The Parliament Diary


In this one on one interview with the publisher, Precious Enebuse, Hon. Dennis Idahosa, recounts his achievements within two years in the House and profers solutions to the challenges confronting the nation now.

For the benefit of our teeming readers, we would like you to tell us who the man Hon. Dennis Idahosa is and academic background?

My name is Honourable Dennis Idahosa and I represent Ovia Federal Constituency in the Nigeria’s House of Representatives. I went to primary and secondary schools in Ovia and thereafter, I did my B.Sc in sociology and currently doing my Masters on Legislative Studies.

What motivated you into politics?

Thank you for that question. Initially, I hated politics with passion because of the perception we had about politicians but being a giver, I noticed my little resources won’t be enough to give my people a better life and basic amenities they want in the region. So, that’s what compared me actually and in order to do so much for my people, I decided to venture into politics so that I can create the impact that I wanted in my society.

Two years into your tenure as member representing Ovia Federal Constituency of Edo State in the green chambers, can you beat your chest and say that you have truly delivered on your legislative mandates and effectively represented the people of your constituency vis-a-viz fulfillment of campaign promises?

I have been in the house for two years but have only been able to input projects in the budget for only one fiscal year. When I came into office in 2019, we had about three projects for my place which the whole full year seems I wasn’t representing my people well but in 2020 I was able to do so much compared to only three projects in 2019.

Apart from that, I have been able to sponsor so many bills and motions. I think we had about 11 or 12 motions that we sponsored so far and our people because I am from agrarian community, they usually believe on seeing the dividends of democracy not just lawmaking or sponsoring of bills, they want to see projects in their constituency. So far like I said earlier we have about 29 projects in the first year and that consist of high number of primary and secondary schools, healthcare centres, street lights, skill acquisition centre, ultra-modern town halls and the list goes on. So, we’ve done so much for our people and will continue to do more because to whom much is given much is expected. The reason why I came to national assembly is because I want to make impact in the lives of my people and until that is done, I will not rest.

What’s the state of infrastructure, education, health and security in your constituency and what should your constituents expect from you in the next legislative calendar?

Well, the state of infrastructure in my federal constituency before the assumption of my office I think they were in a terrible state but that was what compared me to be aggressive in terms of delivering of dividends of democracy as regards to execution of projects. You know, not just projects but people oriented projects. The educational sector was very bad but luckily for us we have done reasonable amount of jobs in area of healthcare, we didn’t know how bad it was until corona virus came and that has also given us a wakeup call to fill up the gaps. In terms of roads, there was a situation whereby a bridge collapsed in my constituency and immediately I was able to swing to action. As we speak, it’s about 40% done and they are working there almost day and night to ensure that the 45 communities that were separated from us were connected back so that they can transport their farm produce, have access to healthcare and education just like every other persons in the constituency.

As Chairman, House Committee on Legislative Compliance, what has been your objective and achievements so far since your inception?

As Chairman, House Committee on Legislative Compliance our mandate is to look at the Acts that have been passed by the National Assembly to ensure compliance of every motions, bills and petitions. So far, we are doing very well, we have been able to reinstate some of the federal employees who were disengaged. We reinstated them back because I think some of the parastatals in federal agencies don’t usually comply before now to legislatures but we have been able to compelled them to do the needful and we will continue to do so. There are a lot of motions, bills and resolutions that were passed in the House that wasn’t complied with or followed. We are compelling all the agencies to do that. Our members are very committed not just the committee, we are even going beyond because I am also a member of other committees. So, I have been able to learn from their interactions as a young parliamentarian and I believe I am learning very fast in areas of legislation. I strongly believe based on our mandate as legislative compliance we are fulfilling our mandates.

We are over six decades as a country yet we have been indisputably unable to achieve the desired dreams of our nationalists, like other nations in the world. What do you think will be the best solution to revitalize this country and make her join the comity of technologically developed nations across the globe?

Well, I have always made it clear that when the head is bad every other part of the body is gone. What we need is good leadership with good policies. I think Nigeria is gifted with all sorts of talents, you know we have people. If you notice that most Nigerians they leave here and became the best in various countries of the world but while they are here, they don’t have all it takes to fulfill their dreams and aspirations. So, good leadership with good policies, I think we will change our Nigeria to enviable heights.

Apart from that, we as a nation, government alone cannot do everything, collectively if you noticed like in the western world, like America for example, the youths are the ones driving the economy and in Nigeria that certain categories are not engaged, that’s why as a result of that you are seeing this unrest in every region of the country. So, what we need like technology will be able to absorb a lot of our teeming youths but because some of our appointed ministers they are clueless, they don’t even know what they are doing because if I am a president of this country, I will focus so much on technology because I think the global perspective has passed the era of crude oil. The main thing now is technology and telecommunication, so I think Nigeria should take due advantage of that and that should be able to create a whole lot of jobs opportunity for our teeming youths.

What’s your reaction on legal and political implications on the recent declarations by the southern leaders on topical national issues like ban on open grazing and restructuring within the Nigerian constitutional provision and the stands by some Northern Governors and interest groups who opposed restructuring?

I think that alone cannot solve the problem, I think we all should come together. They have been clamouring for restructuring, to me I think we should implement the 2014 constitutional conference recommendations and that will solve virtually every part of our problems. So, the ban on open grazing alone cannot solve the issues. There is a lot of agitations everywhere but the most important thing is that we should come together as a nation. Division will not bring anything to the table, so I think we all should come together as one family as one united Nigeria to make this country prosperous for all of us.

As a legislator, what’s your relationship with the chief executive of your state and how would you rate his performance and also in handling of the ongoing inter and intra party crises in the state?

The chief executive officer of my state, Governor Godwin Obaseki has always been my very close friend and there was a slight issue that made him go to the opposition but he’s someone I have tremendous respect for and whatever that he’s going through I think a lot of people might look at it from different perspective. In terms of development, I think he’s doing well and i will continue to pray for him to do well because Edo State is a state for all of us and when it comes to development, we put party aside. As the governor of my state, I will continue to pray for him to excel and even the Bible say so. Whatever crisis that he might have engaged in that God should give him peace in the midst of that and together I believe we will work with him and we are willing to work with him to make sure that Edo gets the best in everything.

As one of the youngest federal lawmaker, what is your future political projection? Are you eyeing the Senate, Governor, Vice President or President in response to the clamouring for generational change in leadership? 

That’s a very good question! Well, I am a spiritual person and anything that God wants me to do on earth that is what I am going to do. God is my navigator and He sees the end from beginning. So, I think I will allow Him to be one that will continue to direct my affairs, I believe when I allow God to lead, I will be amazed in wherever I found myself not just being in the position but also be a blessing to my generation.

Lastly, what’s your message to your constituency, the youths and Nigerians in general?

I want to use this opportunity to thank my constituency that voted me to office. They have given me so much responsibility and I believe while I am in office, I will continue to serve their purpose. To my teeming youths and Nigerians in general, the time for us to come together is now. We don’t have any other country, this is our country. I am going to speak to all leaders from various regions that we need unity and we need peace. A country that doesn’t have peace cannot progress and leadership alone which is the president of a country, the government cannot do it alone. We need to come together and seek the way forward.

I will appeal to those leaders in various regions that are agitating for various things, what we need at this present time is peace, let the peace of God be upon this nation so that we will all benefit from this nation. We don’t have any other country, this is Nigeria of our dream, let’s make it the real Nigeria that we all dream of.


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