Comrade Gaius N. Aham, is aspiring to be governor of Imo state on the platform People’s Redemption Party (PRP). In this interview with CYRIACUS NNAJI, he unfolds his developmental agenda if elected the next governor of the state in the 2019 general elections.
What is your motive for aspiring to be governor of Imo State?
By the special grace of God, if I am elected as the next governor of Imo state in the next general elections, my administration will reestablish the rule of law in the state. We’ll try as much as possible to ensure that the tenets of democracy are upheld in the state. Imolites will start having their full benefits as citizens of the state. For instance, my administration will pay workers salaries as at and when due. We’ll pay retirees from the state civil service all their benefits. As the governor of Imo state, I will ensure that workers receive their pay on the 26th of every month. My administration will ensure the rapid economic and infrastructural development of the 27 LGA’s in the state; Moreover, my government will invest so much in the youths – Their future will be the priority of my government.
What makes you think the PRP will win the next governorship election in the Imo state?
The People’s Redemption Party is not a party of criminals; it is not a party of self-centered individuals and politicians. Another name for the PRP is ‘integrity.’ It is one of the oldest parties in Nigeria that has the interest of the masses at heart. Our leaders and members are not corrupt – they are not looters of public funds. We don’t have members who after they are elected as legislators will divert funds meant for constituency projects to their private pockets. The governor elected on the platform of the PRP will not kill local government administration, and go forward to create community government as fourth tier of government as we have witnessed in Imo state. Rather, our administration will adhere strictly to the provisions of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (as amended) in running the government of Imo state. I am sure the electorate will readily vote for a party with such shinning credentials like the PRP.
Why do you leave APGA for PRP?
I left APGA for PRP because I found that some of our party leaders in the state were no longer walking on the path of truth and integrity. And since I didn’t want my integrity to be tainted or trampled, I left the party to join PRP. And in PRP, I am happy to say that I have identified myself with people who stand on truth – people whose word is their bond.
Before politics what work were you doing?
I studied Fine and Applied Arts, and I am still practicing my profession. I am also a public affairs consultant, and I do consult on any public affairs matter as far as it is a legitimate business.
What track record do you have in your community that will propel you to govern Imo state?
All I can tell you is that I will do better than all those who have been governor of this state. However, 13 years ago, God inspired me to form an NGO called “Peace Foundation for Democracy.” It is an organization that oversees progressive youths worldwide. So far I have received six Leadership Awards and two International Awards. I have received Leadership Award from my community, which shows that my community recognizes what I am doing to better the lot of youths. I have also received ‘Excellence Performance Award in Leadership’ from different organizations. Today, our NGO is in Asian and European countries, and we are empowering the youths to ensure they become good citizens in the countries they find themselves. We are empowering them to make sure they become useful to the society in which they find themselves. So, being a founding father of an organization that caters for the interest of Progressive Youths Worldwide, I think I am eminently qualified to govern Imo state, because youths are in the majority in Imo, and not the adults.
What is your assessment in terms of youth participating in politics?
Presently, the percentage of youths involved in politics is about 75%. Unfortunately, the so-called political godfathers of the state use these youths to rig election, carry ballot boxes during election, and also perform other anti-democratic assignments. Bu we are sensitizing them on what should be their proper role during elections. We are telling them to desist from carrying ballot boxes. We have been telling them to do away with the so-called political godfathers, because they just after their personal interests. We are telling them that we don’t believe in politics of stomach infrastructure. We have been telling the youths that the political godfathers are bent on destroying their future. And since I have come to redeem Imo state, I will ensure that the welfare of the youths will occupy a pride of place in my administration.
As a youth in government, what would the youthse of Imo expect from your administration if you become the next governor of the state
They should expect good governance which has been my watch word. The youths should expect more from me because I am a youth like them, and I know their challenges. We are in a digital world, so ICT will be everywhere in Imo state, Imo youths will be more endowed with ICT more than ever before, and their bonafide rights as citizen of Imo state will be given to them.
What impact will your administration make in the lives of Imo people?
The PRP administration in Imo state will ensure democratic governance by the youths for the youths and for all Imo people. Every community in the state will have economic value added to them, those who served the state in one way or the other will also receive their benefits duly delivered to them. Our ten-point agenda includes Restoration of value system/ priority in education, full industrialization of the state and building of craft centres, establishment of independent power projects in the state, agriculture and infrastructural renewal, welfare of farmers, provision of medical and healthcare services; Introduction of scholarships for extra brilliant youths,building a welfare state, technological and economic growth through manufacturing.