Posted by News Express | 26 December 2012 | 3,874 times
A Presidency official has taken Senator Babafemi Ojudu to task over the mobile health clinic which he is about to launch for his constituents in Ekiti Central, South-West Nigeria.
Mr. Bolaji Adebiyi, Special Assistant (Media) to President Goodluck Jonathan, challenged Senator Ojudu after the latter posted photos of the mobile clinic on Facebook and announced that the programme would take-off early next year. Ojudu is a chieftain of the Action Congress of Nigeria which controls Nigeria’s South-West while Adebiyi belongs to the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), which holds sway at the centre.
“Where do our legislators get the funds with which they provide these largely executive functions?” Adebiyi asked Ojudu.
In his reply, the Senator conceded that it is not the duty of lawmakers to provide such services but tried to defend the project all the same. His words: “The poor people who voted for us do not understand all these distinctions. They believe you are elected to solve their problems. Whatever we can do to assist them we shall do while not failing in our duty to make laws.”
Replying another interested party who joined the debate, Ojudu wrote: “We shall get there but as things stand now a politician will be committing suicide to turn his back at the poor people who need help. I know it is not my duty to pay constituents school fees, to assist in roofing houses, to provide money for burial, pay hospital bills, pick wedding bills, distribute trailer loads of rice, turkey and cows at festive periods and still be asked for the money with which to buy the condiments to cook it. We do several other things which do not come with our constitutional roles but which people expect of public office holders. But when they run to you what do you do? Run away from them or do the little you can? You need to talk to an average public office holder and listen to the demands made on them.”
News Express had yesterday reported on the mobile clinic project which Ojodu is undertaking under the auspices of the Raliat Ojudu Women Development Centre (ROWDEC), an NGO which he founded in honour of his late mother and made operational long before he became a Senator last year.
•Photo: Senator Babafemi Ojudu.
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