*Confident of Ajaokuta’s Resurcitation.
Honourable Abdullahi lbrahim Alih, ( Halims) is the current Member of House of representatives, representing Ankpa /Olamaboro and Omala Federal Constituency. Halims as he is popularly known is a business man with wide interests in Oil and Gas, Hotels and Tourism and Mining , was one time a member of Kogi state House of Assembly for Ankpa 1 state constituency.
In this interview, the federal Lawmaker said in two years, he has impacted positively on his constituency in the area of job employments, youth and women empowerment and infrastructural development across the three Local Governments.
He disclosed that the resuscitation of the moribund Ajaokuta Steel Company is dear to him because it will change the socio economic narratives of Kogi state and the country.
You have spent two years in the Green chamber, how well for the electorate that voted for you.
To the glory of God, if we must consider what transpired within this period, I can beat my chest that I have done marvelously well for my people. Despite the challenges of economy and health issues occasioned by Covid 19, I have provided dividend of democracy to my constituents.
Today I have the record of 45 of our youths who have been gainfully employed in federal government pensionable employments and I have recommended also well over 500 youths for employment in various organisations.
Frankly speaking as a legislator I have no power to employ ,, but I use my connections to facilitate employment for my constituents, despite the embargo on employment, which actually restricted my efforts, I would have attracted between one hundred to two hundred employments for the people.
However, I have people working in the federal University Lokoja, Federal Polytechnic Idah, NAFDAC, NARSDA; others are engaged at NSCDC, NDLEA, Immigration Service, Correctional Service, infact seven people are working in NNPC and I have also given scholarships to students to study for their Masters and PHD through Petroleum Development Trust Fund. PDTF.
In terms of empowerment, I have given succours to the youths , market women and those with educational disadvantages. In 2019 over #42Million naira worth of items, such as , keke NAPEP , Motorcycles, Grinding machines , Sewing machines and pumping machines were distributed to every ward in my constituency.
To the farmers , sometimes last year 1,800 bags of fertilizers were distributed and every ward has 25bags to the 34 wards that make up the constituency.
Recently, I commissioned over 65 motorised boreholes in Ankpa, Olamaboro and Omala LGAs , and also , three months ago i commissioned a 3.5 km earth work in Ankpa , although, rain posed a serious challenge , but we are replanning to executive thorough work so that all the effects of rainfall would no longer be a challenge and this is exactly what we are doing.
You have been in the House of Representatives for almost 2years , can you beat your chest that you have fulfilled your electoral promises.
Fulfilling electoral promises depend on what the people needs , but then, there are things you don’t promise, but are good for your people, you have to go out of your way to do for them. As a legislator, my primary responsibility is to make laws , by way of motions and bills for good governance. I have done over 16 motions that have direct bearing not only to Ankpa, Olamaboro and Omala, but to kogi state and Nigeria as a whole.
The bills that I have done that have direct impact on my constituency are the construction of Guto- Bagana bridge which I highlighted its over all benefits to my people and the entire country. As I speak, a sub committee has been set up to deal with it. In the health sector , and because of the way my people are exposed to suffering, I have moved a bill which has reached committee of the whole House for the establishment of Federal Medical Center Ankpa. Nationally I have contributed to good governance by way of motions. Recently again, I moved a bill for the establishment of insurance cover for the Members of National Youth Service corps NYSC who are exposed to danger of accidents, kidnapping and insurgence attacks. The bill seek to institute a one year insurance cover for these young boys and girls while on a national service.
I also moved a bill for intelligence studies to be included in our secondary schools curriculum. This is to give security awareness which will ultimately reduce insecurity. It will empower the young ones to know security measures at a tender age. And by way of motion , that our police men on the highways should be properly dressed and kitted and their vehicles properly identified, because, robbers and bandits often take advantage of them to cause mayhem on the highways, and I know that government is working in this direction.
On the police reforms, my motion was part of the implementation. Last year , I enrolled our students for JAMB. And I’m glad to announce that many of them have secured admissions to tertiary institutions and we are planning on how to further assist them. We are moving forward by the grace of God.
Before your election, insecurity in he constituency was alarming , but the situation now has changed for good, what is the magic.
There is nothing magical about it, it is only that we are collaborating with all the critical stakeholders in the Constituency to deal with it , and the result is massive, as the insecurity across the constituency has dropped drastically.
As the chairman of the House committee on steel, what are you doing to resuscitate Ajaokuta Steel Company.
Thank you very much. Discussing Ajaokuta is like I’m discussing my personal issues. I discuss Ajaokuta with passion. The government knows that , yes , my major worries in the House is how to make sure that Ajaokuta comes back to life. It was the outbreak of Covid 19, as I used to say in various platforms, by the grace of God Ajaokuta will come on stream.
We are actually waiting for the payment of Technical Audit Fee (TAF) It is about two Million Dollars ( $2m) and I’m confident that President Muhammadu Buhari will not hesitate to approve the payment.
Once this is done , Ajaokuta will breathe life again. Ajaokuta is not only about producing steel, it will generate electricity, produce fertilizers and what is the meaning of all these, our state will benefit as the revenue base will rise. It will improve socio economic activities of the state and we are sure we will achieve our aim.
Ajaokuta’s resurcitation will employ about 10,000 professional engineers, not talk of artisans, security guards, welders and what have you , it will provide massive housing . Many things will come out of a working Ajaokuta and that is why we are working round the clock to ensure that it comes back to life.