By Emeagi Emeka Williams
THE Founder, Dengel Anifowose Campaign Organisation, DACO, immediate past Chairman, All LGAs chairmen, All Progressives Congress, Lagos state and past Board Member, Lagos Neighborhood Safety Corps, LNSC, Otunba Dengel Anifowose, is a resolute political and grassroots leader whose enviable pedigree in the socio political cum leadership horizon of Lagos state will continue to glow and glow for global reckon.
In this great chat with Timeswatch in his Agodo Egbe residence, Alimosho, Lagos state, he boasted that his party, the APC, will continue to trail the blaze in Lagos’ politics as long as they continue to observe people oriented principles that support economic infrastructural development.
He also extoled Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu for setting a good leadership precedence in Lagos state since democracy returned in 1999.
Anifowose was a senatorial aspirant, Councilor and party chairman at different points in recent past. He spoke on the last Council Election primary, the Coming LGs poll and sundry issues.
His evaluation of the just concluded Lagos Council primary election:
The good thing that happened before that primary election is that the National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Tinubu, openly declared lack of interest in any candidate, situation which made the atmosphere open for direct primary.
Although, there were skirmishes at some places, but the party leadership has put modalities in place to calm all grievances.
There is certainly no perfect electoral process anywhere in the world.
His advice for the aggrieved aspirants:
Loyalty is a rare virtue in any movement which is resident in true party members. I will use my case as a paradigm.
When I contested for the Lagos East senatorial position, I got massive support, but strangely my name was omitted for the Primary of that contest. It was painful, because I had been with the movement since the Afenifere days, through the metamorphoses that birthed the APC.
My faith is that the party leadership will look our way one day and bless us.
The possibility of any other party clinching victory over APC:
This election is going to be between us (the APC) and others, so, whether the rest political parties decide to agglomerate and merge, the APC will defeat them, there is nothing they can do about it.
On whether the creation of the LCDAs has been rewarding:
The best thing that happened to Lagos state during the outstanding leadership of governor Ahmed Tinubu was the creation of 37 local council development areas to augment the existing 20 LGAs.
Since that feat from Asiwaju, Lagos has become better, both economically and infrastructurally.
The dividends of democracy have spread faster and deeper, to the point that their is need for more.
Should there be autonomy for the LGs in Nigeria:
There are 3 arms of govt which are the federal, state and local.
While the first two are operating autonomous, the last is not. This is statutorily wrong.
With autonomy, the multifarious facets of the country will be developed, and the problems associated with rural urban migration will be arrested.
The local govt system is integral to national growth. It is complete in its own scope, such as the executive, legislature and judiciary which is the customary court.
The only thing is that the administration should be monitored under autonomy to ensure that teachers and workers salaries are regularly paid.
So LG autonomy is best.
His feeling about the spate of insecurity in Nigeria and why Lagos is somehow calm:
The situation is worrisome.
And I must appreciate the present and past administrations who pay serious attention to security.
As a former board member of the Lagos Neighborhood Safety Corps, LNSC and a pioneer member, I am happy that LASG has and is still investing heavily in the sector, ensuring that each local govt has at least, 100 LNSC members attached to it to provide intelligence for safety and security, and to complement police surveillance and inputs.
Not just the governor gets sitrep about security situations of the nooks and crannies, the police authorities do also.
The LNSC even embarks on joint patrol with the police.
This is the peculiarity of Lagos, to the glory of the Almighty God.
Is the DACO special?
The Dengel Anifowose Campaign Organisation, DACO, is special and has a lot of followers in the Lagos East. DACO does place all the values on money, but can achieve outstanding results using the people as resources.
I must heartily thank the great and good people of Lagos East for their love and unflinching support.
When I contested for the senate in 2019, I got monumental support from them to shock my rivals and critics.