All Progressives Congress (APC) governorship aspirant in Ekiti State Chief Muyiwa Olumilua spoke with ODUNAYO OGUNMOLA in Ado-Ekiti, the state capital, on his mission in politics and the blueprint for the development of the state.
What are you vying for governor?
I am Michael Olumuyiwa Olumilua; I was born on 23rd January 1969 to the family of Evangelist Bamidele Isola Olumilua, the former Governor of old Ondo State and Mrs. Theresa Gbesi Olumilua in Ikoyi, Lagos. I started my primary education at St. Charles’ Hultz School, Ottawa, Canada before proceeding to United Nations International School, Manhattan, New York, United States. I also had a stint at Our Lady of Apostles School, Herbert Macaulay, Yaba, Lagos before finishing my primary education at Omolere Nursery and Primary School, Akure, Ondo State where I was awarded the prize of being the best pupil in the statewide Ondo State Primary Schools Competitive Examination in 1979. I was admitted to Federal Government College, Idoani, Ondo State on National Merit for my secondary education.I attended Ondo State University (now Ekiti State University) where I bagged a B.Sc (Hons) in Estate Management in 1990 where I also obtained a master’s degree in Business Administration (specialising in Finance) in 1998. I had my National Youth Service in Sokoto State and at the conclusion of my service year, I joined the firm of Alonge, Ogunmoyero and Co. Estate Surveyors and Valuers, Ikeja, Lagos as an Estate Surveyor. I am currently Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of Keshlink Investment Limited, Real McCoy Energy and Principal Partner at Muiwa Olumilua and Associates, a form of Estate Surveyors, Facility Managers and Auctioneers.
What of other responsibilities and political offices you held in the past?
I am the current President, Certified Institute of Auctioneers, Nigeria (CIAN) Abuja Chapter, a member of International Facility Managers Association (IFMA), Houston, Texas, United States. I was appointed a UNESCO Ambassador in 2016. Pertaining to my political experience, I was appointed a Senior Special Assistant on Project Monitoring to the Governor during the tenure of Dr. Kayode Fayemi between 2010 and 2012 and later as Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Integration and Intergovernmental Relations between 2012 and 2014.
Why are you in the governorship race?
I believe I can do it and turn around the fortunes of our dear state for good and I believe that the APC is the right vehicle to achieve that objective. But we have to bring sanity into the system because governorship is not a thing of a joke. This is a project we have to take with all seriousness because before you can vie for this type of office, there are some criteria you must meet. One of the reasons for the decline in the lives of our people is that we have not been choosing rightly. But it is unfortunate today that governorship is now for the highest bidders; it is the richest that win party tickets and governorship seats which are not supposed to be. It was not so during my father’s time as governor unlike now that if you don’t have up to close to a billion Naira, you cannot run for such an elective position.
What in your opinion, should be the criteria to select governorship candidates?
Let us always look at the quality of persons coming out, let us look at their experience, quality, pedigree and programmes and everybody must submit to party supremacy. We must put our party on a strong footing to win the next election so that there can be consistency and stability in governance. When we select the right candidate and our party wins, I believe that with the diligent implementation of party manifesto and quality policies, our party will remain in power for a long time and there will be stability in government. Lagos State, for example, has been ruled by members of the same political family for the past eighteen years.
What is your agenda for the development of Ekiti State if you become the next Governor of Ekiti State?
I have an eight-point agenda for the development of Ekiti State which I have envisioned to give our people a new lease of life. The first one is Development and Empowerment of the Youth, the need for youth empowerment is critical to the future of Ekiti. Our planned programme of action will improve their access to resources that will enhance their knowledge, skills and attitude. Our planned line of action also includes making capital available to youths that have business ideas. Development of Rural and Urban Area Infrastructure is the second agenda on our manifesto. Infrastructure goes beyond opening up and construction of roads. Though we intend to invest massively in the areas of road construction and rehabilitation, we intend to take infrastructural development some steps further. Rural development presents opportunities for economic essentials in forms of goods and services that cannot be generated in an urban context. Number three is Education Sector Resuscitation and Advancement; we are strong advocates of the return of our public schools to what used to exist in years past. We will reintroduce skills and crafts and student apprenticeship, in order to ensure that graduates at secondary school level are empowered with skills for contributing to society’s good.
Our Agenda Four is Agriculture mechanisation and Agro-Allied Industry. Ekiti, as we all know, is an agrarian society but is a pity that Ekiti can hardly feed its people successfully, not to talk of having enough for trade with other states. Agro-business professionals and global investors will be attracted to the state through an incentive programme to be unveiled. Our Agenda Five is Maternal and General Healthcare which is predicated on the need to give our women and children the support they need at critical moments and by extension, give the families more healthcare reliefs. Generally, a major focus in healthcare delivery is a self-sustaining healthcare system that will serve not only Ekiti State but will serve neighbouring states as a viable means of revenue generation as well. Others on our development agenda are Bridging the Gender Gap, Innovation, ICT and Technology Development and lastly, Growth in the Areas of Technical Skills and Artisans Development.
You are from Ekiti South Senatorial District which is clamouring to occupy the governorship seat. What is your take on this agitation?
Agitations are allowed in a democracy and democracy involves consensus building. Although aspirants from all zones that are qualified are free to vie for the governorship seat, the fact that nobody from Ekiti South has occupied the office since the state was created in 1996 is fuelling the agitation his time around. Ekiti South has quality aspirants, illustrious sons who are eminently qualified to be governor. But, we are not folding our arms expecting that power will be served to us like that. For the sake of equity, justice and fair play, Ekiti South should produce the next governor I have been selling the manifesto of the party and my eight-point agenda to party delegates and members and the result has been positive. I believe I am qualified to be governor and I believe that by the grace of God, I will win my party’s ticket and ultimately the governorship seat. This is about our people who have been suffering in the hands of a rudderless government for the past three years. I am here to bring succour to our people through my agenda and the South will make history this time around through my humble self. I will serve my people diligently and with Muyiwa Olumilua as Governor, Ekiti future is assured, Ekiti will be in trusted hands.
Source: The Nation