The senatorial candidate of the Justice Must Prevail Party (JMPP) in Kwara Central Alhaji Daud Awwal says he has no personal grudge against the Senate President Bukola Saraki in seeking to represent the district in the National Assembly this year.
In this interview with PMNEWS, Awwal said politics is not a do-or-die-affair.
Why are you in politics?
”Politics is about the people and party, it’s not a do or die affair, it is not warfare, it’s about the 36 states in Nigeria, it’s about 250 ethnic groups in Nigeria. It’s about 774 local governments in Nigeria. A Better Nigeria is possible 2019 if we choose the right leaders. Nigeria needs men of proven potential in government and not experienced criminals groomed by a failed system. Be courageous to vote for a party that is ready to redress the injustice in the land. Justice Must Prevail in Nigeria, Justice must prevail in Kwara State, Justice must prevail in my constituency, justice must be recognised in all constituencies in Kwara State and in Nigeria.
What’s your opinion of those involved in the politics of Kwara State?
No time for failed politicians in Kwara. We have been give opportunities to travel to over 46 countries around the world and we have witnessed how the developed countries utilized their revenue for meaningful development for their people in the social welfare, health sector, infrastructure, security, education, power sector.
We have seen how Dubai, UK, USA, Canada, Belgium, Germany, France transformed their countries and made it safer to live for their citizens. Why not Nigeria? Why not in Kwara. We have seen how the government system works in Britain being a member of Labour Party in the UK. We know how the party runs the government. I have experience which I believe none of the 16 contenders in the senatorial race have. I see how united the tribes and ethnic groups are, we have Fulanis, Yoruba, Barba, Tapa, Hausa Igbo in Ilorin, I believe it is time to change the situation in Kwara State. I don’t have any personal grudge with Bukola Saraki. I am only concerned about my people. We have seen how citizens in Lagos and other states are enjoying with better infrastructure and livelihood, why is this not happening in Kwara.
I have my people fully ready to support me. We have consult widely throughout the country to use our mineral resources for real development. If I am elected, we shall build town halls to meet people. We shall invest in education and human capital development, train and retrain the state workforce on 21st century service delivery technique, using modern day information technology.
I have travelled extensively to 46 countries around the world due to the nature of my job; we have opportunity to see how their government works. I believe we can do the same in Kwara State. Kwara has huge potential in tourism, we have agricultural potential and other avenues which can generate huge revenue for Kwara without waiting for federal government to give us money to pay workers’ salaries and also we have many other potential which can be used to boost our infrastructures. JMPP is ready to transform Kwara.
Why are you so passionate about Kwara?
Kwara was derived from Kwararafa tribe who settled in the old North Central and the State was created 14th May 1967 during the regime of Gen. Yakubu Gowon. Our State is said to be the gateway between the North and South in Nigeria.
The capital is Ilorin where I was born which lies 306 kilometres of Lagos and 500 km South West of Abuja. The people of Kwara are made up of Yoruba, Nupe, Fulani, Hausa and Baruba. We had six civilian governors and 11 administrators since the creation of my state. My people are still suffering.
Kwara State is blessed with human capital, the best lawyers in Nigeria, the best Ulama in Nigeria, the best second head of state- (Gen. Tunde Idiagbon) in Nigeria. We need genuine investors to invest in Kwara State in the solid minerals sector to take the advantage of mineral deposit. We shall provide adequate fund from the allocation for my constituency and we shall set up environmental management committee to help them deliver the job. This also will create more than 200,000 jobs for my people in Kwara. They will stop begging to survive. We have Gold, Clay, Garnet, Mica, Kaolins, Marble, Iron-Ore, Columbite, Tantalite, Feldspar (consisting of alluminosilicates of potassium, sodium and calcium) in Kwara State. They are all untapped mineral resources . If I am elected we shall work with the federal government and the international community to help us exploit these. These could be exploited to form the base for industrial development in Kwara State.
Your findings in Kwara?
My findings reveal that government hospitals no longer treat survival of patients as priority. Drugs are as expensive, zero interest for our education, products of our schools cannot write, graduates are unemployed, no school provide teaching aid to promote the efforts of teachers, job opportunity is 10 percent and those god-fathers use many youths as thugs. Workers are dying of hunger due to poor and irregular payment of salaries. Teachers are not promoted so they are frustrated; availability of water is zero, security is zero; empowerment of women in the politics in Kwara is zero.
What do you have against the Senate President?
I have no grudge with Bukola Saraki, his father and my fathers were in the same party NPN 1979. I have written 800 pages about the biography of his father-Late Olusola Saraki (may Almighty Allah grant his soul Aljannah), his achievements and how he installed five civilian governors in Kwara state and how he fell out with them were mentioned. All those who benefited from Bukola administration were not left out in my book. The book was written in Britain and published in the United States of America.(Just google BABA OLOYE DR ABUBAKR OLUSOLA SARAKI by Dauda Awwal).
Trust us, as you know, the gestation of elephant takes 18-22 months, human gestation takes 9 months, mosquitoes take 24-48 hours, new transformation of Kwara vision, dreams need preparation and change of leaders. JMPP candidates in Kwara are the right people to wipe out corruption in Kwara, we shall cast down the powers of darkness, and we shall overturn false systems and prepare the youths for tomorrow’s future. They will say they care but watch their actions not their words. We need to address critical needs in education, health, social enterprises and rehabilitation.
Nigeria has about 10,000 kilometres of waterways which if developed through provision of auxiliary facilities will provide a year-round navigation for transportation of bulk cargo and passengers. Nigeria has the second largest length of waterways in Africa. Twenty-eight of the nation’s 36 states can be accessed through water, linked to five neighbouring countries of Benin Republic, Chad, Niger. In US, UK, Canada many heavy products such as steel and other products are moved through the inland waterways.
Do you believe in prayers to bring about the desired changes in Kwara?
I am not opposing prayers nor religions houses but Nigeria needs more industries than religious houses. Many people in the other developed countries spend more time on research in the middle of the night than vigils we do in Nigeria. Nigeria may remain poor if we do nothing about this. When European Christian missionaries came to Africa they built schools that our grandparents attended for free and the situation is different today.
What is your message for the youths?
Some youths engage in fraud, kidnapping, drug business because of lack of employment in the country, they are not lazy, we need to address the issues of killings, suffering, hardship, disunity, nepotism, failure. Difficulties in your life will not destroy you but to help you realise your hidden potential and power.
My fellow Kwarans, you shall be liberated from enslavement which has been abolished in the world. A positive mind finds opportunity in everything. A negative mind finds fault in everything.
We need to empower women because a man is born through a woman and falls in love with a woman and he marries a woman and I am amazed about the man or government that doesn’t respect women in society. Majority of them vote during the general elections in Nigeria, why neglect them?
The role of women in today’s society is as important as that of men when it comes to legal, educational, socio-economic, religious matters and the media. We tend to employ different yardsticks. Traditionally, chauvinists have always looked upon women as inferior to men. In the past, the norm was that men would work and women would stay at home and raise the kids, does the household activities. We all remember how Gbemisola Saraki was humiliated in the last elections in Kwara State and this happened in other states in Nigeria.
Politics is real life; it’s not a do or die thing. It’s not warfare it’s about the people’s welfare. We must fight for our freedom, we must stand against embezzlement, we must fight for true democracy. We will not be silent and we shall not be oppressed, humiliated and suppressed. JMPP shall win Kwara Senatorial District seat Insha Allah come 2019.