Ekimogunmirror’s Adegunloye Kayode had an exclusive interview with Hon. Daves Akinbote. Hon Akinbote who was one of the contestants of the just concluded Local Government Election in Ondo West LGA. Hon Akinbote dwelled on the outcome of the election, youths’ attitude to election and the current state of the country under the leadership of APC.
Hon. Akinbote pulled a total of 17,000 votes at the election came second behind the PDP flagbearer Hon. Ogunya who won the election and was subsequently sworn in by the State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko. However in his lengthy talk he expressed his displeasure at the meagre turn out of people during the election, He further hinted that the turn out wasn’t up to 70% and of which those who came to vote were the oldies whereby the youths apparently didn’t come to the polling cente. He attributed the low turn of the youths to the fact that most youths are being disoriented stressing that when most of them finish from their various schools, what comes to their minds in travelling out of the Country in search of greener pastures.
On the APC led government and the push for restructuring the country, he said “In some of my tweets before the election, though Labour Party as a party we supported former president Goodluck Jonathan because we belief in the restructuring programme that they agreed on at the confab because it is obvious that without the restructuring being put in this country what we are practising is not a true federation and it can never engender development”. He further added that “Buhari, they just packaged his integrity as if all we need to drive a country is about integrity, they have forgotten that most people that would work with him have their own selfish agenda and majority of the people in APC now, I don’t see any difference in them they were part of the PDP regime for the past years.
Meanwhile, When asked whether the country was already in a state of comatose prior to the Buhari regime, He said “Jonathan left at the end of his tenure and Buhari came in may 29, every structure that might be put in place that is unconstitutional, I think that should be his first priority to prepare office for himself because he has his personality to engage with Nigerians. Nobody will tell me Jonathan is responsible for this failure we are experiencing because Buhari campaigned, nothing is happening now that was not in place during Jonathan regime, we have fuel scarcity but not as frequent as this, we have a dollar to 165 naira at highest then was 198 but now we are having 320/350, So there is nothing Jonathan left that is giving Buhari problem, it is just that in my opinion, APC and Buhari were not ready for government”.
However, When asked how the situation of the country can be remedied, in his words “Without deceiving ourselves Nigeria is still not yet a Nation, we are of different nation coming together and this can only be addressed by implementation of true federalism which has been agreed on at the confab which the report has been submitted and handed over to president Buhari but after a year in office some of us are not surprised that they are not implementing this report but to actually take Nigerians forward to a developmental stage I think we need to restructure this Country, we need to reduce our emphasis on the federal government. State and Local Governments are the closest to the people, attention must be given to them”.
In his brief talk about his political plans when asked he said, “I contested the last Local Government election, to me I did not perform badly, I am still on table with my strategists, we are still looking for the way forward and actually we really want to discuss with the leadership of our party because not everything can be done on our own, so far our constitution is yet to recognise independent candidate. I think Labour party will need some internal re-organisation, we really need to let people know because part of what affected in the last election was that it seems people are having this erroneous believe that LP is having a relationship with PDP. To the best of my knowledge if at all there will be a relationship maybe it will be on ideology, like on this issue of confab, my party and myself personally was in support of the confab maybe we also supported Jonathan that is why they are having this belief but we are trying to disabuse the minds of the people that we can present any credible candidate to contest for any political office in the land at the Federal, State and Local level.
Youths seem to shy away from politics, when asked the cause of this and his advice for the youths, he said “Number one thing if I would not deceive you is that the youths are actually lagging behind because of this statement am not comfortable with ‘Godfather’, because politics involves money, cash, raw cash and you and I know most of us are not gainfully employed most of us are just trying to survive just hustling, we double our hustling everyday. So I want to believe is the financial aspect that is actually discouraging some of them”. He however continued by admonishing that parties should create a better avenue for the youths “There should be an allocation as 30% as being allocated to the women, they should at least give 20% to the youths maybe and maybe this can encourage the youths to take part”.
When asked about the state of workers and reasons for non payment of salaries by the Ondo state, He said “The reasons are not far fetched, you don’t need to be a rocket scientist before you know, except for the restructuring no state except Lagos that was formerly a Federal capital that has access to national properties, federal government properties are in Lagos, companies that can give them enough money through IGR, taxes, business are moving there. You cannot compare Lagos state with Ondo state. Lagos state is another federal capital on its own. But coming back to Ondo state which is a civil servant state without the salary I don’t think money can go round, that is why as a person I am an advocate of true federalism, if you are practsing true federalism we can decide on what we do with our bitumen with the rocks in Akoko, with the cocoa in Idanre and Ondo city. We can know how to annex our resources, we will be able to plan our minimum wage, we will be able to know the size of our civil servants, we will be able to maintain our internal roads, we will be able to do a lot of things with what is accrued to us. You want have to depend on money from Abuja which is less than 26% given to states. So, I don’t want to blame the state government for not being able to pay the workers. Though it’s pitiable, I sympathise with the workers but the reality on ground is that the money is not there.
In conclusion he took his time to appreciate the interviewer as well as the ekimogunmirror brand, He further lauded the rapid effect that the Gleetz Magazine is having on the society and commended the immense efforts put in place by the Team.