NKEM PAUL, MARYANN ALANAME, NNANI EMMENUEL,
It was informative and comprehensive on the faithful Wednesday 23rd of January, when a team of editors and senior reporters from Evergreen Newspapers visited Barr. Olehi the AGA Gubernatorial Candidate in his private office located at Mbaise Road Owerri, Imo State for a press interview on his visions and missions for the state. He spoke on his tripods agenda that would sprang industrialization and sustainable development for the state.
May we meet you officially Sir?
Okay, my name is Olehi Ngozi. I am a lawyer. I am contesting for the office of Governor of Imo State in the forth coming general election, in All Grand Alliance. I am from Egbelubi Eziama in Ngorkpala Local Government Area of Imo State. I have been practicing law for many years I have been in Owerri. I belong to Nigeria Bar Association and also a member of International Law Association.
What will be your action in solving the economic hardship in Imo state?
Well, I have agenda for the people of Imo State. Imo state has been abandoned for quite some time, and therefore, I will resolve the issue when I become the Governor. It is necessary to give account of every activity going on in the state, thereby making sure that law is implemented in the state. The tripod agenda for the state which are: Accountability, Transparency and Rule of law will make the people of the state to be confident in the government and the idea of hardship will be solved when investment is in high rate.
What will be your immediate plans to resolve the rate of unemployment in Imo state?
My plans to the people of Imo State is to bring the ideas of industrialization which will help in the reduction of unemployment. Establishment of industries in the State will go a long way to stop the rate of unemployment. For example, cassava farming will yield enough fund for the public as international commodity. Cassava when processed, give a lot of products such as starch, flour, garri, etc. which give opportunities to the people when there is industrialization in the state. So, massive employment will actually reduce the rate of unemployment in Imo State.
Don’t you think industrialization is one of the most major needs of Imo state towards sustainable development and economic growth?
The rule of law have a lot of role to play today in the state’s sustainable development programs. For instance we have 18 judges in Imo state, 1016 cases and this judges can handle only 1500 cases in a year and with that it will take them 77 years to handle this cases, no investor comes in to invest on such economy that does not abide by the rule of law and Imo state till date is being ruled by the1963 laws. The investors look for an economy with enabling modern laws that would guarantee the rule of law.
Every local government area in Imo state have one industrial material or the other and the government needs to address the issue to ensure that industries are established across the 27 local government areas (L.G.A) in the state based on the industrial raw materials available in each of this localities. Using cassava and palm fruit as an illustration. It is stated that cassava have almost 16 industrial by-products today and is said to generate more wealth than crude oil and the rest of natural resources in the near future as it is now an International Commodity.
The rule of law comes first among others towards the delivery of good governance, sustainable economy as it makes a state industrial friendly. No investor will come into a state of jungle to invest their money and the tripod agenda of my government; accountability, transparency, and the rule of law will guarantee; industrialization and sustainable development as it will attract both local and strong international investors and industrialists to invest in the state. We are not talking about rebuilding Imo but Imo state that can compete and measure standards favourably with the European countries.
What will be your take on the issue of god fatherism as one of the major problem in Imo state?
I will accommodate any idea from any individual whose ideas can contribute towards the development of the state. However, the actual thing that can tackle the problem is that Electorate should wake up from their slumber, I am going to run people centered government not God fatherism centered government. I advise the people of Imo State to vote rightly by voting me as the Governor of Imo state.
What is your take on poor staffing, inadequate medical equipment and underemployment of professional medical practitioners to healthcare system?
Alright, we don’t need 27 general hospitals across the 27 local government areas of Imo state to get a sound health care system delivery in the state, what the state needs is at least one standard and well equipped hospitals in the three senatorial district of the state and health Centre’s across the entire autonomous community in the state. A hospital and health Centre’s that should be functional every minute of 24hours daily.
However, what we actually need, just like in Europe is to ensure and provide a well sanitized environment as the environment we inhabit have a lot of role to play in our state of health, the case scenario of a Bishop in Europe during the 18th century that malaria killed at a very early age of his ministry as a Bishop.
The poor and shortage of medical staffs in the state and the inability of Owerri nursing school to pass accreditation for a decade plus is a major setback. These are some of the problems we are going to fix when we come on board.
What are your vision for Imo people if emerged the Governor come 2019?
Dreams and vision concerning Imolites if emerged the governor come 2019 election is based on a brand new Imo State with global standard not to recover and rebuild what already is in existence but to invest on industrial potentials in in the State by bringing the best investors, we are going to look at the three agenda which are rule of law, accountability and transparency with the new initiative on global standard for the state based on educational system. These will bring good interaction on the economy of the state and will support the standard of education.
Imo has been totally destroyed based on the fact that Imolites are suffering and it will take a long time to recover and rebuild Imo State. To rebrand Imo State. Remember, Imo state was the fifth richest state in Nigeria with (GDP) of 8 something billion dollars, while Anambra was the sixteen richest state with (GDP) of 6 something dollars. Today Anambra is on the top, leaving Imo State behind because of bad administration. Using Singapore as an example that is not as big as Imo, despite the fact that they don’t have natural resources that Imo is endowed with. That is why am not talking of rebuilding but to build a new Imo into a global community. It is very possible.