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Leadership, they say is the capacity to translate vision into reality. The closest I have ever been to Honourable Ali Ahmad, one of the governorship hopeful and current speaker of Kwara State House of Assembly was in 2017 in Abuja.
I was assigned to cover a public lecture (Professor Epiphany Azinge Annual Lecture) and behold, the man Ali Ahmad was one of the guest speakers. He delivered a lecture titled: The Legislature in Emerging Democracies; Challenges and Prospects.
I was not only awestruck by the depth he went to exhaust the content of the paper, I was amazed that a politician could take me back to class with rapt attention.
I did a further research about him after the lecture, I then realized Ahmad is not only gifted intellectually but he’s as well imbued with capacity to translate vision into reality.
The success stories of today’s Administration of Criminal Justice Act is unarguably the brain child of Ahmad. The ACJA, as described by the former chief Justice of Nigeria, Aloma Mukhtar is a revolution in Nigeria Criminal Justice Administration.
The 480-clause of the ACJA sponsored by Ahmad successfully repealed the erstwhile Criminal Procedure Act which applied in the South and the Criminal Procedure Code which held sway in the North.
The ACJA is no doubt promoting efficient management of criminal justice institutions, speedy dispensation of justice, protection of the society from crime and protection of the rights and interests of the suspect, the defendant, and the victim”.
How well could you describe man reputed to be the Number 1 legislator who sponsored the highest number of Bills in the 7th Assembly?
His relentless efforts and passion for vibrant legislation for the good of the downtrodden saw him being elected as Speaker of theKwara State House of Assembly on June 8, 2015.
Since his assumption of office as speaker, the Kwara State House of assembly has displayed unprecedented vibrancy in the quality of its Motions, Bills, Resolutions and overall legislation.
The House under his leadership engaged in strategic interventions in burning State matters including those involving the Labour and Students and all were resolved to the applause of Kwarans.
Notable among his interventions include:-
Donation of food items to NUT and NULGE during the non-payment of salary crisis.
He interfaced with the Executive for the release of N1Bn from Paris Club Refund for payment of Teachers’ salary.
He advocated for removal of Primary school Teachers’ salary from Local Government.
He advocated for takeover of payment of Basic School Teachers’ salary by the State Government.
He Intervened in Labour-Government faceoff over payment for Training by State Civil Servants.
As the Chairman Conference of Speakers of State Houses of Assembly, he facilitated the passage of the Not Too Young To Run bill which seeks to reduce the age limit for running for elected office in Nigeria.
Facilitated the bill which suspend the payment of pension to former Governor and Deputy Governor.
He ensured the passage of the people with disabilities bill, which seeks to strengthen the right and privilege of the physically challenged in the State.
Ensure the passage of the bill which seeks to prohibit unlawful dealing in Human parts.
As Kwarans look forward to who will mount the saddle of leadership come 2019, of course the selection process of APC flagbearer may not be an easy one owing to some certain factors, but it is imperative to state that competence and purposeful leadership are needed at this time to lay solid foundation for economic prosperity and challenges ahead.
The State need a passionate leader with a robust way of looking at the entire facets of the state, so that at the end of the day, no sector will be left unattended to.
A leader that will hold the view that only a strong economy can give our people what they want by making life more abundant and generating employment for its teeming youths.
A leader that will look at the state’s potential and grow it without waiting for allocation from Abuja before delivering on dividends of democracy to the people.
A leader who will offer al-Amaanah (the trust and moral responsibility or honesty) and accepts all the commands and prohibitions with the conditions attached.
Dr Ali Babatunde Ahmad is the most qualified Kwaran at this time we can trust the affairs of State with, won’t you rather support him?
Kehinde Abdulsalam Writes from Abuja