Chief Kamarudeen Lanre Mabadeje Razak, popularly called KLM is a business mogul and former Lagos State Commissioner for Public Transportation. A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC), the Epe High Chief, who aspires to represent his Lagos State East Senatorial District people in the Senate in next year’s, told some journalists the motivation for his aspiration to be at the upper legislative chambers in Abuja. He also spoke on why he is backing President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Akinwumi Ambode of Lagos State for their second term ambition. PATRICK OKOHUE reports.
Why do you want to be a Senator?
Thank you very much. I want to be a senator because I know very well that I have the capacity and what it takes to provide reasonable, adequate, essential and purposeful representation for the Lagos East Senatorial District.
More importantly, this period of our political situation in Nigeria, we need committed patriotic people, who will believe in the supremacy of the party and the leadership of the party to ensure and promote the ideals of what the party stands for and to be committed as a patriotic person in this country.
What is happening in the National Assembly today is an eye opener for true, committed Nigerians to see the need to be there to assist Nigeria to build the needed legislature to support the executive and not to compromise the ideals of a good legislature in this country. That is one of the major reasons.
What are the promises for your people when you succeed in achieving your goal?
My promise to my Senatorial District is that I will provide them quality and vibrant representation. And since I know they so believe in Asiwaju Bola Tinubu’s commitment and leadership, I will be the apostle of their wish.
And far more than that, Lagos State requires special consideration in the scheme of things in this nation.
This is the former capital of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and now the commercial centre of the country, there is therefore the need to accord the state a special status in terms of provision of more infrastructure.
I mean the essential ones that would provide conducive environment that would sustain the economic leadership of Lagos State.
How do you see your chances of clinching the party ticket out of about seven other contestants?
My chance is good and bright in the sense that there is no known member of the party that is not known to me. And there is no member of the party that is not quite aware of my antecedents and ability to really provide quality representation that they need.
And I have no doubt in my mind that they would give me their support because they know what I am capable of doing. They know I go for nothing but the best.
How do you feel about the Direct Primary as now being adopted by your party?
It is not strange to me. That is what is called Option A4, where every member of the party would be given an opportunity to choose his own candidate. That is the best system that can deepen democracy. And I have to thank my party for toeing that line.
Are you comfortable with the second term aspirations of President Muhammadu Buhari and Governor Akinwumi Ambode of Lagos State?
I am very comfortable. If Ambode has another four years, Lagos State would be fantastically developed. We would be happy people. We would be very proud people from Epe Division of the state.
I can beat my chest that my candidate from that area has proved beyond any atom of doubt that we have surpassed the anticipation of the Lagos people in respect of Governor Akinwumi Ambode.
And furthermore, the rot of 16 years, three years efforts cannot be wiped it out. And more importantly, with the type of National Assembly leadership we have, which has not proved beyond an atom of doubt that they are not in the party,
not part of the party and that they came to the party to destroy it and go back to the PDP that destroyed the country for 16 years. And I know Nigerians are wiser. They would not accept that.
We will allow Buhari to complete another four years to establish dignity of labour, to establish transparency, to stop corruption and to put a foundation on which the government of the Federal Republic of Nigeria can be built so we can have a situation that is happening in Lagos State today.
Asiwaju Ahmed Bola Tinubu laid the foundation for good governance in Lagos State in 1999. And since then, we have been putting responsible, reliable and effective people in governance, Lagos State has continued to develop.
And that is why we are very proud of the Jagaban Borgu, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu. And that is why we are also happy that he is solidly behind the Buhari’s government and its aspiration to continue for another four years.
Of course, the Minister of Finance, Kemi Adeosun has confessed that they borrowed some inputs from Tinubu’s system of government and that they are applying it in the Federal Government. If that continues between now and 2023, Nigeria would be a better place to live in.
Going by the importance of legislature in democracy, how do you intend to operate to make good impression?
It is true that the legislative arm of government is very vital and important organ needed by the executive to prosecute and deliver good governance.
I will do everything possible within the armbit of democracy and ensure I have the eyes of the National Assembly and we must be on the same page as a party.
They must see what we have promised the people and what is needed to hasten to achieve that as a government.
And that is why the party at the National Assembly and the executive which is the Presidency must constantly discuss, constantly review issues, constantly remember themselves of their commitment and covenant with the electorate so that they can work together.
A situation where we have National Budget being passed in July is not good because one wonders how we execute a year’s budget in five or four month? That is not acceptable and I am happy my President has changed that.
And I am happy that he is now determined and bent on ensuring committed, patriotic individuals to be in the National Assembly to do the bidding of the good people of Nigeria.
In your view, what signal have the APC victories in the three recently conducted by- elections in Kogi, Katsina and Bauchi states sent out to the defectors from the party?
I have said it severally that those defectors have no base. They are only creating awareness and they cannot go beyond what they have done, I can assure you of that. What is their interest in the people they govern? They cannot go further than where they are, I can assure you that.