Adegbola Temitope had an interview with Mrs. Zainab Yusuf Ogundana, the National Coordinator of Buhari Continuity Movement (BCM) and the National Coordinator of ABAT (Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu) Foundation. She is also an indigene of Kogi State.
Speaking on why Governor Yahaya Bello should be re-elected, Zainab gave a breakdown on who he is and his achievements as well as prospects as the Governor of Kogi State.
What does ABAT do?
It’s a foundation for Bola Ahmed Tinubu. A group of people came together to study,the man Tinubu, his life and got to understand and discovered that he is an examplary leader, a leader to be emulated and so we established this foundation to breed leaders in his like.
Can we say Governor Yahaya Bello is in the likes of Bola Ahmed Tinubu?
Yes, because Bola Ahmed Tinubu is a leader of leaders because he has raised and mentored several leaders in the likes of the Vice President, several ministers and governors in the south west and all over Nigeria. Governor Yahaya Bello is also following in that footstep. He is raising and breeding leaders as well. People have passed through him and he has mentored people to become exemplary leaders. One of those he mentored has become a senator from Kogi central. Some have become commissioners and still raising and mentoring people like myself and others.
How much do you know or can say about Governor Yahaya Bello, his past achievements and what should the citizens of Kogi State expect of him in the next tenure,if re elected?
Governor Yahaya Bello is a leader and a philantrophist and a very compassionate person. He is reliable and ready to mentor people. Even before he came into governance, he is the man of the people. He has the interest of the people at heart and has used so many avenues to empower people.
Now that Kogi election is close by, what can you say is a motivational factor to make the citizens of Kogi re-elect him?
I want to encourage them to re-elect him again because everyone would say that during his tenure, he worked so hard to combat crime. He had spies all over the state, in various communities, through which so many hideouts and difficult situations were discovered, exposed and addressed . Before he became the Governor about three and half years ago, stealing, Kidnaping, armed robbery etc, was so high, the state was in serious dilema but now, there is peace in the state. He is now working on infrastructure and several roads are being constructed in Kogi west, east and Central where he is from.
Governor Yahaya Bello has zero tolerance to crime. He has recieved several awards as the best Governor in terms of fighting crime to the bearest minimum. The crime rate has reduced drastically because he took that aspect to heart. Though, the crime situation in the country at large is not encouraging but in Kogi state there is no more unrest. He gave instant judgements, demolished buildings of crimes and also told the youths to honourable drop their weapons.
What is he doing on employment and also to reduce crime?
People say Kogi is a civil servant state, but now he is encouraging everyone to be independent. Not to rely only on the government. He helped them grow their businesses and also taught them and trained the youths as well as give them facilities to grow with. He wants to make the state an enterprenuaral state. He discovered that there were lots of ghost workers in the state, so he did screening to ensure everyone gets what they worked for. He is taking the state out of being a civil servant state to make people establish their own industries, companies without depending on government jobs alone.
In the next four years, he wants to look at the welfare of the people in terms of salaries and renumerations etc. He came to unite the people of Kogi. He worked against discrimination. He made sure all Kogites see each other as brothers.
Comparing past governors and achievements, what has Governor Yahaya Bello done differently to make him re-elected as the Governor of Kogi state?
He has been able to combat crime and also for every Kogite who is ready to say the truth, you can say he is passionate about Kogi. He wants the people to be self reliant. The diffence is very clear. I have met and heard him speak about his people. He was a business man before being a politician so because of so many untapped mineral resources in the state, people now think outside the box and now they can establish gold processing industries, quarry businesses, etc aside from just being a government worker.
What has been the cause of the issues between the governor of Kogi state and his deputy?
He has been a PDP person, so the mentality has always been there. He was always working contrary to the manifesto and ideologies of the state government, so it was difficult for him to cope and has now been suspended by the state APC. So hopefully, in the next tenure, someone better that would jointly work together with Governor Yahaya Bello to achieve greater things for Kogi State would be his running mate which I believe they would be re-elected to make Kogi State a better place.