By Oyeniyi Iwakun
A former Presidential Adviser to Obasanjo and lawmaker, who represented Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo federal constituency at House of Representatives, Hon. (Mrs) Janet Adeyemi said it was through her efforts and the support of Chief Olusola Oke that Ondo state was included in the Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).
Hon Janet said in chat with MMS Plus in Lagos recently, that out of passion and patriotism she stepped into the representation of Ilaje/Ese-Odo that was without a representative at that time at the red Chambers bringing her constituencies to two (Ilaje/Ese-Odo and Ile-Oluji/Okeigbo).
“Aside being from Ondo state, I co-sponsored the NDDC bill because at that point in time at the red chamber there was no representative from Ilaje/Ese-Odo federal constituency as a result of litigation for almost one and a half years. It was later Hon. John Mafo eventually won on the ticket of People Democratic Party (PDP) and came.
“For me I felt that my state was being cheated so I decided to take up the challenges of running the two constituencies (Ile-Oluji/Odigbo and Ilaje/Ese-Odo federal constituencies) at the National Assembly and I became so vocal with supporting Ilaje/Ese-Odo.” She said.
The former lawmaker further explained that, apart from her zeal, it was Chief Olusola Oke who brought a brilliant proposal with detailed facts on why Ilaje/Ese-Odo should be part of NDDC and subsequently made himself available to ensure that the struggle scaled through.
“And then, Fola Ajimakin brought Chief Olusola Oke to me and they submitted a paper telling me on why Ilaje/Ese-Odo should be part of NDDC and what should be done and the paper was so articulated. When I got the paper, I started mobilizing my colleagues convincing them to support the bill.
“A committee was set up and I brought in Chief Olusola Oke to address the committee. You know legislative things is about lobbying and before you know it, one thing led to the other and today it is history. That was what dovetailed to having a Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC).” she said
Hon Janet said at the initial stage, people believed Ondo state should not be part of NDDC but she was able to go to the Berau of Statistics, Nigerian National Petroleum Commission (NNPC) and all the other relevant organizations to prove her points.
“at that time I discovered that we were number three (3) in oil production in Nigeria. In fact, it was the fight around the table between me and one of the elder statesmen that made me a daughter to the elder statesman today. He initially disagreed with accepting Ondo state as part of NDDC but by the time I was able to bring enough supportive evidences, from Berau of Statistics, NNPC and other agencies, nobody could push Ondo State aside.” she said.
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