“I feel keeping a promise to yourself is a direct reflection of the love you have for yourself. I used to make promises to myself and find them easy to break. Today, I love myself enough to not only make a promise to myself, but I love myself enough to keep that promise”.
“Losers make promises they often break. Winners make commitments they always keep” – Denis Waitley
A promise is a declaration or assurance that one will do something or that a particular thing will happen. In the build up to any election, focus is centered on the promises of the candidates seeking offices. Politics everywhere in the world operates within this premise. While many politicians dangle promises without intention to fulfil them after assumption of office, few among them make promises which served as covenant with the people for assessment when the need arises. To fulfil these commitments after inauguration, few politicians engage the people to build a road-map for actualization.
To a layperson on the street, a legislator is regarded as one to whom the executive power to approve contracts and fix infrastructures resides. I had same impression in the past because of the participation of intending legislators in campaign processes during the electioneering period for President, Governors and Chairmen of Local Governments. The one agenda of a legislator is to make laws, so when a lawmaker makes promises to the people instead of pledge to lobby, the electorate should feel wary because the role of a lawmaker is almost in tandem to that of a judge in the judiciary.
Provided tenures are attached to the reign of political office holders, it will be necessary for leaders to assess their campaign vows made to the people and relate it with the challenges encountered during their early days in office. Passing through challenges doesn’t mean failure is ahead, it motivates an individual to find a panacea. That is why obstacles in fulfilling obligations must be discussed earlier with the electorates, probably within the first three months in office. Meanwhile some use the opportunity of 100days in office to explain the new means of achieving their campaign promises.
During the 2015 general elections where politicians were selling their manifestos to the electorates, Hon Tajudeen Obasa a member representing Ojo Federal Constituency referred to as an ‘ant’ by his counterpart in APC told the people that his major aim was to restore hope for the youths (independent set in the society) by building them to cater for the needs of the children and aged ( dependent). While many promised the impossible and unrealistic, he latched onto his purpose by insisting that his aim was to empower the youths.
Despite the challenges and arduous journey associated with a first time lawmaker in fulfilling his campaign promises, the “eniafe” of Ojo Federal Constituency was at ease in settling down for legislative activities.
Due to the lingering crisis rocking APC at the early stage of the Eight Assembly, he decided to use such rare opportunity to engage his constituents in developing a roadmap for his sole agenda in building the youths. After series of deliberation with relevant stakeholders. He decided to work on the following steps to achieve his mission of empowering the youths:
Personally consulting with related agencies in charge of achieving the Millennium Development Goals to survey Ojo Federal Constituency and look for possible solutions on how to build skill acquisition centres, quarterly seminar to introduce youth to new opportunities in wealth creation, setting up of a resource centre to educate the youth on Information Communication Technology (ICT), working with the CBN,BOI,SMEDAN and other related agencies for the provision of loans for market men and women, relating with the National Inland Waterways in providing a conducive environment for water transportation, ensuring that artisans have access to loans for the improvement of their businesses, summer coaching for school children during their holiday season, assisting the future leaders of tomorrow with JAMB and GCE scratch cards and other means, to mention a few.
For him rolling out an agenda at the beginning and also re-visiting it for proper planning is a clear sign of success for his constituents to celebrate because the tendencies of building worthy legacies for all would come to reality.
Some of his activities within 100days includes:
Paying a visit to pregnant women at Ojo Primary Health Centre to donate baby kits. As a man of the people, he decided to dance “Godwin” with the ante-natal mothers to exercise them for safe delivery.
To show his concern and displeasure at the slow pace of work at the Lagos-Badagry expressway, he along with community leaders visited the portion of the road attached to Ojo Federal Constituency for an on spot assessment.
Undeterred by the rigorous task associated with night travelling on the waterways,He visited the riverine communities to commiserate with the affected families whose children were involved in a tragic boat mishap on their way to school. He sympatised and shared in their pain,assuring them of a better,brighter and more promising tomorrow, while the ruling party summoned the families to a meeting at a central point for fear of plying the waterways,Hon. Obasa visited them house to house to show his pledge of ” I’m the errand boy, they are the Oga”
Azeez Ahmed is a legislative aide to Hon. Obasa