Restructuring Along The Lines Of True Federalism Inevitable – Waive

Waive

Revd. Francis Ejiroghene Waive is the General Overseer of Church of the Anointing, Warri, Delta State and Executive Director Riverine Communities Health Organization (RIVCHO) an NGO. In this interview with Sunday Apah, he spoke on the recent call by members of the Committee of Graduates of Ambrose Ali University, AAU, Ekpoma, Edo State for him to contest for the Ughelli North/Ughelli South/Udu Federal Constituency, the activities of RIVCHO as it affects the Niger Delta communities and other issues of public interest. Excerpts:

There are agitations from some quarters for restructuring of Nigeria as the solution to the country’s present predicament, what is your take on this?

Restructuring the country along the lines of true fiscal federalism is inevitable. As someone from a minority tribe I know that division of the nation is not in our collective interest. War is also not an option. We must continue to dialogue until we achieve justice and equity.

See also: Those Against Restructuring Are Enemies Of Nigeria

Some persons see President Muhammadu Buhari as not capable to rule Nigeria, hence the hardship ravaging the country, do you subscribe to this?

Age and health are not on the side of Mr. President. He should do the needful. Those using his position despite the obvious situation do not love this country and should be sanctioned.

What do suggest as the way out of the present recession?

Better economic management of scarce resources. The present team managing our economy has failed. We need a team that is bipartisan, knowledgeable and truly patriotic.

A group, Committee of Graduates of Ambrose Ali University has been on the news urging you to contest for the Ughelli North/Ughelli South/Udu Federal Constituency, what is your response to this call?

I am in prayers about this and presently consulting leaders in the three local government areas that make up the constituency. I will not hesitate to heed the call if this process confirms the need. I am grateful that our people find me worth of service.

How do you intend to combine both politics and clergy work, knowing fully well that politics is a dirty game?

I am not aware that politics is a dirty game. I only know that the present players in Nigeria play it dirty.  To me being a clergyman is community service hence my ministry has impacted thousands of lives with the gospel, education, health care, business and through my NGO Riverine Communities Health Organization (RIVCHO).

So I see no challenge in marrying two community service vehicles. I am called to serve my people and that is what I will do. I will do politics differently from what people are used to. We shall set a standard that shall become a benchmark. And when we get to office, transparency will be such that we will need no marketing.

Is RIVCHO your brainchild and what brought about its formation?

It was formed by the Church of the Anointing not mine because as a church we started reaching out to people with medications and try to plant churches where there are no churches because we believe the gospel is the only solution to the Niger Delta problems. So as a church we were using medical mission to reach the Niger Delta and in the process we realize that we need to do separate accounting from that of the church. That was why we registered the Riverine Communities Health Organization with the aim of reaching out to the Niger Delta on medications, capacity building workshops, community development and so on. So it came out of the church.

What are your achievements so far?

We have reach out to so many communities in Delta, Edo and Bayelsa states. In Delta we have reached out to every community in Gbaramatu and Mein Kingdom, in Bayelsa state we have gone to Ekeremor, Torugbere, Peretorou, Angala-Biri and others. Today we are known all over the riverine communities. In some of those communities we put rain water harvesting system and they are all in operation.

Some of them we give free medical care to them. While some of them we involved them in capacity building workshop. We also provided water borehole in some communities like, Ukpokiti and Oteghelle communities in Warri South Local Government Area. We built public toilets in places like Bikorogha community in Burutu Local Government Area and many other communities in Patani Local Government Area.

Under which party do you intend to contest and what is your relationship with leaders of the party?

I am still in prayers and consultations about the political platform. But I can assure you that I relate well with all across the political divide. My election shall be such that party loyalty will not be an issue as people from all political parties will vote for me.

See also: Restructuring: Which Way For Nigeria?

If you win, what do you intend to do for your constituents?

First, all my constituents will have unfettered access to me and these programmes and activities of the federal government. Secondly, I will attend sittings without fail. My people will see me in the House, hear my voice clear and loud, and have me champion their causes both those of individuals, communities and the entire constituency. The era when no one speaks for us will be over with my presence in the house.

Thirdly, I will provide my constituents, consistently the linkage with Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the federal government for employment and business. Fourthly I will capture the infrastructural needs of my people and ensure they are listed in the budget even before it is presented yearly on the floor of the house.

I will lobby the executive arm of government to achieve this and then my colleagues to ensure my projects are passed. Fifth, I will be sponsoring relevant bills that will improve the life of my people. Sixth my constituency projects will be traceable, visible, valuable and useful to our people. I can go on and on. I am passionate about whatever I do. I will not fail our people.

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Author: Sunday Apah