuation of service to the people. So, I don’t think I am out of line to want to continue serving through politics even when I was a civil servant, all we were doing was delivering the benefits or what you called dividends of democracy to the people. As a civil servant, I served nine administrations, including military and civilian governments. I will say that it is a big different thing serving under a civilian rule as compared to the military government.
Aside from that, I discovered that all my life, I always feel bad when I don’t see things happening the way they should, especially when you see people in need and in lack and we are still living amongst plenty. I have tried one way or the other to help the downtrodden and people who should not be in lack but are in lack. I believe that after my service at the federal level where our first level of interaction would be the state because we don’t go directly to the local government except when we are doing the monitoring of our projects, like Rural Access and Mobility Programme (RAMP) that happens essentially at the federal level, I believe that my interest in politics is a continuation of my service to the people.
You see politics as service to the people, but there is this scepticism among Nigerians that politicians are just there for their selfish ends. How do you hope to address these conflicting realities?
I like that, but realism points it to me that people should be in politics to serve the people who elected them and I will still want to live within that realm of reality. It is true that a lot of people go there and instead of serving the people, they serve themselves. Let me bring in the motto of my school, Wesley College. Jesus Christ was relating with his disciples and they asked him, ‘who is the master?’ He replied, ‘it is he who serves’. So, our motto is ‘Bi eni tin se iranse’ (‘As one who serves’). If you say you are the boss, you are not the boss until you serve because you are brought in to serve the interest of the people.
With what Governor Raufu Aregbesola has done, I can see that I have a lot of space to really satisfy the yearnings of the people and I believe that going in for the position would really help me because, at the Federal Government level, we see what has been happening; we relate with the politicians all along. Don’t forget that as a permanent secretary, I was reporting directly to some of them. Most of the visions they say they have, we bring them to reality by writing for them and we see them through in the execution of programmes, monitoring, evaluating and reviewing them. So, practically you can really say the person who is the chief executive is the civil servant because if we don’t do things correctly there is no way there can be correct delivery. If we don’t monitor, there is no way you can make these objectives to be realized. So, I will still say service, through politics, is a continuum for me.
What informed your choice of APC as the platform to realise your governorship ambition?
Yes, we used to visit one of our revered elder statesmen and during one of times we went to him, he said, ‘look, what are you going to do in retirement’ and one of my uncles whom I went with said it is politics, whereas, I have not discussed anything with him. And the elder statesmen said why not, but he added, ‘I know that you are a gentleman. For you to be a politician you must have ‘skonskon’ and you need to have money. Since it is APC that is ruling in my state, the way to apply yourself to your state is to relate with those people who are there [the people in power]. Go and register with the government of the day’. That was how I became a member of APC. Since then, we hav been relating with the people, at the local level especially.
In the state today, the issue is where the next governor is coming from and coincidentally all eyes seemed to be on your own zone, Osun West. How are you sure that you will emerge the acceptable governorship candidate from there?
Let me say this: You have the Gbagi Market in Ibadan where the line of shops sells the same type of items. Shop A is not going to be afraid of Shop B or Shop C; all you need to do is to make sure that you get your items from sources that are reasonable in prices. You make sure you are selling qualitative materials. You make sure that your shop attendants are very welcoming, warm and attract customers. Those are the things to do because you know you have competitors. All I will do will just be like that.
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Secondly, I know within me that I have had a lot of experiences which I want to use to prosecute whatever I am going to bring in. another thing is that it is not going to be a desperate thing. If, at the end of the day, with all I have got in me that I want to sell to them, the party says, why not? I told you, I want to serve. I will still continue to serve in whatever capacity I find myself.
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The question was borne out of an insinuation that the incumbent governor has an interest in another person from outside the state as his successor. In the light of this, do you see yourself as favourite of the governor?
Yes. The reason is this: I am aware of the likelihood of that grapevine talk, but the truth is that by the time you put all the aspirants there, the first thing is for you to look at all of them to determine who can really deliver and who can uphold and build on the governor’s legacies and make the people better. With all sense of humility, I don’t think a reasonable person will want to drop a person like me and go for go for someone else. That is talking about merit.
There are other possible considerations which we may not know, but which may be known to Mr Governor and some other people. if those things come into play, well, I may not be able to help it and the people may not be able to help it. But I just believe that they will want to do the most reasonable thing to bring in someone who can build up upon what is on ground and they will be proud that yes, they handed over to someone who is going to make things better.
While names are being bandied around as the possible successor, what do you think will give you an edge over the other aspirants, even from the other political parties?
I am a technocrat. Look at the examples of what is happening in Lagos and Gombe states. Look at that gentleman in Anambra State. Today, give it to the technocrats and you will not regret it. Secondly, look at the problems that we have in the state. Being a teacher myself, I will have teachers on my side. Being a technocrat, the current civil servants in the state will see a friend in me. I happen to be a pensioner: the pensioners who have been complaining here and there will say, ‘look, this is one of us. He should be able to do it and make things better for us’. I have worked in places where those experiences will matter in governance.
How do you hope to tackle the huge debt profile of the state, if you become the governor?
I am happy that I am an accountant. You see, the debts were taken to prosecute capital projects that will be productive now and in the future and that means that they had been taken correctly. Whichever of the debts was not taken with the correct duration, like some loans that should have a term of, say, 20 years, but which they took for a term of say, 10 years, we will review such a loan. Some that are near completion in payment and which we know have really given us benefits, we will quickly pay them off. Some that we feel that some of the conditions are not beneficial to us, we will also review them.
Don’t forget that it is not one individual that has taken these loans. Those people that have given us the loans will also be ready to review them all. So, it is not going to be so much of a burden to us in any way. What I am happy is that the loans have been taken and used in the execution of projects that can be seen and can still be used for the benefit of the people.
Who is your godfather?
I say this: I have only one Godfather who is God, the father. Surely, as time goes on, we will relate with people who will hear us and who will be so impressed and take us on. Then, they will be the earthly godfathers because they believe in us.
|Re: Osun 2018: Why Aregbesola Should Hand Over To Me —ezekiel Oyemomi, APC Governors by eleko1: 7:30pm On Mar 23, 2018|
una Don Com with unafake Awolowo cap.
|Re: Osun 2018: Why Aregbesola Should Hand Over To Me —ezekiel Oyemomi, APC Governors by fantasticone1(m): 7:50pm On Mar 23, 2018|
APC has no stay in Osun state... We cant be fooled again
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