Home Politics Interview : ‘I’m candidate to beat in Bende South State Constituency’
Politics - March 16, 2023

Interview : ‘I’m candidate to beat in Bende South State Constituency’

Hon.Chijioke Mbalaso, is the New Nigeria People’s Party (NNPP) for House of Assembly candidate for Bende South State Constituency of Abia State. He speaks with Stanley Ihedigbo, his youthful vigour and several other qualities that make him the most qualified person for the office.

 

Why do you want to be a State lawmaker?

I always said whenever you see a bad leadership, in the area of governance, there is always bad legislatures. Because, the principle of check and balance  which the legislative are expected to do, in order to enhance good governance is not there. So, when the lawmakers  failed to do that, we will have bad leadership and that’s what you see in Abia State. If Abia State is not the worst state in Africa, at least, it is in Nigeria. I  am totally don’t  blaming   the executive arm of government because, most importantly the legislators are part of it. The lawmakers failed to do their job and that’s one of the things that inspired me to aspired to be a legislator in my constituency  because things need to be done right. Secondly, there are these issues of constituency development fund, which the state government normal give to the lawmakers both at state and federal levels. Most of the legislators used the fund for their own private propose because nobody is  holding them accountable. And I am making a promise that giving the opportunity I will  make sure that my constituency allocations teaches  the people. I  will use it to bring development to the people. Lastly, every legislator  in the house of assembly is to represent his or her constituency and the interests of people  supposed to be paramount. Also, every legislator is expected to attract government attention to his or her  constituency. These are the things we are not seeing for the past 14 years. And we have people who are representing us in the state house of assembly.  My constituency is like, we are not part of Abia State. No government present at the state level in our constituency. Accept the ones the Federal House representative and Senator attracted  that makes my constituency felt like Nigerians but at the state level, the government has not done anything and it is a huge concern for me.

What comes to your mind when it comes to representing the people?

Generally, members of Abia State House of Assembly has not achieved much because they are like rubber stamp in the hands of the governors. And it not supposed to be so because each arm of government is independent and should operate based on the principle of separation of power. Most importantly, in Abia State, it is so poor in terms of social infrastructure and other amenities not because there is no money. But the executive and state legislatures failed to do what they are supposed to do. Our legislatures don’t stand on their own in Abia State, because when the governors want to do anything, even when it is against the people, they would succeed. Every laws and policies in the state which passes through the house of assembly should be to the benefits of the people. But in the case of my state, many things are going wrong for many years because the legislatures are tools of the sitting governors. I know is like that in most states in Nigeria but the one in Abia State is so pronounced that in every corner of the state, you will see evidence of poverty. My aspiration is to make things change for the betterment of my people. I know that, there is very high level of politicking in the legislation but when it is on the negative side, what you see is state of decay but if it is positive side that you lobby people to see reasons and agreed to move the state forward the state would have rapid development. A situation government can’t construct roads, pays civil servants’ salaries and they are still operating. The state legislatures are not looking at that direction. What if the legislatures pass a law that any governor who don’t finish the payment of salaries arrears or pensions before the  end of his administration would be penalized or go to prison. The attitude of state governors owning salaries or pensions would change, not necessary because the state don’t have the money. Last week, Abia State governor ordered the commencement of mass promotions. These are civil servants that their promotions are due for the past ten years. And the promotion was only  one level because of the election. It is only in Abia State the health workers, most especially the medical doctors are be own 26 months salaries and others but the state legislatures are collecting their salaries and allowances. The legislators don’t see anything bad that the civil servants are be owing salaries. They are in the State of assembly representing their interests, not  the interest of the people who elected them into office. I want a situation, where  reserve will be the case. I can’t be in the state Assembly while the civil servants are being owning salaries and our retired people pensions are not paid, then the members of the state of assembly will be paid their salaries and allowances. Everything is not about personal interest, we can do the right thing, so that when we look back and see what we have done, we will be glad. It is not about stealing from the people and ran away.

You are contesting on the platform of the NNPP while and some think that it will be tough against political parties like People’s Democratic Party (PDP), All Progressives Congress (APC), and Young Progressive Party (YPP). They are ones in government and you are coming from private sector side ?

My co-contestants are my brothers, in regards of political differences. If of truth, all of us have the progress of our constituency at heart then it means we are all seeking to bring development to the constituency

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