The People Should Expect Better Representation And People-Oriented Programmes – Hon Ombamas

On Friday September 13, 2019, the State and National Assembly Petition Tribunal sitting in Lafia upheld the election of Honourable Abdulkarim Usman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) to represent Akwanga/Nassarawa Eggon/Wamba Federal Constituency.

In the lead judgment, the Chairman of the Tribunal, Justice Willy Chechey confirmed that the PDP candidate polled the highest votes and was declared winner of the February 23 polls by the Independent National Electoral Commission, INEC.

Immediately after the ruling by the Tribunal, Eggonnews had an interview with the Honourable Member, excerpts of which are hereby presented.

What is your reaction to the ruling of the tribunal over the petition against your election?

I am particularly pleased with the ruling at the Tribunal sitting in Lafia, Nasarawa State. The verdict has clearly shown that the will of the people has been upheld; it also affirmed the people’s votes on me. What will I say than to reciprocate the confidence reposed on me by the good people of my constituency?

We have already set out plans on how best to serve the people, particularly the people of my Constituency, knowing me too well when I served them at the State Assembly in 2011, they knew my capacity and what I can do and that’s why they voted for me again to represent them at the National Assembly.

My election this time is a clear indication that the will of the people prevailed, and the judgment at the Tribunal responded appropriately by dismissing the case for lack of merit. I am impressed by the verdict and it is another way to strengthen our democracy, hoping that my opponent would take it in good fate.

What is your message to the petitioner?

I am extending a hand of friendship to him for the interest of peace, progress and service to our people. Dr. Abdullahi Yau is my brother and we hail from same constituency. Election is not war, sometimes you fail and sometimes you win, but all power belongs to God who gives power to whosoever He so pleases, and today He made me this time have an edge over him not because I am much better than him, but because I am favoured, and perhaps, it is a call to service to our people. We shall do our best to touch their lives.

For the period that the petition lasted at the Tribunal, did it affect you in service delivery to your people?

Not at all, I am a man of confidence who is focused and determined in service delivery to the people of my constituency. In fact, it was at that period that we flagged off work on two primary healthcare centres and currently under construction. We have one at Ogbagi/Agunji in Nassarawa Eggon Local Government Council has been roofed and is left with little finishing touch to be commissioned.  The one at Anashua, work was stopped due to inaccessibility of the road to the place during raining season, but as soon as things normalize, we shall ensure to complete the project.

Now that the matter is over, what should the people expect?

I was once at the State House of Assembly, things that I did at that time will see the light of the day, I believe in community developmental projects by ensuring people in our constituency have the opportunity to smile again.

So the people should expect a better representation and people-oriented programmes that would have direct bearing to their lives in the Constituency

Already, we are making efforts to reach out to some NGOs for some service delivery to see how they can come to our constituency and bring government presence to the people through water supply, rural electrification, healthcare service delivery and what have you.

We are also compiling names of our youths who are school leavers, graduates and still without job to see how they will be gainfully employed.

Aside that, we also realized that there are serious issues of ecological problems, we shall ensure to bring experts to make assessment and come out with a plans on how to salvage the challenges that our people are facing within their various communities. We are really elected to serve the people and that is what shall always put at the back of our mind and not to negate them.

You were once in the State House of Assembly, in what ways has that prepared you in this bigger and higher legislative responsibilities?

You know, the saying that says ‘experience is the best teacher’, thank God I am not going there as a novice, I was once a legislator and lawmaking is no longer new thing to me anymore. So for this reason, I think I am in the right position even though the scope of the National Assembly is wide compared to the State Assembly, and maybe the members are about 260, while in the State has just 24. But still, that shall not be too difficult task in doing my best to see that people’s lives are touched with bills sponsored at the National Assembly for the period I will represent my constituency.

There are fears that the National Assembly will be mere rubber stamp of the President Muhammadu Buhari because of the manner of the emergence of the principal officers. What is your reaction?

That’s very wrong, I don’t think so. The National Assembly members are people with high repute and have leadership qualities, abilities and capacities. For your information, it may interest to know that the Speaker and Deputy Speaker are four times Members of the Lower Chamber. So, they already have a lot of experiences to lead the Assembly.

In addition to that, the Speaker is also a lawyer and I believe he will be objective in the legislative proceedings and deliberations to ensure that things are done accordingly.

I am certain that every arm of government has its constitutional functions and duties to play for the development of Nigeria as a country without any interference and to provide good governance to the people. So I don’t think the National Assembly would be what the people are insinuating, because of the kind of legislators in the house.

Do you see PDP having any chase of coming back strongly to take mantle of leadership in the State?

Yes! PDP is still on ground particularly at the grassroots, and for sure would soon make a comeback strongly and take over the mantle. You are all aware of what the people are saying and I know whether we like it or not by the grace of God PDP will be back.

I want to call on the good people of the State to be peaceful and law abiding citizens, because peace is the only foundation of everything in which without no meaningful development can be said to be achieved in any given society.

So, I am calling on our people to unite and have love for each other. We are all brothers, and there is no need of creating problems for ourselves. Let’s embrace ourselves and remain peaceful irrespective of our differences to ensure that the State moves forward.

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