OYO FEDERAL LAWMAKERS UNFOLD AGENDA
National Assembly members from Oyo State- Senator Ayoola Hosea Agboola, Senator Femi Lanlehin and Abiodun Awoleye spoke with Daily Sun on their agenda for their constituencies and the nation as the seventh national legislative session kicks off.
More jobs, my priority -Agboola
Agboola (PDP Oyo North Senatorial District), identifies solving the crisis of unemployment as his major priority in the Senate. To achieve this, he hopes to work in concert with colleagues to restore stable electricity supply back to the country. According to him if power generation is at its optimal, this would revive industries, turn the economy around and create more jobs for the army of school leavers and graduates.
The senator plans to use the instrumentality of legislation and oversight functions to boost agriculture particularly in the South West where he comes from: 'I have found that although we have river basins in the south, they are under-utilized and this accounts for the seasonal crisis of food shortage and exorbitant prices of agricultural commodities as well as dependence on other parts of the country. We must change this by going back to the land. Irrigation farming will be encouraged.'
Another issue of concern to Agboola is security. He planned to sponsor bills to strengthen law enforcement agencies to deter crimes such as kidnapping and robbery, as a way of attracting foreign investments into the country.
Corruption must be rooted out -Lanlehin
Lanlehin (ACN Oyo South Senatoerial District), says his primary concern would be how to assist the Federal Government which he though noted to be conservative, turn around the economy for the better. He listed tackling the endemic corruption in governance, unemployment and unstable power among the areas that will receive his priority attention in terms of proposed legislations and networking among National Assembly members.
According to him, 60 per cent of the nation's problems would be solved if government could immediately solve the energy crisis as this would jump start activities in the productive sector of the economy:
'This will check unemployment that has given rise to all manners of problems such as robbery, kidnapping, militancy and the 'area boy' Syndrome', he noted, adding: 'The cost of production'll also go down and we will be able to compete with foreign companies, whose products are dumped on us here. 'Year in year out, money is voted into rehabilitation and building of roads, yet, we still have the worst road network in Africa, in contrast to the huge investments. Look at the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, it is the busiest road in the country, coming directly from the ports, but it is a death trap; ditto for Enugu-Owerri and the Benin-Ore-Sagamu roads.
'So, in confirming ministers, I believe that as a start, the portfolios should be included, particularly as regards the ministries that are fundamental to the economy such as works, petroleum, industry and power, so we can put round pegs in round holes. I want to believe the present crop of our people in the National Assembly are there to serve, because they have been elected by the people, as against the past, where people rigged themselves into office.
'Over the years, we have noticed collusion of the executive and legislative for their selfish interests. Now, oversight functions should really be oversight functions, not the beg and give situation we've seen in the past. The ministries should be made to stand on their toes, budgets should be all the time looked into to ensure they are adhered to and implemented to the benefit of the people. The executive must be driven to really work for the people and the country.'
I'm for green environmenmt -Awoleye
Awoleye (ACN Member, House of Representatives, Ibadan North Federal Constituency), says besides providing vibrant opposition to ensure the ruling party does the wishes of Nigerians, he intends sponsoring a bill that will make it mandatory for every house owner to green up his surroundings. 'I hope it will be a condition for approval of building plans' he told Daily Sun.
Also, he believes the health facilities in the country are ill-equipped and the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) not well articulated enough. He plans to initiate bills and motions, which would compel even local governments to provide adequate health services to the people.
Awoleye says he is going to champion the cause of some professional bodies, notably, Association of Nigerian Theatre Practitioners and Video Rental operators, in fulfillment of electoral promises he made to them.
For instance, he said the two groups had complained of multiple taxation whereby, the producers of the works were taxed, wile the video-rental operators too share in the tax burden: 'I intend sponsoring bills to protect the practitioners and the industry itself.'