AN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH DCN. PATRICK AHONKHAI GIWA, A FOREMOST ASPIRANT OF THE PEOPLE’S DEMOCRATIC PARTY, PDP, FOR HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, OWAN FEDERAL CONSTITUENCY

AN EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH DCN. PATRICK AHONKHAI GIWA, A FOREMOST ASPIRANT OF THE PEOPLE’S DEMOCRATIC PARTY, PDP, FOR HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, OWAN FEDERAL CONSTITUENCY

Mr Patrick Ahonkhai Giwa is an aspirant for the House of Representatives, Owan Federal Constituency, Edo state on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party ( PDP). Mr Giwa recently retired from the service of the National Assembly as Clerk of the House of Representatives after 35 years of meritorious service to the nation. During the period of his civil service career, he influenced numerous projects to his community as well as assisted a great number of his constituents to secure gainful Federal employment. In this interview with our correspondent, Mr Giwa gives reasons why he is aspiring to represent his people in the Green Chamber.
Excerpt:

Why are you running for the position of House of Representatives, despite the clamour for the youths to take over leadership?

It is good for the youths to aspire to take over leadership or governance of our country at various levels, but the youths should be reverential by accommodating the elderly who have the capacity and experience to bring about quality Representation. They should also be prepared to patiently learn from the wealth of experience of the elders because, the business of law making is a serious one and very technical. My experience in the cause of my work in the National Assembly has shown that senior members are more serious with legislative business than the younger ones. For example, during consideration of bills, which most times form the last business of a legislative day, the members you see in the chamber are the more elderly ones, the younger ones are most of the times not patient enough to wait till the end of sitting in the house.

If you are elected, can you move a bill to scrap the wastages in the system that pays people a large sum of money when they don’t work for it?

National Assembly is where there is least wastage in government compared to what we see with executive bodies during our scrutiny of government agencies. In fact, the National Assembly is grossly underfunded and therefore cannot afford to waste it’s meagre resources
With regards to remuneration of law makers, it is uncomplimentary to say that members take large sums of money which they don’t work for. The salary and allowances of lawmakers in Nigeria are hugely infinitesimal when compared to those of ministers and head of government agencies. Moreover, the legislative work is one of the most tedious and most hazardous of all professions.

What is your take on reverting to Unicameral legislature in order to minimize the cost of governance?

A bi- cameral legislature, that is, having two legislative Chambers is still the best for our country. The wisdom of a two chamber legislature is to guarantee quality of our laws. If an error slips through one chamber in the process of law making, the other chamber fine-tunes it, thereby ensuring the quality of the overall end product of the law.

What bill will you send to the National Assembly to Curtail the excesses of this menace of killing in the south and North by the Fulani’s ?

I am doing a study on how to improve security in our country. However, I think the best way to approach the problem of security is for government to set up a committee of security agencies, with representatives from the religious, traditional, professional and other relevant institutions and bodies, to look into the issues of security in our country and make recommendations to help government act more decisively before the problem overwhelms us. Again, our borders should be properly guarded and patrolled. From testimonies of people who have encountered these killers, many of them are not Nigerians. We should nevertheless, appreciate the efforts of the government to tackle this hydra headed problem.

What do you have in mind to do for the people in terms of youths and women Empowerment, do you have special bills for the disabled?

The reason for my aspiration for the house of Representatives is to bring my wealth of experience to bear on the law making process and improve the quality of our laws. I will also use my full knowledge of the National Assembly and the federal administrative system to build on my previous achievements of providing gainful employment, building capacity and empowering the youths and women as well as influencing development projects to my constituency.
Let it be made known to the public that my aspiration is people inspired and People driven. My people: youths, women, Owan Citizens in diaspora, e.t.c all mobilized me into the race because they believe if I have done so much for the people as a civil servant, I will do more when they send me to the National Assembly to represent them.
Many are not interested in the party I belong. They only ask ‘Awon janre” ( has he been brought out) to contest?
Although i face stiff opposition left and right, I am fine, with God on my side, I will emerge as my party’s flag bearer to the House of Representatives.
The love for my people and zeal to serve them runs in my veins.
I am introducing a new model of service of love, truth, sincerity, integrity, fairness and justice. This is a total liberation for Owan people.

Now, coming to your other question, I am gathering information as to the best way to support this set of Nigerians who deserve immerse support. I want to add that there are sufficient laws that covers every aspect of our national life. The problem is implementation and obedience to these laws. Nigerians do not want to Obey law, right from the leadership to the least person in the society.
We have made amendments to our Constitution to the extent that it has become a textbook, just within 23years of the practice of democracy in the country, whereas the American constitution has just a few leaves after over 230 years of it’s existence with just 27 amendments.

Finally, Nigeria is not a united Country. So many things are dividing us and we must collectively fight to bring our Nation together before it is too late. My major assignment if elected into the house is, to work on a bill that will bring about a lasting unity in our country. The bill will address the leadership question in Nigeria. We must device a system that will work for us. The Swiss adopted a model of yearly rotational leadership between seven (7) persons – a system that works for them. Today, Switzerland is the most peaceful and most stable Country in the world. My bill will address how leadership can rotate at the Federal, State, Local Government and Ward levels. Once we achieve this, the type of avoidable tension, acrimony and bad blood we generate each time there is election in our Country will become a thing of the past.

What camp do you belong since your party is divided in Edo State ?

I don’t belong to any camp. The PDP is a family. I have given my advice on the need to settle this matter before the election and will continue to do so. Once this crisis is resolved, we are sure to trounce any party in the 2023 elections.