Former Managing Director at the defunct National Mirror, Dr Abiodun Raufu has revealed why he plans to contest for a House of Representatives’ seat during the next dispensation.
Raufu, who was also a former Editor of the Nigerian Tribune but now an Assistant Professor at a United States of America University reconfirmed his plan to reach out for the House of Representatives’ seat of the Akinyele/Lagelu federal constituency in the 2023 general election.
He disclosed that reputable men must rise to salvage the country from totally collapsing adding that his desire to contest was hinged on giving back to the society in order to facilitate more development to his constituency.
He said “I want to give back to the society, I could have stayed in my comfort zone and do nothing. But with the way Nigeria is going, all men of goodwill need to come out and do something. We must not allow this country to crash and I need to take a stand that is why I am coming out to contest under the umbrella of Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) to represent Akinyele/Lagelu constituency in the House of Representatives”.
The Journalist turned lecturer revealed all these while featuring on a weekly radio show, Parrot Xtra Hour on Radio’ anchored by Olayinka Agboola and broadcast live on the Broadcasting Corporation of Oyo State’s Oluyole 98.5 FM Ibadan, the state’s capital on Monday evening.
He was of the opinion that Nigeria currently needs new set of leaders, who are honest and are not self-centered. He disclosed that poverty has ravaged many parts of the country as many people live from hand to mouth while describing the best way to help the people is to get involved in politics and ensure that resources are efficiently allocated to help the society.
He also submitted that the problem of Nigeria is beyond corruption as many government agencies have engaged in white elephant projects that are not beneficial to the people at the lowest level. He stated that Nigerians need basic amenities such as water, electricity, good roads as the absence of these will lead to lack of development.
He equally submitted that the best way President Muhammadu Buhari can reduce unemployment is by making “agriculture attractive to the youths while stating that the government can make millionaires out of young farmers”.
He stated that “young Nigerians are afraid of venturing into agriculture because the basic amenities are not available to guarantee their success and survival in the venture.”
He described his unforgettable experiences when he ventured into farming around Oke-Ogun area of Oyo State. He said he recorded so much loss because of bad access roads.
“I had a farm around Oke-Ogun before I went to the US – most of the roads were just meant for motorcycles. I bought N350,000 worth of cassava stems from the International Institute for Tropical Agriculture (IITA) and was transporting them to our farm, I lost more than half of the stems and the distance between the farm and the main road was just about five kilometers.
When asked what he would say to Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State if he is given the opportunity to offer an advice, his response “I will want Governor Makinde to concentrate on providing basic amenities for the people at the lowest level because that is their need at the moment”.
Dr Abiodun revealed that while he was on tour of his constituency, the people’s desires included need to have access to potable water and electricity.
When quizzed about how he became a journalist, he said “It was not part of my plan while I was growing up. It was when I got to the University of Ife that I developed a passion for it. Some of my roommates were campus journalists and they discovered that naturally I have a flair for writing and I began to go around with them. Some of my mates then were the former SSG to Ogun State Government, Mr Taiwo Adeoluwa, Senator Babafemi Ojodu.
“Along the line, I started writing features stories for major newspapers in the country and people thought I could write extremely very well even though I was still trying to navigate my way into academics because it was my childhood dream.
So, I was writing and sending features stories to Daily times and one day, I got employed there. From there, I went to work with The Punch Newspaper. At a point, I was Press Secretary to my late mentor, Dr Ahmed Kusamotu. After that, I worked at the Nigerian Tribune before I was employed by Mr. Jimoh Ibahim as the Managing Director of the National Mirror Newspapers.