What makes Rafiu Ibrahim thick in Kwara South?

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Senator Rafiu Ibrahim



The re-election bid of the Senator representing Kwara South Senatorial District in the National Assembly, Dr Rafiu Adebayo Ibrahim, has triggered an avalanche of reactions on the performance of the legislator in the last three years and why he deserves to take another shot in view of his delivery in the Upper Chamber. AHMED ‘LATEEF, in this report, takes a cursory look at what had been done differently in Kwara South representation.

Without doubt, performance is one of the yardsticks employed to measure the capacity and capability of an individual entrusted with leadership responsibility. Through the performance measurement, resolution is made to determine the fate of such an individual whether to proceed or create a stopping gap.

In every saner clime therefore, performance of those charged with one task or another is usually used as a determinant and consequently form the decision within which the individuals are observed and even recommended for higher task.

Having grasp of ascertaining the performamces of the privileged few entrusted with the mandate of the people also has to do with the operational environment. This therefore goes without not saying that the environment must be highly sophisticated. It is inclusive of education, exposure and the likes.

Just like every other state in the federation, Kwara State is divided into three senatorial districts, namely, Kwara Central, Kwara North and Kwara South. Each of the three senatorial districts is known with own peculiarities such that any attempt to distort glaring fact about the trio would be swiftly resisted.

In Kwara South in particular, what distinguishes the people of the zone, which majorly consists of Igbomina, Ibolo and Ekiti is their incontrovertible level of education, exposure and available resources. This confers a lot of advantage on the senatorial district that would not play second fiddle in the scheme of things.

The level of the quality and uniqueness of the zone combined apparently makes it imperative for whoever holding public offices in trust for them to be cautious and not sway by perks and prestiges revolving around the offices. For Kwara South, it is either you perform to justify their confidence or be shown the way out.

With 2019 elections lurking around, the tempo of political activities in the senatorial district has become all time high. It is very unusual that the district has caught the attention of people in recent times and what to expect is now issue of discourse at different fora.

Though the district has been fortunate to have two different Senators that represented it in the National Assembly since the return of democracy, Dr Rafiu Adebayo Ibrahim, a banker turned politician, who is the incumbent Senator, seems to have outshone his predecessors and broken the jinx of little or no performance over the years within his barely three years stint in the Red Chamber.

Because of his performance that cut across every spare of life in the senatorial district, the legislator has endeared himself to the warmth embrace of Kwara South, who are becoming more politically sophisticated everyday.

As alluded, the sophistication of the senatorial district in Kwara State alone may apart from own mindset, compels whoever is representing them to give his best before the day of stewardship comes.

For Rafiu Ibrahim, Kwara South is a political terrain that has undergone revolution in terms of quality projects and programmes that have direct impact on the lives of the people. Since June 2015 when he was swore-in in the Senate arm of the National Assembly, Ibrahim, a former member of the House of Representatives for Ifelodun/Offa/Oyun Federal Constituency, changed the narratives for good with many developmental projects completed or ongoing.

The legislator, despite chairing the Senate Committee on Banking, Insurance and other Financial Institutions, used his influence to facilitate construction of Offa/Ojoku/Afon Road thereby linking Kwara South to Kwara Central. While the phase one of the road project has reached 90 percent completion, the second phase in also ongoing in quick succession.

Other ongoing construction projects at the instance of the Ojoku-born politician include Ora-Agbeku-Edidi Road in Ekiti Local Government Area, erosion control and Ajasse-Igbonla-Agengbe-Agbamu Roads in Irepodun Local Government Area and rehabilitation of Agbeku-Edidi Roads Ekiti Local Government Area.

As part of efforts to cushion effect of water problem, the legislator also intervened in the ongoing reconstruction of Ojoku Water Works,
Oyun Local Government Area and as well as construction and completion of motorised boreholes with 3.5KVA generator at Erin-ile Market, Ganmo Market Ifelodun LGA, Kara Cattle Market, Ajasse Ipo, Irepodun LGA, Edidi community, Edidi in Isin LGA, Onira Palace, Ira
Oyun LGA and Chairman council of Oba’s Palace, Kwara state.

The intervention on water project also included construction and completion of borehole at Aba-Ologede community in Idofin Odo-Ashe district, Oke-Ero LGA and
construction and completion of handpump borehole at Onisapa, Omuaran, Gaa-Okeode
Ifelodun LGA, Ganmo Ifelodun LGA, Aba-Ologede Oke-Ero LGA and the ongoing assessment and repairs of non-functional boreholes in the 83 wards of the seven local government areas of Kwara South.

In his determination to electrify communities and connect to the National grid, the legislator provided and completed installation of electrical poles for 23 communities in Offa and Oyun LGAs. This is coupled with the provision and completion of the installation of 33KVA/500KVA transformer for Iloffa community in Oke-ero LGA, 33KVA/500KVA, Osi community in Ekiti LGA and Omu-Aran in
Irepodun LGA.

The banker turned politician also funded to completion the construction of a block of three classrooms A Junior Secondary School, Eleyoka, Information Communication Technology (ICT) Centre at Kwara State College of Education, Oro in
Irepodun LGA; University of Ilorin Students’ Union Relaxation Centre, University of Ilorin; renovation of two blocks of two classrooms with an office at Muslim Primary LGEA School, Igosun, Oyun LGA, renovation of a block of four classrooms with offices and stores at Ansarul Islam Secondary School, Offa,
Offa LGA; renovation of a block of three classrooms with an office at Iyeru Okin Primary School, Offa, Offa LGA; renovation of a block of four classrooms with offices and stores at Community Comprehensive High School, Obbo Ile, Ekiti LGA; renovation of a block of three classrooms with offices and stores at Erinmope Primary School, Oke-Ero LGA; renovation of a block of three classrooms with offices and stores at Okose Community LGEA Primary School, Babaloma in Ifelodun LGA; renovation of a block of five classrooms with an office, toilet facilities and stores at Muslim Community LGEA School, Oke-Onigbin in Isin LGA; renovation of a block of three classrooms with an office at Muslim Community LGEA School, Okeola, Oro
Irepodun LGA and renovation of Offa Township Library in Offa LGA.

Other projects the legislator undertook and funded to the completion were construction of a block of six modern toilets with a motorized borehole and a 3.5KVA generator at Ganmo Market in Ifelodun LGA, a block of six modern toilets with a motorized borehole and a 3.5KVA generator at Kara Cattle Market, Irepodun LGA; a block of six modern toilets with a motorized borehole and a 3.5KVA generator at Erin-Ile Market, Oyun LGA; and a block of 6 modern toilets with a motorized borehole and a 3.5KVA generator at Edidi community, Isin LGA.

Similarly, he funded to the completion the construction of a block of mosque for Elerin of Erin-Ile, Erin-Ile in Oyun LGA, landscaping and beautification with drainage at Elerin’s palace premises, Erin-Ile in Oyun LGA, construction of a motorized borehole and a 3.5KVA generator at Onira Palace, Ira, Oyun LGA, construction of a block of Mosque at Elese’s Palace, Igbaja in Ifelodun LGA, landscaping and beautification with drainage at Elese’s Palace, Igbaja in Ifelodun LGA, renovation of Olupo of Ajase-Ipo’s Mosque in Irepodun LGA, installation of solar street lights at Olupo of Ajase-Ipo’s Palace in Irepodun LGA, landscaping and beautification of Olupo of Ajase-Ipo’s Palace in Irepodun LGA and construction of a modern secretariat for Association of Baales and Mogajis in Oyun LGA with motorized borehole and water storage facilities.

In what can be described as a new dawn and a clear departure in the representation of Kwara South in the National Assembly, Dr Rafiu Ibrahim also impacted in the area of educational support with provision of scholarships to students of the senatorial district origin studying in foreign countries and in Nigerian higher institutions of learning.

This was also complemented with sponsorship of Bello Emmanuel Temitope for a standard flight operations course No. 21 at Nigerian College of Aviation Technology Zaria and provision of scholarship for the payment of pilot licence to an indigene of Offa LGA, Khadijat Olabanke Adigun at the International Avaition College, Ilorin.

The Kwara South Senator in collaboration with Entreprenuership Development Centre (EDC) of Central Bank of Nigeria facilitated entreprenuership training for 200 youths in October 2017 as well as the forthcoming teachers retraining programme for human capacity development with the theme: “Mordern teaching practices and techniques” in collaboration with National Teachers Institute and Kwara State Universal Basic Education Board, which holds this year.

Other beneficiaries of the legislator’s various interventions included religious organisations and groups and empowerment programmes funded to the tune of hundreds of millions of naira.

The interventions of the member of the upper chamber of the National Assembly had changed the narratives in the political representation of the district widely acclaimed to be elite dominated. His achievements were therefore considered as a landmark in the annals of Kwara South.

However, ahead of the 2019 general elections,
Senator Rafiu Ibrahim, has given an indication of his readiness to return to the red chamber to continue if entrusted with the mandate again.

The legislator, who is expected to contest senatorial primary election of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) spoke after the submission of his expression of intent and nomination forms at the state party secretariat in Ilorin.

“After due consultation with my family, the stakeholders in our constituency, our party members and coming from a genuine call to seek re-election so that to the glory of God we can continue the good work as being done at the Senate, back at home and for the fact that by the grace of Almighty God, our leader, the Senate President, who will be the President of Nigeria come 2019, so I have desire to be there so that I can continue to bring the dividends of democracy to Kwara South and Kwara State in general.

“And I believe that I have enough legislative capability and human relation capability among the constituents and the party to be able to win election for our party without too much noise”, Senator Ibrahim said.

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