You are the only female contestant for the post of the Speaker in the 7th Lagos State House of Assembly, what are your chances in the race?
My chances are very high; I have so much trust in my colleagues and my leaders in the party. I have been in the assembly since 2003 and I have been loyal to my party.
I have been given a lot of awards even by the correspondents covering the Assembly under the auspices of Lagos State House of Assembly Correspondents Association (LAHACA). So, if the press can recognize the fact that I am working, I want the people to know that I take my work very seriously.
I am a lawyer by profession, and I have been trained to work hard. I believe my chances are very high, I have the support of my colleagues in the House and my party leaders, and I take God first in everything I do.
Are you not intimidated that you are competing with men?
Not at all, I am never intimidated; I have always worked in an environment dominated by men. I am a lawyer by profession, and when you talk about being called to the bar, I am the most senior lawyer in the LSHA, and I feel that we are ready for that change that we talk about in Lagos State. It is not just that I am competing as a woman; I feel that I am very experienced and I am hard working.
First among equals
I believe that being a team player would work for me. We are 40 members in the House and the Speaker is just first among equals. I have held positions of authority in this Assembly in the past. I believe that there is nothing that I ought to learn that I have not learned and I understand the budget of the House very well; I believe that this is one of the primary duties of a lawmaker. I am the Chairman of the Finance Committee of the House and I believe that the finance of any institution is the lifeline of that institution. I believe that for me to chair the Finance Committee, I must be doing something good.
Some allege that you are not accommodating and that there are some negative attributes that would derail your aspiration?
Didn’t you see people around me, when you came? This is part of what we are talking about concerning discrimination against women. These are emotional abuse against women, but I am not bothered, I would not say because they talk about me, I would not excel or that I am not going to represent my constituents, women and children in Lagos State and I believe that I have served women, children and my constituency very well. I don’t compromise myself as a woman. My Bible tells me to be submissive to my husband only.
If I was playing ball the way they wanted me to play it, nobody would say any bad thing about me. So, being a woman, you must stand on your right to achieve what you want instead of using your body. When a woman renders herself to be used unlawfully, then, she is good, but any woman who uses her brain to achieve great in life is seen as arrogant.
If I don’t compromise my belief, this does not make me a bad person. Some of those, who say bad things about me would come and still have a cup of tea, take sandwich and cookies. People pull you down with their mouth, just because they don’t want you to compete with them. But I don’t believe in talking down on people because I want to be Speaker. If I pull others down, I will end up as nothing. We have to separate sentiments from issues, the question is; am I doing my work very well, and am I representing my constituents well? If I am not accommodating, how come people keep sending me here?
Husband of substance
So, I am fulfilled and satisfied and my constituents love me and stand by me, and they encourage me to move on. That is what a politician needs. I have a husband of substance, a man that has self esteem, I don’t have to worry. The love between me and my husband dates back to our high school days. In fact, we went to the same primary school, I have known him forever and I know what he can do, he also knows what I can do. If you go and tell him any bad thing about me, you are wasting your time. A lot of people have had their homes destroyed, and they run away, but I would not run away.
What Bills would you work on as the Speaker of the LSHA?
We have a lot of things that we can do, there are so many things to be done in Lagos State. Not only child abuse, we need to work on other laws. We have done a lot of things such as cremation law, health insurance law and all that. These are the kind of things we look forward to
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