Between 2016 and now, HON DAVID AJOBIEWE; a Civil Engineering icon from Korowa Quarters, Oka-Akoko in Akoko South West Local Government area of Ondo State has empowered over 7000 thousand people in his locality and has also won them to his party, the All Progressives Congress, APC. He is in the race of clinching the APC ticket ahead of the house of assembly primary election slated for the 2nd of October. In this interview, he speaks on how he is giving his community the midas touch in development as well as his ambition
*HOW DID YOU BECOME A MEMBER OF THE APC?*
I used to be in AD and then to PDP and now APC. While in AD, I championed Akoko South west liberation front which launched the party into limelight when the southwest was still under the grip of AD
While in PDP, I purchased amplifier loud speaker and microphone for the party bus in my local government. I was one of the chieftains in PDP then but in 2014, I discovered Akoko South West was lagging behind in terms of infrastructure. The administration then was poor. So I had to leave the party in 2014.
With thousands of my followers, I dumped PDP for APC and was received by Adewumi Idowu, the ward 3 chairman and later by Daodu Bukola, the Local Government party chairman
*WHAT PROMPTED YOU TO CONTEST THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY IN THE COMING ELECTION?*
I’ve been a financial member of the party ever since I joined, I ask them the challenges from time to time.
Some of our leaders now called me in 2016 that since I love the party and I have shown it ever since I joined, that they want to send me to represent them in the house of assembly and this was a call I could not ignore.
Ever since, I’ve embarked on series of empowerment programmes.
*WHAT ARE SOME OF THESE PROGRAMMES?*
Every year since 2016, I empower 100 widows. I pick them randomly across the towns in the local government. Empower them with food stuffs, clothing materials and cash amount.
Also the orphanage homes. I visit them especially during by birthday. I give them money, food items, clothing materials and basic things they lack.
Again, I also discovered that some leople, when they fall sick, they can not afford N500 to take care of themselves.
The health centres oftentimes run short of drugs and cannot meet basic heath challenges.
I thought of what to do and what came to mind was having a free medical outreach.
On the day we had the programme, we captured over 3000 people. They were diagnosed for free, they also got free drugs.
That was done sometimes in July this year.
One day I went to the traditional ruler in my town, the Olubaka of OKA KINGDOM. I discussed with him that I was planning to launch a forum where people; students, farmers, aged ones, market women and everyone will come and benefit from.
The kabiyesi was so happy that day and we both sat town to discuss the name to call the forum. That was how Oka Development Forum (ODF) emerged and the forum was registered .
I launched the forum with N3million and the youth forum in my community, Oka Korowa Youth Forum, gave me an award of excellence for remarkable contribution at the level of empowerment in Oka Akoko.
We distributed forms to people free of charge to fill. When the Forum’s Secreatary checked the forms that were returned, we had over 4000 members that joined the forum. We have their forms and passport photographs
They have been benefitting from the forum eversince and we provide refreshments during our subsequent meetings.
In the forum, we borrow people money, we pay shool fees for indigent students, we help market women, we help farmers too.
*HOW DOES THIS HELP YOUR PARTY?*
Most of the beneficiaries of these gestures are now APC members. They joined because I, the facilitator belong to APC and they benefit from our various programmes. Majority of them decamped to APC
I ensured that they get the APC membership card and their voters card as well. I believe as I empower them the only thing they can give to me is to do what my own party will benefit from. I use my own money to empower them and I believe if they are members of the APC they will be useful. If any aspirants wants to contest, be it senate or house of representative. We know we have a structure.
*WHAT SHOULD YOUR PEOPLE EXPECT WHEN YOU FINALLY EMERGE?*
I’ve been using my resources to empower people. I will do more and better when I have access to government resources. I will utilize it very well even to accomplish greater political positions. If I don’t perform when elected as an assembly member that means my future political ambition will die.
I will use that four years as offer up to develop the community, empower people and serve them with truth and loyalty to the leaders of the party and the public.
Going there is not to represent my self. I want to serve. i want to develop that community.
*WHAT IS YOUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE LEADERSHIP OF THE PARTY?*
Am happy political leaders in the community supported all these, including the traditioner rulers.
Our leaders in the state are also aware of what we are doing and they commend us. These people we have empowered are today members of our party. I have good relationship with the leadership of the party.
Let me state too that our excellency GOV. Arakunrin Oluwarotimi Akeredolu, is doing great. He is hardworking. He is a man with good plans for the state in the areas of infrastructure and agriculture.