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Ministerial screening ‘ll be different this time — Rep Ahwinahwi

Mr. Solomon Ahwinahwi represents Ughelli North/Ughelli South/Udu Federal Constituency of Delta State in the House of Representatives on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP.  In this interview he says that the recent defections of party chieftains in his state, would not impact negatively on the party.

By Emman Ovuakporie & Johnbosco Agbakwuru

Some PDP members in your state recently defected to the APC. How do you feel about that?

Some People have defected from the APC to the PDP.  Some also defected from the PDP to APC. It is not a new trend. Delta is a PDP state. The governor of the state is from PDP, the senators are from the PDP, the 10 House of Representatives members are PDP. The majority of the House of Assembly members are PDP members and if you look at the council chairmen, they are all PDP members.

So defecting from the PDP to the APC doesn’t really make any difference. As I speak to you, the PDP is getting stronger. We are one family, I can assure you that if there is another election, PDP will win all the seats just like we did at the last elections.

President Muhammadu Buhari assured Nigerians that he would appoint people of impeccable integrity in his cabinet. Do you think that the ministerial nominees fit the bill?

The President promised that he was going to choose people of integrity, people that are not of questionable characters, but we are just waiting.  I also read in the papers that they are also going to bring in the EFCC to screen these ministerial nominees, I think it is going to be a very good one, because whoever has any blemish will not scale through.

Issue of integrity

This time, it is not going to be business as usual. So let us keep our fingers crossed. You know Nigerians are so much in a hurry, but I am appealing to them to exercise patience until the screening is done. I really don’t want to go into the issue of integrity.

On Dogara’s leadership


We just started in the House and our Speaker, Dogara is somebody who has got listening ears.   He is trying to carry everybody along.    We cannot start apportioning blames at this time because we just started and considering the crisis we experienced. But we have just started on a very good note. Let us see what will happen, but I can assure you that with him, we are going to have a good team in the house to debate on issues that concern Nigerians.

What areas do you think the government of Delta State can concentrate on?

I will advise the governor to invest in human capital because today if he invests on human capital. By doing so, he will create more jobs for our youth. We are already looking beyond oil. To concretely achieve that, he should concentrate on agriculture.

How feasible is Dogara’s nine-point legislative agenda?

Dogara like I said is somebody, who has so much experience in the House.  For him to have come up with the agenda, it shows that he is a serious person.  He is a man of integrity. For him to have come up with such a blueprint, I can categorically tell you that he is going to work on them and they are achievable.

What message do you have for your constituents?

I really want to thank my constituents because they have also shown love not only to me as their son, they have also shown love to the party itself because they also voted for Senator Ighoyota Amori.

They also voted for our governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa and the House of Assembly members. If you look at the history of Delta politics, this is the first time my constituency actually participated en masse.  I want to assure them that the promises we made, will be fulfilled.

On agenda for his constituents

My agenda for my constituents is to ensure that I create job opportunities and also encourage them to engage in skills acquisition and by so doing the unemployment rate in our constituency will be largely reduced. When people have something doing, there will not be crisis.

Already, I have started the skills acquisition by empowering people. The best you can do is to empower human beings, not just to allow them to remain dependent. When I was campaigning I pledged to ensure that the Delta Steel Company is revived, and I will do so.


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