‘Personal reputation will determine next governor of Ekiti’

Bimbo Daramola

Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), Bimbo Daramola, represents Ekiti North Federal Constituency 1 in the House of Representatives on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC). He spoke with journalists on the coming 2018 governorship election in Ekiti State and his chances of winning the contest. SEYE OLUMIDE reports.

Fayose’s performance since 2014
Whatever interpretation anybody decides to give to my response does not matter because some people will reason along the fact that because the All Progressives Congress (APC) was defeated by the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the 2014 governorship election or that I am only reacting because I happened to be the Director-General of the erstwhile Governor, Kayode Fayemi re-election that we lost. These are inconsequential to me. In terms of tangible impact, I am not too sure that the past four years have vindicated those who voted for Dr. Peter Ayodele Fayose.

Fayose’s concept of stomach infrastructure
Let me make this clear to you, we would let history makers decide whether Ekiti people actually voted for stomach infrastructure because today, they are hungry. You need to reconcile the paradox of winning election on the basis or riding on the popularity, so to speak, of stomach infrastructure or a political philosophy that amplifies tokenism as against enduring political philosophy like the one Fayemi did. So, today, if eight months salaries have not been paid you will now connect the dot to know that stomach infrastructure as a philosophy has failed.

So, I am not too sure that Ekiti people voted for stomach infrastructure and I am convinced that today, nobody needs to be told.

I think there were a number of things that worked against us at that election and I could say one of them will be the fact that there are those who were beneficiaries; officials of government who deliberately decided to take a pound of flesh from the administration at the time. And of course, you cannot oversight the fact that the Federal Government might work heavily against us in the election.

Factors that would determine winner of the next governorship election
The only thing that validates your promises is your reputation, if someone made a promise to you yesterday, only thing that makes you believe is the fact that he said it yesterday and he did it. Ekiti people should be looking out for a man who has proven beyond reasonable doubt, against all circumstances to say first and foremost what is your reputation? Come with your strong reasons.

My chances among other APC gubernatorial aspirants
I am not going to say I am the best candidate. I like to shy away from words like the best, superlative descriptions like that but I know that I am going to be a very good governor. I have a reputation that goes ahead of me. I was in the House of Representatives for four years and by the grace of God I challenge you to go to my constituency and see what I have done and compare it with 16 years of representation before me. There is a 32 bed hospital built by me, we have intervened in the lives of many people, medically, educationally, all kinds of manners and ways. There is no town or village in my constituency that does not have the impact of Bimbo Daramola. I never cut deal with anybody. I am in touch with them. The young people believe in me, the elderly trust me, so, what else are you looking for? As a parliamentarian I was opening rural road network from my pocket.

Why the desire to rule Ekiti
In the first instance, Fayemi’s defeat was mine defeat because I was massively involved in the enterprise but what got me interested in this race, riding on the back our lost at Dr. Fayemi’s election and it was logical we were going to lose anyway because there will be bandwagon effect, so I pulled away, I said I was done with politics but when people began to show interest in this race and there were 24 people at that time, eight assembly members came to me and said we are not saying you should run or you should not run but look at these 24 people, tell us one of them by your own estimation, who thoroughly represents the ideals and the ideas of these party? I can humbly say to you that I have been an active member of this party for twelve years. I am a die-in-the-wool progressive, I have never shifted my ground one day, I have remained with the people. And more than anything else, I have the will to do. That is one of my strongest edges.

How I plan to rule Ekiti
The first challenge to address is the negative perception that that Ekiti is a dead zone and that is why the mantra of my campaign is ‘Restoring our Pristine Identity. The same state that had the appellation of breeding professors is now the scumbag among the committee of states. I need to fix that. And there is something I call the softer side of government, if you don’t get the idea of softer side of government; any idiot can build schools, do roads and things like that but it will take a man who is completely deep to know that one of the challenges that we have in Ekiti State today is the fact that we have been stereotyped and our minds are beginning to accept that stereotype to accept that nothing good can come out of Ekiti State.

I will bring out the value that is inherent in that state and once I have the value restored and everybody accepts there is value, value added to any product, people will pay for it.



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