Member representing Ogoja/Yala Federal Constituency in Nigeria’s House of Representatives, Jarigbe Agom Jarigbe, believes if the constituents who voted political representatives into office are bitter with their performance, they will vote them out in any election. He also maintains that the representatives of the people, who are not prepared for elections are the ones who will welcome the purported decision of the National Working Committee, NWC, of the People’s Democratic Party, PDP, to grant National Assembly members, automatic tickets.
Jarigbe who disclosed this in an exclusive interview with www.calitown.com, however sounded out that, “I did not hear the NWC say nobody can run elections against National Assembly members. What I heard was the NWC, appeal that we should be given the right of first refusal. If someone makes an appeal to you, you can either accept or turn it down. I think at this point, those who protested to the PDP secretariat in Calabar, are insisting on the exercise of their constitutional rights. We must be cautious with this situation because some of those protesting are more politically acceptable on ground, than some of us. But then, their acceptability maybe because they have not yet been elected into political office; you know your popularity begins to dwindle when you become elected into political office because of constraints you may not have forseen.”
Continuing, the Member of Parliament, MP, cautioned the PDP not to give deaf ears to this protest because, ” it will cause a lot of hemorrhage like it did for the party in 2015. We sure have learnt from that episode, I believe, and we know better that the people can vote against what may be our confidence and we will lose. Caution and a responsive disposition should guide us, going forward. ”
On the allegation making the rounds in his constituency that he was given the House of Reps ticket on a platter of gold, a visibly angry Jarigbe responded: “that is an insult. I sympathise with those saying this, especially because they have refused to see that my winning the House of Reps seat is my first taste of political office in 16 years. Some of those putting this insult through have stayed in the Cross River State House of Assembly for eight years and want to challenge the House of Reps seat. Please ask them, in their eight years in the House of Assembly, they should show you one motion moved, a bill initiated or passed into law. Let us also be shown the location of something as simple as a hand pump borehole, which is less than N500, 000 (five hundred thousand naira), that is in their constituency, courtesy of them. Look for these or any act in fulfilment of Corporate Social Responsibility, CSR. If you see all of these things, point me to them.”
For his constituents, the MP believes that, “what has happened in the last three years is my modest attempt at staying true to the promises I made. I have so far tried my best in the present circumstances and I remain more than ever challenged to seek a second term in office, go back to Abuja and compulsively work at delivering visible democratic dividends to my constituent. I am sworn on that”, he concluded.
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