Meet: Ejikeme Alozie-Nwagboso
If you recollect,a couple of weeks ago we brought you the Hibe Exclusive interview with the Gubanitorial candidate of the UDP in Abia state Uche Chuta,where he espoused a lot of his views, ideologies and what spurs him on.In keeping with the core ideals of this online Publication which is to celebrate and highlight achievements and profiles of present generation of Nigerian and African youths,we have followed through and again are bringing you another wonderfu interview from another Diasporean who has left the relative comfort of his former base,career and moved to Nigeria braving the odds and taking on the established Politicians of Abia state by contesting for electoral post.In this cerebral and intellectually insightful interview Ejikeme Alozie Nwagboso will unearth what drives him,and inspires in why he decided on contesting and about his family and all other issues which we touched upon during the interview
HibeOnline:Thanks a lot for granting us this interview how far have you gone concerning your Political engagement with constituents?
Ejikeme: First, i thank you so much for this great opportunity to be interviewed by your team. Politics means reaching out to people and seeking their votes. Reaching out to people could be done via a variety of ways – Face to Face, Social Media and Telephone etc. I have gone far in reaching out to my constituents, and luckily the response has been encouraging so far. They now understand the need to have capable hands representing them. Someone who will deviate from the status quo and put to good use his position to the betterment of his people. My chance of clinching the seat is quite bright.
HibeOnline: kindly introduce yourself and what you do now including Political aspirations
Ejikeme: I am Ejikeme Alozie-Nwagboso, a native of Umuadienwe Asa Ukwa West LGA Abia state. I am an Accountant by training; currently works as one. Married with a son.
HibeOnline: did you and uche chuta jointly make the decision to return back home or it was just a coincidence?
Ejikeme: Laughs. Life is one big road with lots of signs. We follow these signs to our various destinations. But, i must point out that, as individuals we have different destinations. I happen to somewhat have same destination with Uche Chuta, the UDP Gubernatorial candidate for Abia state. We coincidentally met on the pathway to our destination.
HibeOnline: Apart from God whom most people will promptly credit who and what are your source of strength and inspiration especially with the decisions you have taken in recent times.
Ejikeme: Simple. First and foremost is my family. My wife and 17month old son are my greatest source of inspiration; then, my extended family and friends.
HibeOnline: you will obviously have been considering Politics for a while but what single incident finally persuaded you that it was time?
Ejikeme: It is important to remember that politics is about making decisions for the greater good of people. And, in a representative democracy as we have in Nigeria, i want to help create an environment where the individual, as well as the nation, can excel. We have to secure the future for our forthcoming generations. I have always been passionate about the state of affairs of my constituency and have followed it to the best of my ability since 1999. In recent years, my people have yearned for change for effective representation seriously that i felt it is the time to serve my people starting from 2015.
HibeOnline: I read your article on the state of Ukwa and I could feel your passion what other motivation is driving your resolve?
Ejikeme: The state of affairs in my constituency is my primary motivation. Good governance needs to be brought closer to the people. I have resolved to unhesitatingly assume the representation of my people and dedicate a disciplined attack on my people’s common problems. The people are lacking a basic framework to bring the best out of community and government relationship. I will create a practical program for my people that will serve as an open and visible avenue for decision making regarding my representation. This program will be accessible to every Ukwa man. This program will provide a forum for expression of divergent view points from my constituents. We can no longer live hopelessly. We have to provide a structure at developing a consensus on issues bothering Ukwa people.
HibeOnline: considering how lucrative Politics is now especially with the economic downturn in western countries, what guarantee will you give that you are not going to the House of Representatives for the money?
Ejikeme: Politics is not lucrative. It is offering oneself to the service of her people. However, i understand the angle you are coming from. The reason for that is we have the wrong set of people in politics. They vie office to pursue their selfish interests. This is the reason we are languishing where we are at the moment. The country has enough intelligent minds to set her on a sound footing for economic vitality. If the right sets of people are elected into political offices, the country will be overturned in no distant time. Like i said earlier, the suffering of my people is my motivation and not my own enrichment.
HibeOnline: with the way Politics is practised in Nigeria, what plans do you have in place for the inevitable challenges local godfathers ,thuggery,money even invitation to join cults etc?
Ejikeme: Well, i have no Godfather; I am campaigning on my desire to serve my people. I have plans and messages for my people. It is a capital NO for me in terms of thuggery and cultism.
HibeOnline: I asked Uche this question so its only fair we asked you as well how do you plan to finance your campaign?
Ejikeme: I haven’t the money to spend like it is done in Nigeria, so i am counting on the kind donations of people – Friends and family.
HibeOnline: what did you do as an occupation before you moved down to Nigeria, and what do you presently do as a job/business?
Ejikeme: I am a trained Financial Accountant and continue to practice my profession. I work with a diversified financial company serving the Financial, Technology and Healthcare sectors. I am also the Founder of Cedar Innovation, a Management Consulting Company.
HibeOnline: what are the biggest challenges you would say you faced when you moved to Nigeria, then when you got into Politics. How have you surmounted them and how have these challenges impacted you, your life, and outlook since you became a permanent resident in Nigeria.
Ejikeme: Nigeria is an evolving country, much like any other place. Things change constantly. However, we have our certain way of life. Since, i returned to pursue my aspiration for office, it hasn’t been that difficult adjusting because i am in Nigeria every other year. And tend to understand the flow of things.
HibeOnline: before you moved back home to engage in Politics in what ways have the people felt your impact maybe programmes, social welfare initiatives etc
Ejikeme: My constituent association in USA- Asa Development Union, USA has in the past organized a free medical treatment program for our people back home. At the time, i was the Secretary General of the Association in the USA. I contributed towards the program my best possible way. I served two terms as Secretary General of the Association.
HIbeOnline: With the present antics of first ladies we have realised how imperative it is to know about not just the aspirant but their partners kindly tell us about your wife.
Ejikeme: My wife is a Nigeria and US trained Attorney. She is good cook by no small measure and my main pillar of support.
HibeOnline: if you had to choose one overriding malaise your constituents are confronted with, what single issue would you say is your priority?
Ejikeme: Increase in oversight of usage of money accruing to them. My constituent is the single oil producing community in the state of Abia. The 13% derivation from Federal account should be put in good use for the people. The NDDC will be made to discharge their duties effectively in helping reviving the economic vitality of Ukwa. I will sponsor an amendment bill to the NDDC act as passed. We need to require the member state representatives to participate in performance report system before the National Assembly. The amendment bill will include the creation of an Accountability office that will conduct field investigations of administrative activities and programs. This office will adjudicate on contract bids and make recommendation for legislative action.
HibeOnline: how far have you gone encouraging others to follow in your decisions to move back home and are you mentoring any young aspiring boys and girls?
Ejikeme: I speak to people about it every time. We must join hands together in solving the issues facing our dear country. I am open to mentoring young men and women who want to serve their nation. I do not know it all, and I’m still learning on the go. Learning is forever a continuous process.
HibeOnline: Considering the strong influence of ethnic identity in Nigeria including our shared history, in your case Biafra how would you say it has affected you and perception of Nigeria even if you were not directly involved?
Ejikeme: It teaches us History. And, we are supposed to learn from it. We cannot allow such things hold us back from carrying forward. The Southerners are incredibly industrious and the Northerners very hospitable. I stayed some years in the North.
HibeOnline: playing the devils advocate now would you be open to a concession or an arrangement where you will be offered a compensatory post if you were asked to step down for someone?
Ejikeme: Not in this race. I have seen at the moment my major opponent, and i am a better candidate no matter how you want to slice it.
HibeOnline: what do you hope to have achieved looking back 5/10 years from now
Ejikeme: Better relationship between the government and my constituents. A relationship that brings joy to my people derived from effective representation.
HibeOnline: how important is family religion,life,achievement to you?
Ejikeme: Extremely important. Family is the most important to me. I do not joke with my household. That’s why i am living in the first place aside God, my creator. I am a Christian. I believe in God and do my best in worshipping him. Achievements are just rewards for hardwork. I am hardworking, as such cherish achievements.
HibeOnline: what would you say is the most impacting and enduring advice you have gotten till date and from whom?
Ejikeme: Advice from my late father. He said to me that I should always try to put myself in the shoes of the down trodden. This advice helps daily to shape who I am.
HibeOnline: Share something unique about you, it could be a skill, sporting prowess anything?
Ejikeme: While growing up, i was exceptionally flexible. I was very good in Gymnastics and heavily talented in Soccer. I love intelligent conversations.
HibeOnline: Your favourite holiday destination
Ejikeme: Cancun, Mexico. Nice place to be for relaxation. Nice weather and activities. Just fun.
HibeOnline: Your favourite food Ejikeme: Rice flour with Egusi soup.
HibeOnline: funniest or most embarrassing, awkward situation you have encountered
Ejikeme: Laughs. None.
HibeOnline: looking back what would you miss most abroad as you return to Nigeria?
Ejikeme: I have shaped myself to always see a solution from difficult positions. Abroad provides me better infrastructure and opportunities, and for this reason I see solutions in the difficulty situation my constituents are facing.
On a last note,hibe online will like to urge every youth or even adults of voting age with their PVC desirous of real change, to please vote for these Present Generation of Politicians.Apart from the wide and varied experience they have brought from observing and working in a first world economy,their youthfullness,drive and intellectual acuity stands them in good stead.we as a brand have pledged to support every Politician from the youth demographic with altrustic motives to serve.
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