Google+ Followers

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Edo 2016: Why I Consider Myself The Most Suitable – Prof Osunbor

Edo 2016: Why I Consider Myself The Most  Suitable - Prof OsunborBeing A Statement Issued By Senator (Prof.) Oserheimen A. Osunbor On The Occasion Of His Declaration Of Intention To Contest The Edo State Governorship Election 2016 On The Platform Of All Progressives Congress
It is with great pleasure and gratitude to God that I make this public declaration today of my intention to seek my party the All Progressives Congress (APC) ticket and thereafter contest election to the Office of the Governor of Edo State in the general elections coming up later in the year.
I have been motivated and encouraged to run as a result of the popular clamour by the good people of Edo State for me to make myself available to sustain the impressive developmental strides of the Comrade Governor Adams Aliyu Oshiornhole and to re-enact the impressive performance I had established during my brief stint as Governor between 2007 and 2008.
Out of respect to the Comrade Governor who appealed that aspirants should tarry a while before commencing campaign in order not to distract him from governance, I have deliberately waited this long before publicly declaring my interest. This should now lay to rest any speculations about whether I am in the race or not.
I offer myself as an aspirant in the forthcoming elections as a man that is well known to the people of Edo State and beyond. I have built for myself over the years a reputation for excellence, integrity, hard work and a remarkable track record of achievements. I state with a deep sense of humility that I am an academician and intellectual, an outstanding legislator and law reformer with a legacy of impressive performance in governance. Throughout the length and breadth of Edo State I enjoy tremendous goodwill.
Let me make clear that I have respect for all the other aspirants in my party APC and the other political parties who seek to govern Edo State from 12th November 2016. I believe that most, if not all, may meet the minimum requirements to be governor. But Edo State deserves the best as governor. With due humility I present myself to my party leaders and delegates in particular and the people of Edo State in general as the best to fly the party flag in the general election and take over the baton-from the Comrade Governor
Permit me to state the reasons why I consider myself the most suitable. For those who do not know, let me share the following highlights about my profile.
Educational/Academic Qualifications
1. LL.B. (First Class) Honours UNN 1975 — The First Nigerian to ever do so in that faculty.
2. Best graduating student in Nigerian Law School 1976.
3. Ph.D. University of Warwick (Straight from LLB with exemption from a Master’s Degree.
4. Rhodes Scholar (Like former USA President Bill Clinton).
5. From Senior Lecturer, I became a Professor of Law with only 8 years lectureship and publications.
6. Visiting Fellow at the Queen’s University of Belfast 1986/87
7. Dean, Faculty of Law, Lagos State University 1996-1999.
Legislative Experience
1. Delegate to the Constitutional Conference 1994/95 — (Chairman Sub Committee on Population).
2. Senator of the Federal Republic of Nigeria — Held various chairmanship positions including:
a. Chairman, Senate Committee on INEC
b. Chairman, Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters
c. Chairman, several Senate Ad-hoc Committees and National Assembly Joint Committees.
d. Chairman, Sub-Committee on Legislature and Legislative List, National Assembly joint Committee on Constitution Amendment. So profound was my impact that I was nicknamed by my colleagues “Attorney General of the Senate”.
Executive Experience
1. Governor of Edo State 2008 — 2009
2. Member and later Chairman, Nigerian Law Reform Commission May 2011 March 2015.
My impressive performances as governor in all spheres are too well known that it is not necessary and indeed is impossible to enumerate them all here but suffice it to mention a few:
• Roads construction and rehabilitation across the state,
• In crease in workers’ salary twice within a year,
• State-backed access to bank loan for workers,
• Increase of subvention to educational institutions,
• Payment of bursary to students,
• Payment of gratuity and pension to retirees,
• Supply of dental equipment to general hospitals,
• Respect to traditional rulers and institutions, etc.
Edo State voters have demonstrated in the past that they vote based on the track record of performance by the candidates rather than geography or any other primordial considerations. The singsong that “only a Benin man can win” has been proved wrong in the past, notably in 2012 when a non-Benin man defeated a Benin man in a landslide. Given my track record, I am confident that APC will win by a wide margin if granted the privilege to fly the party flag as the party candidate in the election. If the delegates nominate me I cannot see any other political party being able to field a candidate who can match my record. When the campaign starts we shall unveil our detailed programme of action and vision for Edo State, located within the general ambit of the APC manifesto.
Ladies and gentlemen, I am not unmindful of arguments about which senatorial zone’s turn it is to produce the next governor. I believe that this is a legitimate issue to raise in order to ensure fairness, equity and justice amongst the component parts of the state i.e. Edo South, Edo Central and Edo North. Nevertheless, I want to be assessed based on my antecedents and record of performance rather than simply on arguments based on zoning.
All my working life I have assisted and touched the lives of people across the three senatorial districts. From Lecturer to Professor at the University of Lagos and Lagos State University, I assisted Edo State students to gain admission irrespective of the senatorial district they come from. This is verifiable. As Senator, my doors were open to persons from Edo South and Edo North including Edo Central that I represented) and I assisted them without discrimination even when they could not reach their own Senators. Specifically, I influenced and assisted Presidential nominees from Edo South and Edo North to get Senate confirmation of their appointments, when their Senators were unavailable, inaccessible or refused to help them. I will respect their privacy by not mentioning names. Many of such beneficiaries remain grateful to me till date. As governor I spread development projects across Edo North, Edo Central and Edo South and all the benefiting communities remain grateful to me till date. It is this show of appreciation across the State that propels me to run. As they say, one good turn deserves another.
The other issue that I have heard raised against me is that I am new in APC because I allegedly joined after the Presidential election on 28th March 2015. This is far from the truth. It is a well-known fact that I parted ways with PDP after the manipulated primaries of February 2012. Thereafter, I supported and campaigned for the Comrade Governor in the July 2012 governorship election. I openly supported and campaigned for the ACN candidates in the Local Government Council elections in 2013. Before the 2015 general elections I hosted a series of meeting with APC leaders in my Senatorial District and especially my LGA and ward. I provided financial support and campaigned for APC on NTA lruekpen and NTA Benin, the week BEFORE the elections. Prior to this, I had been issued my APC membership card in my ward. What the public witnessed at the rally in Ekpoma on Tuesday 7th April 2015 was the governor formally welcoming and receiving me into the party. This should not be misconstrued as the day I joined the party. I was already a card-carrying member of APC from my ward when I appeared on TV, campaigning for the party candidates BEFORE the election. There must be many here who watched me on television campaigning before the election. You should help put the record straight. It is wrong to group me along with those who joined after the election.
Finally, let me emphasize the point that modern governance is complex and requires a multi-dimensional approach by a leader with vast experience. The in-coming governor will be stepping in at a period of declining statutory allocations from the Federation Account occasioned by the drastic fall in the price of crude oil. This will test the ability of the in-coming governor for financial creativity and, above all, prudence in the management of lean resources. I affirm that I possess the qualities needed to lead Edo State at this point in time. Happily, this is in tune with the Comrade Governor’s own thinking as to the attributes of the person to succeed him.
I will end this address by appealing very strongly to His Excellency the Comrade Governor, my party leaders and delegates that the choice they make during the primaries will determine whether Edo people will enjoy good governance or bad governance post 2016. Your future and that of generations yet unborn lie in your hands. Do not settle for less when you can have the best. Avoid “Had I known”.
Thank you and may God bless you, God bless Edo State and God bless Nigeria.
Oba gha to okpe-e, Ise!

No comments:

Post a Comment