The complex politics in Nigeria, especially at the national level, requires high level strategic permutations, if not, you continue to lose serially.
First, as a legislator, if you are in alignment with the national ruling political party, you stand a good chance to put up an outstanding outing.
Second, if you are well exposed to the dynamics of the interconnectivity between the pubic and the private sectors, it’s also a veritable advantage. This is because, the smartest people in the system are found in the private sector hence, you need to know how they operate to be able to deal with their intrigues.
Moreover, if it’s your first appearance and as such a novice, before you finally have a grasp of what goes on in that ‘big house’ in Abuja, you’re almost on the verge of exiting the place.
It’s however interesting to know that some distinctive hallmarks that make for a result-oriented legislator in the current Nigerian legislature has more to do with one’s level of education, wealth of experience and successes in pre-political career. These are irresistible frontline forces that give strong backing to bargaining prowess in any legislative house. Armed with these in the kitty, including personal charisma, confidence level, especially when coming from an ethnic minority is never deflated by any opposing contender when pushing for your constituency entitlements.
Now, Distinguished Senator Jibrin Isah (Echocho), is an undeniable spectacle of the forgoing non-negotiable elements needed to pull own portion at the Red Legislative Chamber. Currently he serves as the Vice-Chairman Senate Committee on Finance. What does that tell us: a prospective chairman in the nearest future. A position that should never be traded for any home-grown parochial consideration at all.
For people who do not know, Finance Committee is an ‘Octopus’ Committee. A mother of all committees that cuts across all government ministries, departments and agencies in Nigeria. Hence, the Chairman can make placement for anything, anywhere in this country.
The question is: what are the major common needs or demands of almost all constituents? Two things conspicuously stand out; employments/appointments on the one hand, and contracts on the other hand.
The strategy now is, all hands in Kogi East must be on deck to ensure the return of Echocho back to the Senate if the volume of the sound “Omawe de” cliche among our teaming youths is to reduce considerably.
You can correctly guess what it means for contractors from Kogi East to have unfettered access to so many government contracts in Abuja. You could also guess with a high sense of accuracy the feeling it brings that in all spheres of government in this big country, we have our own son who has power to disapprove their budgets unless he is given slots to employ his people. That’s the strategic move that we all must make, going forward; more so that our influence at the state level has waned pathetically.
One other abhorrent and very troubling record that Kogi East has created is our repulsive penchant for changing senators in the National Assembly. For instance, while we have churned out eight (8) senators since the beginning of the 4th republic, our neighbour-Kogi West has had only three (3) senators. That record of inconsistency, like a plague, has to be avoided at all costs this time.
Therefore, as one who has gained requisite expertise in Development Politics and with deep understanding of the Game Theory of politics, it’s become imperative to make this appeal to our people-stakeholders and none stakeholders alike, that in this game, understanding Strategy and the best way to deploy it makes one gain big from every political system. We must not lose out again going forward.
God bless Kogi East Senatorial District and grant us the needed unity and development through understanding.
– Enejoh Solomon Ojotu
Centre For Democracy and Leadership Development,