Nigeria

Why power should rotate to South in 2023 —Abiru, Lagos Chief Whip

The Chief Whip, Lagos State House of Assembly, Honourable Rotimi Abiru, speaks on issues concerning the Assembly and the administration of the state governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, in this interview by BOLA BADMUS.

Recently, the state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu commissioned about 31 road projects in Ifako Ijaiye Local Council Development Area. Why is your constituency, Bariga not privileged to have similar projects?

We have some ongoing projects in Bariga as a matter of fact. There are 11 roads that were awarded together to support the Urban Regeneration Plan of the state and people of Bariga. The roads were awarded together and as we speak work is ongoing on these roads.  Aside, There is a major alternate road that the government is also trying to finish, and it includes Odunsi road, which leads to the highway via Alhaji Ariyo through to Jagunmolu Road, and I think it’s a major one. So, I can categorically say that we also have a cluster of roads; there are about are about 11 ongoing road projects in Bariga. I can say for a fact that we have ongoing projects that we hope would be completed before the end of 2020.

Speculations are rife that the national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Chief Bola Tinubu about his intention to contest the 2023 presidency. What is your view on the planned bid?

Personally, I think he has every right and he is also eminently qualified to contest for any position that is available in the country. If he feels to run for the presidency, so be it. That’s his personal choice. But I have not heard or read any comment credited to the great leader that he is running for the presidency. People may be clamouring for his participation in the presidential poll and I can say he is eminently qualified, so if he chooses to run, so be it. And I don’t see anything that is wrong in that for someone who has governed a state like Lagos and has been nurturing subsequent governors that have been bringing about some of the good things we say are happening in Lagos. He is also human; he may have his shortcomings, just like any other person but in terms of governance, I think he understands what governance is all about.

As regards the arrangement within our party, I think it is the legitimate right of the South to contest for the presidency, come 2023 because there is an understanding among the APC leaders to ensure that power moves to the South in 023. There is an understanding among the leaders of the party on how to deal with such issue whenever it arises.

The 2020 budget proposal has been passed into law by the Lagos State House of Assembly. What are those significant things you expect the budget to achieve for the citizens of the state?

The budget, as its name suggests, is Budget of Awakening and it is a budget that will support the T.H.E.M.E. Agenda which is the main focus of the present government. The intention of the House is to ensure it assists the executive in hitting the ground running as soon as feasible.

To what extent have you been able to fulfil your promise to the people of your constituency? What are the areas you want to impact positively in their lives?

The first thing for me is to continue to represent them well and faithfully in the House; it is for me to continue to be their mouth; to be their lobbyist on matters that have to do with government’s programmes and policies. There are some extracurricular activities that we partake in, which are also a way of feeling the pulse of our people and make them happy from time to time. These we do, these we shall continue to do, and we also hope and pray that things get better in Nigeria. No doubt, we are a state with so many issues but we cannot but to continue to have hope in the country. President Muhammadu Buhari, as it were, is also trying to do his best to ensure probity, accountability and transparency in government but in some areas, corruption is trying to fight back in the system and that poses a big challenge to those directing the affairs of the state and the country in general.