We’ll change narrative of council administration in Kwara – Aniba

AbdulKadir Aniba, from Ibagun ward is a former board member and PDP aspirant for Ilorin East Local Government in the forthcoming local government election. In this telephone interview, he speaks with ACTING EDITOR, MUMINI ABDULKAREEM about his chances and plans if elected. Excerpts:
What informed your decision to contest for the council chairmanship of Ilorin East?
My main purpose is to advance the youth agenda which was brought to the front burner of national discourse by our leader and immediate past Senate President, Dr Abubakar Bukola Saraki through the not-too-young-to-run. There are many things that I also think we need in my constituency which I am convinced that we can actualise or bring to fruition if God decree we get there in the area of infrastructure for the betterment of the council. The youth will occupy a very strategic and important aspect of our administration if elected and as a policy, we must carry that sector along to develop the local government. Agreed, the local government cannot operate on the same high level as the state, but with our modest efforts coupled with the our goal to run an inclusive government, I think we can add value and bring dividend of democracy to the people of my constituency and the state in general with a special focus on the youth. For us, it is going to be a leadership of service and sacrifice when we get there by Allah’s grace.
Stakeholders endorsement is very crucial to achieve your aspiration, how strong is their support base for you?
By God’s grace, I have the collective support of the stakeholders and elders of my constituency to achieve this mandate which shows my wide acceptance among our people. Although I represent the youth, we recognised the place of our elders and stakeholders in running a successful administration that will benefit everybody. This is my third term of contesting for the seat. The first was with the likes of Tunde Akanbi Oniyo which produced Bar Abdullateef Okandeji. Despite that I was one of the leading candidates then before the election, I adhered to the party’s directive and supported his candidature. I was also an aspirant during the last council election which brought in the now suspended chairman in Ilorin East, Mumini Lah but I had to step down because of zoning and in respect for our leader, Dr Bukola Saraki and stakeholders as a party man.
How confident are you this time around?
I cannot say because I was not elected or opportuned in the past to lead the council because of circumstances that were beyond my control, I should give up the struggle of refused to contest again. My chances are even brighter than before now coupled with the support of the youth and elders of my constituency. We will prove our strength as grassrooters for our leaders to know and understand that they have people who they can rely on to carry out and replicate their core values of service and selflessness to serve the community and the people.
How have been the reactions to your aspiration?
The reactions that had trailed our emergence will tell you that this is a done project. If those that I never informed about it are my greatest campaigners and are the ones raising the awareness on facebook and many social media platforms, then that is very instructive. Even those from the ruling APC have declared their support for my candidacy and ready to vote for me if I emerge as the party’s candidate in my constituency. We have many things up our sleeves and this project is the first of many other things to follow to return our party back to power.
Do you think the PDP is still a preferred brand in Kwara?
The party is very much on ground and a formidable brand at that especially with what we are experiencing now in the state. Initially, the people voted for party based on the stakeholders or elders recommendation even if such person is not the popular candidate. But this is not the era of preferred candidates but the most popular candidate one who has the support, trust and confidence of his constituency. That is what will define this election.
There are concerns about the election holding looking at the situation we have at hand now?
With respect to His Excellency, Governor Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, I think the election would hold. For the PDP, we are very confident that even if the election holds next month, the party will emerge victorious in Ilorin East Local Government by Allah’s grace. And with what is happening in the state now, the party will emerge in other areas also. What is uppermost in our mind now is how our party can excel now and we are very focus on that.
What is your message?
I will appeal to the people to vote for those that have the genuine love and determination to serve them. My supporters should be well informed that this is not about me but them and I am ready to serve them and myself because this is the government of everybody aimed to spread the dividends of democracy. We promised to run an all inclusive government if elected and give everybody sense of belonging. We want to change the way our local government is governed and add value to the system that will birth and promote a government of accountability and transparency. We need to support our local government and state and change the narrative of non performance or embezzlement. Our supporters should keep on supporting us, our leader, Dr Bukola Saraki and the PDP to ensure we come out victorious. I will also appeal to members of the APC who have now seen the reality to team up with us and vote to deliver the council. This is not about Aniba as an individual but about the betterment of our local government. I promised not to disappoint on my promises by God’s grace and urged our supporters to carry on with their efforts and striving till the goal is achieved. I assure them that we will conquer if we don’t relent and that PDP will emerge in the next election.

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