I am in the race to make Ondo state great again- Falana
Mrs Olamide Falana, an activist and governorship candidate of the Democratic Peoples’ Party (DPP), in this interview with Nigerian Concord speaks on her ambition and plans for the people of Ondo state as governor of the state. Excerpts:
Can I know whom Mrs Olamide Falana is?
Mrs Olamide Falana is an indigene of Ondo state from igbobini, Ese Ondo local government to be precised. She is a social entrepreneur who has many years in social services. She is a wife and mother of almost 10 years. She is a Christian, a Catholic to be precised. She is somebody who is passion-driven, someone who believes so much in the dream for a better Ondo state. She also believes that is about time we will actually need good leadership in Ondo state.
Can you tell us why you are in this race or let me say are u a serious candidate?
I don’t know what you mean by serious candidate because I doubt if there is any candidate who is not serious. But for me, I believe that I am in this race to win. I am in the race to make Ondo state great again. I’m in this race because I have a lot of things I know I can contribute in developing my state, I believe I can move Ondo state from where it is to where it ought to be, I believe so much for a dream for Ondo state which is a place where the sunshine is even brighter, not scorching sun alone on a lighter note. Those are the dreams I have, and those are the reasons I have and those are the reasons I’m deeming it fit to contest to be governor of the state.
There is a belief that most of the candidates are working for some candidates, to stand down for them before the election. How true is that and are you part of them?
I am not part of such dirty agreement. I also heard the insinuation that most of the candidates are even working for APC and they want to step down for Aketi. That is the work of rumour mongers. They will just peddle what they want and push it around, so I don’t see any truth in what they have said and as such there is no way you will not have rumours in a political season. In fact, most of the candidates in other parties actually moved out of PDP or moved out of APC, but that is not to say that anybody wants to jettison his/her own dream, vision and ambition for another person. What for? For what gain? I see it as rumour , rumour can be peddle definitely until the day of election, there will always be rumour and there will always be rumour mongers , that is just part of the politics
You said you are a serious contender so can you tell us your efforts to boost your chance of winning?
Thanks. We have been in the media, I have posters out, I have had press releases. I have my advertorials in various media every week. Although, I may not have come from a big party because party also determine a lot of things, that is not to say that I’m not working, I’m working and I will continue to work
Is your party taking the advantage of the crises in most of the major parties now?
We are intensifying our grassroot campaign at this moment, reaching out to most women, youths and various groups in the state. In our own way, we are actually getting salient reasons why they should vote for DPP. And of course everybody takes advantage of the crises that the big parties have. There is crisis in the APC, there is crisis in PDP likewise AD, that is to say that it could actually be a blessing to some of these smaller parties. We are taking advantage, we are intensifying our work, we are in every places and I know God will crown out effort to success.
But Ondo state is a very serious and critical state in this country, how do you think a woman can be a governor of this state?
Well, if a woman could contest in another state and gave a good contest until the power that be prevented her…
(Cuts in) But non has ever won
Yes, none has ever won but for me, I believe that I have a state that is actually in my support. At the moment you people are already tired of the same set of old people we have had for a long time. The women are tired of the exclusion that we have at the moment which will continue if we do not have a woman there, someone like me. So lots of groups are already tired of the status quo at the moment, people are not happy with the way of things in this state.
As a woman, what are your plans for women when you eventually become governor?
I am a good advocate of women empowerment. I stand for women’s contribution in governance. I believe that women should not be restricted to the kitchen and the other room alone. As governor, I will carry out all the women in this state. I will make them stake-holders in the affairs of the state because their roles in governance is indispensable.
What of government workers and the youths. What do you have in stock for them?
I really feel for the civil servants in this state as a result of their poor condition. I wonder why workers should be owed their wages. Even the Holy Bible says that one shouldn’t allow the sweat of labourers to dry off before their wages are paid. I will make sure that their salaries are paid as at when due. As for the youths, I will ensure that they are duly empowered so that no politician will have any excuse to lure them into social vices. Youths won’t be idled under my administration because it is only an idle hand that devil uses as its instrument.