BY SUNNY A. DAVID
The Member representing the Ndokwa Ukwuani Federal Constituency at the National House of Representatives, Rt. Hon. Dr. Ossai Nicholas Ossai says Nigeria has not made much progress because she has abandoned true federalism for unitary system of government.
The Lawmaker who played host to executive members of the Ndokwa Chapel of the Association of Proprietors of Private Media Establishment of Nigeria (APPMEN) in Kwale, Ndokwa West Local Government Area, Delta State argued that for Nigeria to make expected progress, the centre must devolve power and allow the component units or States to generate their revenues and contributes to the centre.
“I believe Nigeria can do well if she embraces true federalism. When Nigeria was operating regional governments the nation was doing well and prospering in all facets.
“I called on President Muhammadu Buhari to ensure that he leaves a legacy of giving Nigeria true federalism.”
Hon. Ossai noted that he has made tremendous progress in the 9th assembly in legislative process having passed no fewer than 30 bills, saying he has also ensure that his constituency got it share of funds in the 2020 budget to tackle critical infrastructures in the three local government areas he is representing.
According to him, “I don’t think my constituents will be surcharge again because I have been able to put in N800 million for the stepping down of electricity from the Independent Power Project IPP at Okpai, and for compensation for right of ways for the people.”
He appealed to communities to take ownership of various government projects in their areas by ensuring their management, maintenence and protections, noting that communities should work out modalities to take care of the maintenance of various constituency projects since government hardly allocate funds for maintenance.
“I have attracted seven primary health care centres in various communities fully completed but the Local Government Councils have refused to acquire them.
“This discourages ones effort. The councils have many avenues they can generates funds but instead they chose to be docile and wait for monthly allocation from federal government.”
He called on the local government to focus on their core areas of mandates just as he challenged the council chairmen and those aspiring to the councils to change their mentalities and be driven by passion to serve.
“In so many local government areas no cemetery, no abattoir, no motor park which are their core functions and also to generates funds, the local government chairmen are not focused.
“Different levels of governance should function effectively so as to reduce the preasure at the centre.
On the issue of local government autonomy, the lawmaker argued that the state government should take charge of local government and streamline its law and ensure that they are effective, insisting that the councils should be manned by focused individuals.
“People should be allow to go for free and fair election. A focused person must take up an issue of development and address them squarely, people should stop politicising issues of development.”
On the Federal Polytechnic, Kwale bill, Hon. Ossai noted that within few months of the 9th Assembly, he was able to initiate a bill to that effect which was passed by the house of representatives and transmitted same to the Senate on 12th December 2020.
According to him, “I have done my job, very soon i will address the press to question the Senate why they have not passed the bill.
“However, I have appealed to Governor Ifeanyi Okowa to establish the Institute of Industrial Technology, Kwale which was enacted by the defunct Bendel State and is yet to be repealed, noting that when established it will carter for the skill manpower in various fields.”
The Lawmaker, promised to reach out to the incoming executive body of the Ndokwa Neku Union NNU, to address the twin issues of oil production quantum and another state constituency in Ndokwa area.
“I have a duty to ensure that Ndokwa people are well protected and to ensure that their interests and aspirations are actualise. I have passed 30 bills and 56 bills in the 9th and 8th assembly respectively, this time I will ensure that my people get infrastructures.”
The Lawmaker, however, expressed satisfaction on the developmental strides of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa, saying the governor has not been found deficit in any sector.