So, when Hon. Tobun Abiodun was awarded a chieftaincy title of Otunba Apesin of Ketu Kingdom in Epe Area of the state by His Royal Majesty (HRM) Oba Adegboyega Adefowora (JP) recently, it was agreed that he is a man of the people, who has given good accounts of himself over the years.
The lawmaker, who is from Epe Constituency 2, is sure of contesting in 2015 all things being equal and he is proud to say that he has done his bit for his people.
Hon. Tobun, who is the Chairman of House Committee on Environment, spoke on national issues and also used the opportunity of the interview to eulogise his political godfather, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, who he described as a leader of leaders and a man, whose popularity keeps growing after leaving office as a public officer.
What is your view on the 70% voting formula adopted at the on-going constitutional conference in Abuja?
I feel the old method of 2/3 majority is okay, this is used world over and our own should not be an exception. 2/3 majority suffice, we should not choose another formula in attending to issues bothering on national development. There are some issues that require simple majority or 2/3 majority, but they are now putting it at upper limit, I think this is wrong. It might lead to anarchy; simple majority is even better, but 70% or above might not be realizable easily.
Do you expect that the on-going constitutional conference would give us something better as a country?
I don’t want to be a pessimist, but the constitutional conference is not necessary at this time, especially, when we have a National Assembly. What is the essence of the constitutional conference, when their decisions would still be subject to the approval of the National Assembly? I don’t see anything meaningful coming out of the conference at this time. I think it is a strategy adopted by some people to either prolong themselves in office or cause disharmony within the system. The selection is so poor; the delegates were single handedly picked by some elements. The people in the National Assembly were elected by the people to represent them, they were democratically elected, even those whose elections were rigged have been removed by courts of competent jurisdiction, while the real winners were put there. If we want a constitutional conference, it should have been a sovereign national conference, where people would elect those they want to determine their future and that of the country and that should not be done towards the end of tenure of somebody.
There was an attack at SSS Headquarters in Abuja recently and there have been crisis in the northern part of the country, as elections are coming, how do you see the whole development?
With due respect to the President, it seems he is taking this issue of security with kids glove, this thing started like a child’s play, it has now blown to a full scale terrorism and it seems the Federal Government has no solution to it and the terrorists are now taking it to their doorsteps. They have attacked military formations, they have attacked police stations, they have attacked NNPC office and others, may be their next target is Aso Rock in Abuja. They have attacked Governors’ convoys, schools premises, this shows security lapses. Our security operatives ought to have a method to deal with these people; these are internal strife, what of if it was to be external aggression for God sake. The Boko Haram sect has recruited so many people, they have more sophisticated weapons and equipments to circumvent our security operatives. That means something is going wrong, if it were to be in advanced world, the President would have thrown in the towel, but rather, we see them perpetuating themselves in office and they still want to go back to power in 2015.
The leader of your party, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu recently celebrated his birthday, as one of his followers, what do you have to say?
My own would be in form of prayers, I pray that Almighty Allah spares his life to lead us more. He is a selfless leader, he is a leader, who is forthright, he has the love and interest of people at heart, and love for the country. He is a leader that is ready to sacrifice; he is a leader of leaders. I am not sentimental about him; but I will say he is a special breed like his name (Akanbi). You have people like him once in a generation; he is a leader that God has bestowed on our generation. He is the man that lives above common standard; he is articulate, very intelligent, vocal, bold and a cheerful giver. I pray that God would spare his life to be able to lead us further. He is someone that does not believe in mediocrity, whether you are there or not, he would do the right thing, and with him, you must perform because he believes your legacy either favours you is against you, he believes in good legacy. He advises us to do our best and leave the rest. A lot of people, when they leave power, their popularity go down, but he keeps waxing stronger. We love him, not that he is giving us money like that, but he has been a wonderful man over the years. He enjoys larger followers because he believes in what he stands for, which is why we believe he is the leader of all time.
You are about to celebrate your 51st birthday, how do you feel and what is your plan for the coming elections?
I celebrated my 50th birthday last year, which was my first time of celebrating birthday. Not that I don’t believe in it, but I believe that as you are celebrating your birthday, you are moving closer to your grave. So, you must be able to look at how far you have been able to impact on the lives of people. I thank God that I have been able to contribute my own quota to human capital development in my area. I look forward to 60 or 70 years of age to mark them with ceremonies. This year I would celebrate in a low key, call our spiritual leaders to pray for me and my family.
Yes, the elections are coming up, the leadership of the party and the people in position of authority are doing their best to further promote our party, the APC. We will take over at the centre and in more states; the leadership of the party has given me a nod for a second term of office. I thank my party men too, everybody supports me, so far, no opposition known to me has come out of the APC in Epe Constituency 1, this shows sign of acceptability. It is an indication that reward of good work is more work.
Can we say your being made a chief in Ketuland recently is an endorsement of your second term?
God is wonderful, He will not come from heaven to endorse me, He would send people, if the obas are endorsing me, like I was made Alakoso in Epe to co-ordinate the activities of the people, I was made Otunba Apesin of Ketuland in Epe Area 2, that is a sign of endorsement. I am from Epe 1, where they gave me Apesin in Epe 2. I thank them because they appreciate us and they want us to continue what we are doing. I thank Alaketu of Ketuland, His Royal Majesty (HRM) Oba Adegboyega Adefowora (JP), for the chieftaincy title.
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