Thursday, 21 August 2014

Every System Of Government Will Work In Nigeria -Hon. Israel

Fagbemigun Israel is the newly inaugurated Senate President of the National Association of Ondo Students (NAOSS). In this interview with Campusbeats, the 400-Level student of the Department of Microbiology, Obafemi Awolowo University, speaks on national and domestic legislative issues. Excerpts

What is the role of the legislative arm in fostering unity among students?

As popularly known, we are law makers, but our roles go beyond making laws. We are to check the activities and official responsibilities of the executives and are also expected to offer support appropriately where necessary, especially in activities that strengthen our unity. All these responsibilities at the students’ arm of legislature is all in a bid to foster continued unity and development for the entire students’ populace.

Student unionism over time has become a means for some student leaders to access money from politicians. What is your take on this?

I totally disagree with that, but the act is conspicuously obvious and very abysmal. It is a product of lack of leadership orientation on the part of those in position. I as a student and the Senate president will always frown at such act. Though I agree that it exists, it is not universal.

Can politics among students be free of corruption?

Yes it can, with the proper mentality and that will only happen if we all search for, and get the correct orientation through periodic reading and review of our political activities. Students engaging in politics should embrace the spirit of sincerity of purpose.

Which would you recommend for Nigeria — the presidential or parliamentary system of government?

In my own view, neither is bad. It is not the system of government that matters, but the leadership charisma and the sincerity of purpose on the path of those at the helms of affairs. Nigeria will thrive well on any system of government if its citizens allow it.

What in your view is the solution to the unending rivalry and superiority clash between the executive and legislative arms of government?

The solution is actually not as complex as most people think. It only requires that a legislator recognises the office of an executive and respectfully carry out the function of check-mating his activities. On the other hand, an executive willingly presents himself with all respect for scrutiny. Whenever the law is respected and checks and balances observed, tension will be reduced within the polity.

How did you start student politics and which posts have you held before now?

I started by paying rapt attention to public discussions on OAU campus and in the country at large. In the long-run, my attention got shifted to political issues and that was how it started. I developed interest in changing things for better in public leadership by seeking political power.

In my first semester while in 100-Level, I contested for the post of the class representative and I lost. Also in the second semester, I contested for the office of the Assistant General Secretary of my faculty and lost again, but by the grace of God and the effort of men around me, I have contested for 16 other political offices after then and I have won all.

As regards the posts held before, I was the local government coordinator, ‘Ribadu For President’ campaign team in Ondo State in the 2011 electioneering campaign. I was the P.R.O of the National Union of Ikale Students, OAU chapter in 2012, I was also an honourable member of my faculty Student’s Association Parliament for three years, during which I served on several house committees like Chairman of the Project Monitoring Committee, secretary of the Audit Committee to mention but a few. I was also privileged to serve as the General Secretary of NAOSS in OAU and later became president in the 2012/2013 session.

 By Kemi Busari, (OAU)

Source: Nigerian Tribune
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