Kogi State Information and Communications Commissioner Kingsley Fanwo, who also serves as the State’s Digital Economy Supervisor, in this interview with AROGBONLO ISRAEL talks about the recent Supreme Court verdict confirming Alh’s choice. Yahaya Bello of the All Progressive Congress (APC) as governor of the state of Kogi and declared the petitions presented by Engr. Musa Wada of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) and Barr. Akpoti Natasha, of the Social Democratic Party (SDP), as insubstantial respectively.
Fanwo, who describes the sentence as well-deserved justice, says those who failed the sentence do not know the facts of the case. However, he calls for a more united, development-driven and progressive Kogi, and one that, in turn, gives the people the dividend of a good democracy.
Following the recent Supreme Court ruling on the November 16 governor’s election in Kogi state, mixed reactions have been generated from various quarters. What is your opinion on the matter as a veteran journalist?
It’s about doing justice to justice. The justices of the Supreme Court deal with the facts and not with the emotions. This is the last hurdle. We need to move forward and remain united as a people and as a State.
Would you say this was a well-deserved victory for your party considering the various allegations that follow the integrity of the poll?
What the court has done here today is confirm what we knew all along that the governor won the contest cleanly and by the rules. It is very popular in the state and the jubilations that have erupted throughout the state are testament to that fact. He won the elections convincingly.
How would you react to disparaging statements made against the judiciary by some Nigerians since the sentence was passed?
We must learn to respect the decisions of the courts. It does our nation no good if we continue to run into disagreements in court when we lose cases. Sportsmanship is important to people who play politics.
How does your party intend to reconcile itself with the opposition parties in the state after the recent sentence?
The Governor will work with anyone who is genuinely interested in the development of Kogi State. The opposition should join him in building the state. Kogi belongs to all of us and all efforts must be directed towards helping our people in this difficult time of economic gloom. The past must be placed where it belongs. It is time to march forward stronger in unity. The Governor’s sole interest is the development of our beloved State.
What are the plans of the State Government for the people now that the Supreme Court ruling was handed down in their favor?
We need to help our farmers to produce optimally. We need to encourage small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to survive this harsh economic reality. We need to continue to invest in our education and work with a plan so that our education solves problems. We need to increase investment in health. These are the plans of Governor Yahaya Bello’s administration. He never lost focus despite the court cases. He stayed true to his promises to people to do more.
What practical steps are being taken to ensure that all of the aforementioned plans become reality before the end of this term?
The processes are already underway and all the relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies are working around the clock to make it happen. We have inter-ministerial committees working on the plans. We have no time to lose and the governor is committed to recovering the economy in the face of the threat of Covid-19 to our economy. As a responsible government, we are already working to cushion the effects.
Finally, your advice to the people on this auspicious day.
Governor supporters should celebrate this responsibly. Those who lost must go ahead and support the government to serve the people. We must remain united and avoid actions that could erode the advances in security that the administration has registered. Let me assure the good people of Kogi State that this administration will continue to serve you.