From Layi Olanrewaju, Ilorin
Former Minister of Sports and Youth Development Mallam Bolaji Abdullahi has reiterated his commitment to the promotion of youth development, vowing to vehemently pursue this goal in the National Assembly if the people of the Kwara Central Senatorial District give him their mandate to represent them in the Red Chamber in 2023.
Abdullahi, who was fielding questions from journalists at his GRA Ilorin residence shortly after his emergence as the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) Kwara Central senatorial candidate, said his priority in politics has always been how to promote youth development in the country. He said: “My emergence as the PDP candidate in my Senatorial District is an opportunity that I don’t take for granted because I believe the National Assembly is a centre of representation of people and that is where the business of government takes place in every democracy, so I take this responsibility very seriously.”My priority in politics is to promote youth development, right from the time I wanted to be governor up till now, it’s still the same mission. When you have 60 per cent of your population being youth, between the age of 18 and 35, you can’t do anything that makes sense beyond focusing on youth development.
“How do you give young people education, skills and opportunities to triumph in life? How do you give them the right value that will make them patriotic citizens? This will be the focus of my representation when I get to the national assembly.”
The seasoned journalist turned politician expressed optimism that the 2023 election would be quite different from the past, adding that what every constituency would get would depend on the quality of voice that is going to represent them in the National Assembly.
“I want to think the 2023 election will be remarkably different from wherever we are coming from, it’s going to be a major turning point for Nigeria, so what every constituency will get will depend on the quality of voice that is representing that constituency in the National Assembly and I believe that I can give that quality voice.
“Experience is everything, I was the only one who started as a Special Assistant, Special Adviser, Commissioner, a Federal Minister and a National Officer of the ruling PDP then. So, that robust portfolio of experience cannot be matched by other aspirants or candidates of other parties. And I can confidently list what I achieved at those offices, I believe this experience stands me and my party a better chance than any other candidates and parties because my party is fielding a quality candidate in me,” he added.
Abdullahi was full of encomiums for journalists for their support over the years, saying: “I don’t take your support for me and that of my party, the PDP for granted.”
Abdullahi specifically thanked the PDP stakeholders and the delegates for affirming him as Kwara Central Senatorial candidate.