“They should vote someone that has the capacity and is very accessible not someone who hides under the banner of a Senate because he has something to hide.”
Aderonke Bello, Abuja
Senator Nkechi Nwaogu represented the Abia Central Senatorial District in the upper legislative chamber between 2007 and 2014 under the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP).
She later dumped the PDP for the All Progressives Congress (APC). In this interview, she revealed her plans for the senatorial district, pointing out that former Governor Theodore Orji who is currently representing the senatorial zone has not performed to the expectations of the constituents.
Senator Nwaogu, therefore, said that the APC would win the Abia Central District elections in 2019.
Do you think that your party, the APC is well positioned to take over Abia State from the PDP?
The APC has been properly positioned to take over Abia State come 2019. I can comfortably say this because of the crop of men and women who are in the APC in Abia State. Secondly, Abians are waiting for a change, since 1999 Abia has been under bondage of the PDP and everybody knows that Abia needs a change and the change can only come from a party that is designed to bring the change, and that is the APC. With the calibre of people that emerged in the just concluded primaries I can assure you that we have been positioned to take over and Abians are willing to help us take over because it takes two to tangle and it will bring the much needed development Abia needs. People are suffering, the economy is stagnant, so, people are hoping that APC would bring the desired change. The PDP has been in government for over 17 years and we have not seen a single project from them, challenge any PDP member to mention any federally introduced project in Abia State.
But you were a PDP senator, are you saying you did not do anything?
I stand tall today and confirm that I, as a legislator, attracted a lot of projects that are there for people to see, but they are tiny projects from just one person, I am talking of the Federal Government under the government of PDP, I challenge them to mention one project they have done in Abia State, I am not talking about the health centres or boreholes that I and other legislators attracted, they are mini-programmes and constituency projects from federal legislators. We have been having a fight with the Federal Government to allow us have our constituency projects, because the Federal Government will not know that we need a health centre in my village, it’s the representatives that will attract that. Mega projects like federal roads, functioning health centres and basic amenities were never provided. It’s just now under this government that dividends of democracy are seen in many states and it’s just in three years – this government has recorded so much democratic dividends, give them another five years to make eight years and I am sure Nigerians will be glad that they have somebody like President Buhari. He doesn’t believe in property acquisition, he
believes in giving to the people he is leading. Some people are complaining because they are not allowed to cart away billions of naira. I am saying that Abians in particular are suffering; it is this very crop of men and women that have just been recently elected to fly the flag of the APC that would sweep away with our broom the dirt and stagnation that are in Abia State and we are coming through Abia Central Senatorial District to do restoration and give Abians economic freedom.
With the recent Federal Government projects like PPP and Trader Moni etc, how do you think it would trickle down to give Abia APC an edge in the forthcoming elections, talking about consolidation?
Definitely, it would trickle down; people are seeing these new projects of the Federal Government, it falls on us, the candidates and the people of APC to inform Abians that the new projects, for instance, the power project in Ariaria and the roads that are being done, especially in Abia North by NDDC, we will inform Abians that these are projects of the Federal Government and not state so they will know that it is just an evidence of better things to come.
Why did you decamp from PDP to APC?
I decamped from PDP about three and a half years ago because they lost focus and vision, when salt ceases to be salt, it can no longer be salt and for someone like me and many more that left them, we left because they derailed and they are still derailing.
…But people are moving from APC back to PDP?
For me, I left because they lost focus and became animalistic, they played God, they had peculiarly consideration that I knew was not sustainable politically that is why I left and I was vindicated. People who are going there are going there to see if they can continue the evil they do. I left because I felt that they were no longer the democratic philosophy for which I saw and joined. They lost that and they are still losing that. Anybody joining them is definitely for personal interest. I am a people’s person, anything I do politically must bring dividend and added value to my people.
READ ALSO: Personal interest, killing APC –Lawmaker
Do you think APC will deliver you in 2019?
100 percent, I have no doubts.
Is Senator T.A Orji a threat to you?
Absolutely not, I can’t wait for the day of the elections, it will be determined by the good people of Abia Central Senatorial District who have been under bondage of democratic dividend since he took over, who have been under lack of accessibility and quality representation that is what I am offering my people.
What can you say about T.A Orji’s representation?
I do not like to mention names, he is not the only one contesting for the position, his government is colourless, he has not done well, that is why the people are yearning for me to come back, because they know what they have lost over this period. As I said earlier, I don’t believe in mentioning names after all I will not be the one to vote myself in, it is the people, and the signs are there that they want me back and, by the grace of God and the support of the people we will flush him out.
What are your plans?
I believe in giving my people a representation that is accessible, and ensuring that my people do not lose out in the national distribution of dividends, when these things are lacking, the electorate will suffer. Every senatorial district should take home accessibility, quality representation, dividends of democracy and many more. I hope to continue from where I stopped, improve on what I did before; I hope to bring to my people an atmosphere of sense of belonging because that is what I am known for. I have never been known as somebody who will go to a place where the national dividend is shared and would shy away. Nigeria is a complex nation and if people are not carved out for certain positions and you put them in those positions, they will not perform. My people know I am capable that is why they are sending me back, I have been tested and trusted.
What plans do you have for the women and girls of Abia State?
I am a constituent of women’s empowerment, I know federal and state government have policies, but the levels of implementation to getting women to be involved in things is very weak. We will start with programmes that are easily achievable to the ones where you would do comparative analysis.
I will collaborate with NGOs that we have in Abia State and ensure we establish income generating activities. I am not saying we are coming to dash women money; dashing money to anyone is not sustainable. We would have programmes where women can learn fresh skills and vocation. Luckily, I am a finance person, there are so many programmes that enable people to have easy access to funding, and we would provide funds to these women that will enable them actualize the training they have acquired. They will gradually become independent and no one will prey them. Not only for the women even the males too, because an idle mind is the devil’s workshop, if we can provide realizable skills for our youths, there will be a drop in crime rates. The important part is funding for these people to go into the skills they have acquired because it is the only way to have financial independent, nobody can play politics effectively without money.
What do you have to say about the issues in the APC?
Well, in my personal opinion, it is quite unfortunate, but that also shows that the party has grown, years ago people were begged to take APC’s ticket, but today you have to struggle and work for the ticket, and if you win like I have, you would know that people have truly chosen you to be their flag bearer, in every contest there would always be a loser and a winner, some people could be termed as bad losers and it is very unfortunate, I do pray that my party would have a mechanism for reconciliation so people won’t drag it and in- jure the name of the party. People will always feel unhappy when they lose; you just have to find a way to reconcile with it.
What are your parting words to the people of Abia Central Senatorial District?
As always I have their interest at heart, I am telling them now that I have won my primaries I am asking the good people of Abia Central Senatorial District, the APC people and non-APC people, to come together and put party aside and elect a good candidate that will provide you everything a senator should give to you, they should vote someone that has the capacity and is very accessible not someone who hides under the banner of a Senate because he has something to hide. I also want to thank the Abia Central APC for making me their flag bearer and I am assuring them and all the other people in Abia Central Senatorial District that if I am elected I would return the lost glory.
The post My constituents want me back to Senate because T.A Orji has failed – Senator Nkechi Nwaogu appeared first on The Sun Nigeria.
Killing of Christians: Buhari lied to Trump – CAN fumes
The Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) has reacted to President Muhammadu Buhari’s revelation of his conversation with United States President, Donald Trump, on the massacre of Christians in Nigeria, saying President Buhari was economical with the truth.
President Buhari had on Tuesday, revealed that at the heat of the bloody clashes between herdsmen and farmers in Nigeria, the United States President, Donald Trump, unequivocally accused him of killing Christians.
Buhari said these in his closing remarks at the two-day ministerial performance review retreat held at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Tuesday.
At a point, the President digressed from his prepared speech and narrated his encounter with Trump on the bloody clashes.
He said he managed to explain to the American leader that the clashes were not about ethnicity or religion.
He said, “I believe I was about the only African among the less developed countries the President of United States invited.
“When I was in his office, only myself and himself, only God is my witness, he looked at me in the face, and asked, ‘Why are you killing Christians?’
“I wonder, if you were the person, how you will react. I hope what I was feeling inside did not betray my emotion, so I told him that the problem between the cattle rearers and farmers, I know is older than me not to talk of him. I think I am a couple of years older than him.
“With climate change and population growth and the culture of the cattle rearers, if you have 50 cows and they eat grass, any root, to your water point, then they will follow it. It doesn’t matter whose farm it is.
“The First Republic set of leadership was the most responsible leadership we ever had. I asked the Minister of Agriculture to get a gazette of the early 60s which delineated the cattle route where they used meager resources then to put earth dams, wind mills even sanitary department.
“So, any cattle rearers that allowed his cattle to go to somebody’s farm would be arrested, taken before the court. The farmer would be called to submit his bill and if he couldn’t pay, the cattle would be sold, but subsequent leaders, the VVIPs (very important persons) encroached on the cattle routes. They took over the cattle rearing areas.
“So, I tried and explained to him (Trump) that this has got nothing to do with ethnicity or religion. It is a cultural thing.”
However, CAN’s Vice President and Chairman of the association in Kaduna State, John Hayab, was not impressed with Buhari’s submission, saying “Buhari and his government will never stop from amusing us with their tales by moonlight because what is happening in Zamfara, Sokoto, Katsina, Birnin Gwari, Southern Kaduna, Taraba, Plateau and others cannot be described as a cultural thing.
He told Punch correspondent in an interview: “President Buhari’s weak story about his conversation with President Donald Trump further confirms why his government does not care about the killings in our country by calling them cultural things.
“Just this (Tuesday) evening, I received a report from the Kaduna Baptist Conference President about the number of their members that have been killed by bandits in Kaduna State from January 2020 to date to be 105 and our President will call it a cultural thing? All we can say is may God save our Nigeria.”
CAMA: Bishop blasts Christian lawmakers
The Catholic Bishop of Nsukka, Most Rev. Godfrey Onah, has blamed Christians in the National Assembly (NASS), for the passage of the 2020 Companies and Allied Matters Bill (CAMA), signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari recently.
Bishop Onah, said in a remark during the Sunday Mass that if Christians in NASS had opposed the bill, it would not have been passed into law.
President Muhammadu Buhari had on Aug. 7, signed the CAMA bill into law, giving provision for religious bodies and charity organizations to be regulated by the registrar of the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), and a supervising minister.
“The question many Christians have been asking is, where were Christian legislators during the debate of this bill and its passage in the National Assembly?
“Because, if they had opposed this bill on the floor of the house, it would not have been passed and sent to the president for assent.
“I blame Christian legislators for doing nothing and allowing the passage of the 2020 CAMA Act,” he said.
“When I say that Christians are too divided and too selfish, don’t forget that the second in command in this country is a Senior Advocate of Nigeria, a professor of Law and a pastor.”
Onah, however, wondered what the Federal Government wanted to achieve in monitoring how the finances of churches in the country are managed when it contributed no dime to the church, NAN reports.
“Government should focus and monitor its ministries, agencies and other government institutions where it budgets billions of Naira annually and not church offerings.
“Had it been that the government gave allocations to churches and decided to monitor its usage, nobody will question the government,” he said.
Nigerians spit fire over fuel, electricity prices hike
Anger and condemnations, across the country, have continued to trail last week’s take off, of new increases in pump price of petroleum products and electricity tariffs, as directed by Federal Government.
Recall that the Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC) official, D.O. Abalaka announced on Wednesday September 3, on behalf of Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) that the new price of petroleum is now N151.56k per litre instead of N149 – N150 per litre which it was previously.
The new electricity tariff which the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) tagged “Service Reflective Tariff” has also come into effect. It requires consumers to pay N53.87 – N66.422 per kwh of electricity.
Outraged consumers of fuel and electricity have therefore warned government to get ready for collision with the masses if it fails to rescind these new prices.
Those who have expressed outrage over the new prices regimes include, the Organized Labour, Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC), Nigerian main opposition political party, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Nigeria Employers Consultative Association (NECA) and the Major Marketers Association of Nigeria (MOMAN).
Others are: Petroleum Products Retail Outlets Owners Association of Nigeria, the Independent Petroleum Marketers Association of Nigeria (IPMAN) and the Nigerian Association of Chambers of Commerce (NACCIMA).
The NLC said, “The frequent fuel price increase will no longer be accepted. We will not allow Nigerians fall victim of government ineptitude and negligence to make the country self-sufficient in terms of refining petroleum products at home.”
On its part, the PDP has described the price hike as “callous, cruel and punishing” and demanded an immediate reversal to avert a national crisis.
The All Industrial Global sees the incessant increase as a confirmation that deregulation means just price increase.
“This is unacceptable! Under a pandemic, we should put money in the pockets of citizens to revive collapsed livelihoods and preserve lives.” In its reaction, NECA said it has always urged Federal Government to adopt deregulation policy in the oil and gas downstream sector.
The MOMAN in its statement insists that monthly price variation of fuel was no longer sustainable. It urged PPRA to adopt quarterly price mechanism which would save the market the hassles of price volatility. The statements by IPMAN and NACCIMA also followed along the same line that the hike “…serves only to increase the severity and duration of the looming economic recession.”
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