Give us your background details
My name is Olayinka Agboola. I had my primary school education in Ebire Nursery & Primary School, Felele Ibadan. I then proceeded to Government College Ibadan, for my secondary school education. I did my A levels at the Polytechnic Ibadan after which I travelled to the U.K where I trained in Information Technology, specialising in Project Management and becoming certified as a PRINCE 2 Project Manager. I worked in the U.K for some blue-chip companies for some time, before returning to Nigeria to establish my own private business.
Which office are you vying for?
I am seeking the nomination of my party, the People’s Democratic Party, for the House of Representatives for Ibadan North Federal Constituency
Are you convinced that you are the best candidate from your constituency for the post?
Oh yes, I am well prepared for the role, having done extensive research into the roles & responsibilities of a federal lawmaker. I also have a knowledge of the laws. Moreover, my exposure & work experience has put me in good stead to perform well in the role. Subject to winning the ticket of my party, I am ready to offer better & effective representation by the grace of God. There is a popular saying, that advises us to “Follow the person wey sabi road”. A lot of people who aspire to political offices lack the capacity to perform effectively. Because our society does not focus on the character & capacity of the candidates, the wrong candidates emerge. I think political parties should henceforth subject all aspirants to an intellect & integrity interview or debate, whereby they would explain their understanding of the office being sought and how they intend to function effectively in the role. This would guide the delegates in choosing the right candidates.
My areas of interest where I intend to sponsor bills to improve the socio-economic well-being of Nigerians are the Economy, Creation of Employment, CSR, Education, Women, Health, and Agriculture.
What are the motivating factors for the position in question?
The quest to contribute my quota to a better and new Oyo State as being championed by my amiable and hardworking Governor, H.E, Engr. Seyi Makinde, is what motivated me in seeking to represent the good people of Ibadan North Federal Constituency to provide effective representation. My first focus on getting to the National assembly is to rally other National Assembly members (14 House of Representatives members and 3 Senators, which would all be from PDP after the 2023 election on the inauguration of the 10th National Assembly in June 2023), from Oyo state to lobby & pressurize the Federal Ministry of Works to refund all the money Oyo State government has expended on repair & construction of Federal roads (over N50bn), so that my focused & hardworking Governor Engr Seyi Makinde could have more funds to do more of the dilapidated Federal roads scattered all over Oyo State.
The ext would be the lobbying of federal agencies to provide loans and grants to entrepreneurs & traders in my constituency & Oyo state at large. It would interest you to know that the two biggest international markets, namely the Bodija International Food Market, (which Nigeria’s Bureau of Statistics collates data from to calculate the national food inflation rate), and the Bodija International Plank Market (which attracts customers from Niger, Chad, Cameroon, etc) are both situated in my Federal Constituency.
These hardworking entrepreneurs should be supported with single-digit loans to increase their capital base. There is also the need for more presence of FG projects in Oyo State, even though we are currently in the opposition party, but I believe that PDP would be the ruling party in the Federal level by 2023 when Nigerians would have rejected the current clueless APC party, that has failed in every sector including Security, Economy, Education, Health, Agriculture, etc and have sunk the country into a bottomless pit of debt. Another one I intend to pursue my constituent which has a large number of youths is training in Information technology through MDA’s in the Federal Ministry of Science and Technology. I mean certified training in Coding, Cyber Security, Project Management, CISCO Networking, etc, So we can start exporting IT professionals as it is currently done in India which provides a lot of IT support to companies in the USA and Europe.
Another one is the need for the re-jigging of FG agricultural institutes which we have a lot of it in Oyo State like CRIN, FRIN, NIHORT, IART, NCRI, etc whose impacts are not been felt. I would look into harnessing the advantage of their being located in Oyo State to provide training for youths who want to venture into agriculture.
How would you describe the present Governor of Oyo state?
My Governor, H.E. Engr Seyi Makinde is an amiable man who has been meticulously providing an example of how Leadership should be and that is why he is adored by all within the State & across the country. As a trained engineer he has applied his knowledge of EPC in solving the myriads of problems left by the previous administration. Firstly, he knows the importance of funds as the foundation required to prosecute the various lofty projects he has designed for Oyo State, hence he blocked revenue leakages & embarked on an aggressive increase of internally generated revenue, which he has pushed to N4bn monthly IGR, from the paltry N1.5bn inherited from the past administration. This is highly commendable. The various infrastructural projects embarked upon by Governor Makinde are there for all to see, and that is why citizens of some other States are asking if we could loan him to them to come and govern their states for a year.
Another commendable act of H.E Engr Makinde is his transparency in the running of government through the Open Contract Portal, where all contracts awarded are displayed on a portal for all citizens to see. This is an uncommon feat that has earned him the trust of the citizens of Oyo State.
What are you doing to give the people of your constituency a sense of belonging?
The family I come from is a well-known one in Ibadan. My late father was a community leader and the arrowhead of those who founded the Bodija Plank Market (Iso Pako). In fact, his sense of fairness ensured he allowed all the right people to become Baale at his insistence before accepting the honour of being the Baale despite his immense efforts at establishing the International Plank Market. He was the Baale Onipako of Ibadanland until he passed on. He was a well-loved man and a great philanthropist. So, about two years ago the family launched a foundation in his memory called Mafoya Foundation where we provide medical intervention to those in need and education scholarship awards to indigent students. We do an annual medical outreach in Bodija Iso Pako & St Peter’s church, Aremo. The foundation’s website is (www.mafoyafoundation.org). I also provide mentoring and support to youths in my constituency and I assist them by providing financial resources and information to those who intend to further their education abroad.
How have you been complementing the efforts of Governor Seyi Makinde?
The role of developing the society cannot be left to the government alone, hence we all in our private capacity must contribute our quota in supporting the government to achieve a virile & peaceful society. As I enumerated above, there is a family foundation called Mafoya foundation through which we provide medical support and scholarship for indigent students.
I also support NGOs taking care of widows and vulnerable women in the society, I am also a patron to various youth groups who I deliver motivational speeches to, pay for their Jamb forms and support them financially in meeting their other educational expenses. An educated society breeds a peaceful society.
Insecurity, kidnapping, maiming, and ritual killings are now very rampant across the nation. As somebody interested in politics, what is the way out of the problems?
It’s a worrisome situation whereby citizens cannot move freely from one part of the country to another without the fear of being kidnapped, maimed or attacked. The Federal Government in the area of Security, which is the primary responsibility of a government has failed woefully. The deficiency of the current constitution of the country where the state Governors who are supposedly the Chief Security Officers of their states does not have the constitutional power to order the Police to act, unless they get an order from the Federal Government in Abuja, is a big hindrance to effectively curbing and preventing crime in the states. The issue of State police and Federal police as it is practised in USA where we borrow the current Federal system of government we are practicing needs to be looked into in order to curb the festering menace of insecurity in our country.
Most University graduates are jobless, how would you engage them if eventually, you get to your desired post?
I take exception to the use of the word “Jobless” as these graduates have done their bit by studying to graduate, which is not a mean feat. It is not their fault that they couldn’t find a job. It is the failure of the government and the society in which they found themselves. In most advanced countries the level of graduate unemployment is not as high as it is in Nigeria. So I would rather you use the word unemployed graduates.
I think I would suggest a change in the curriculum of our universities to include entrepreneurship, so our graduates can be given a soft loan with moratorium to be able to set up businesses in govt designated business hub where constant electricity & other amenities would be provided by the government. As an information Technology advocate, I would encourage the retraining of our savvy youths into IT which is not all technical, like Project Management methodology. Agriculture and Sports are other areas which I would advise our unemployed graduates to look into, but taking it on as a business, rather than the old mindset of it being a hobby and of course with a well designed structure and take off loan from the government.
On a lighter mood, a lot of men are very aggressive nowadays, leading to violent attack on their female counterparts. It’s a condemnable act in its entirety, as no man should raise up his hand to hit a woman under any circumstances. It is even condemned in the Bible & Quran, it’s a despicable act which attracts a jail term and I support the penalty for such, because if it is not curbed ,it has led to so many untimely death of women in our society.
What do you think is responsible for this?
Unfortunately most of the men who naturally want to provide for their families have their egos bruised because they couldn’t due to either unemployment or loss of income, and hence transfer the frustration to their wives, also some badly raised men, who grew up seeing their mother been abused or thinking the female gender is a second class one, tends to go physical on women to prove their dominance on women, which is totally wrong.
We need to raise up more morally sound male children, just like we currently emphasize on morality for the girl child. The same attention and standards should be set in morality for both gender when raising them, so we can have a violence-free society
What is the way out?
The way out is to set an equal standard in raising both the male & female children, so they can both uphold the ethos and morals of the need for a just, fair & equitable society. Because the society is a reflection of the upbringing we gave our children in the adolescent age.