Know Your Presidential Candidate (7)

Eunice Atuejide Age: 40 Years Party: National Interest Party (NIP)
Office: Presidency


I blame the insecurity situation on the current administration’s nepotistic way of doing things. We have people from this same region heading nearly all the security outfits in Nigeria, it is going to be hard for them to be objective. So, one of the things we need to do with our security agencies is to also open it up. Allow the best trained people from the different regions take control.
Massive investments in intelligence gathering and monitoring equipments across all security agencies. Massive implementation of CCTV observation decks across the length and breadth of the country, including within every public office.
Encourage neighbourhood policing, invest heavily in the training and reorientation of our police officers at all levels...

State Police 
I think our democracy is a bit too unripe for state policing. I do not believe in it. If we allow state policing, oh my God, elections in Nigeria will just be a battlefield where a governor... this is what will happen and that's just the same way the federal government uses the police to intimidate us during elections.

Economy + Inclusive Growth 
We will strive for a policy of privatization for sectors of the economy where government control is a deterrent to development. NIP aims to diversify the economy, reduce reliance on crude oil, reduce the gap between the rich and the poor, and with that expand the middle class which will strengthen our economy.
Invest in manufacture and processing of goods for export, low interest finance for local manufacturers, investments in housing, roads, sea- and airports to allow easy movement of people, goods and services.

Biafra Agitations
I am so against everything Biafra, Arewa, Afenifere… everything that tells you break away from Nigeria. What issues are they talking about? Everybody is marginalized in Nigeria, and why we can’t each see it is something that shocks me. The Northerner is feeling marginalized, his life is not going anywhere, he is not able to go to school or feed, he does not have electricity, nothing is going for him… You look at the Southern person, same issues. Everyone is marginalized because we have a government that does not care. I don’t want to even hear about Biafra.

Herders - farmers clashes
We will implement emergency measures to ensure grazing lands are proportionately and fairly allocated to our herdsmen. We will ensure such lands are thoroughly irrigated so that grass will continually grow on them to feed the millions of animals... Livestock feeds will be moved up north for herdsmen to acquire at highly subsidized costs, so as to enable their livestock thrive while the irrigation and allocation of the grazing lands take place. These measures will completely eradicate the need for our herdsmen to move into private lands which belong to other people for the sole purpose of taking them over for grazing.
NIP will improve our intelligence capacities, implement appropriate measures and safeguards to detect terrorist activities before harm is perpetrated on our people. We will connect our intelligence community, with our law enforcement and ensure they are always prepared to deal effectively with the threats immediately they arise.

It is time to make laws that criminalise parents whose children are not in school.
My platform stands for free primary education.
After you have done your primary and secondary school, which should be compulsory, if you are interested in going through higher education, you should get it. However, if you are unable to do it on the level that the examination board has set, you can still get that education from practical experience. You can go for a vocational study. If you want to be, for example, an engineer, you go through a mechanic shop or something where they are teaching you all the skills that the other people are learning through Mathematics and English, you are learning it by practicing it. So, when you spend the amount of time you need to gather all those skills, you get the same degree as the person who is getting it from the university.
On the issue of funding for education, a lot of it will have to be privatised.
Fees may increase at the tertiary level but that’s why you should make sure there are student loans, that every student who is qualified to have should have it. And when you come out of school and start working, you start paying it back.

Federal Character + alleged marginalization of certain tribes 
My administration will not focus only on the interest of any person, tribe, religion, ethnic group… everybody’s interest will be represented. Nobody’s interest is more superior to anybody else’s.
Guaranteed implementation of principles of diversity and inclusion at all levels, strict selection of credible men and women of high quality and undisputed integrity from all parts of Nigeria to man public offices, ensure quality over quantity in support of economic diversification and growth.

NNPC reforms + Removal of subsidy 
The problem with NNPC is not necessarily being private or public, it is the extremely inefficient system they have introduced in the place and made normal. Those are the problems and you could have the same problem even if NNPC is in private hands. Start first by uprooting all those issues. You may actually find there is no subsidy being paid to anybody. You may find that it is just a few hundred thousands paid as subsidies and the rest is just imaginary figures they give to us. Until you get there and are seeing clearly you can’t actually tell where the problems are.

Job Creation 
What I can tell you is that anybody who is serious about working in Nigeria will get jobs if and when I get into government because the reason we are not working is not because there is no work to do. And it is not because there are no companies or individuals willing to employ the workforce. But our policies make it impossible. We deliberately put out policies there that don’t let people do what they need to do. There are just enemies of progress in charge of our affairs. They won’t let you do anything. You need to take away all the policies and systems that allow that. Make sure there is transparency and accountability so people can actually come in and do what they have told you they are coming to do and employ people.

Other promises tracker
On 52-point agenda: I have a 52-point agenda with priority areas including education, security, health and economy, with focus on unemployment and power.
Women and Youth inclusion in governance
Everybody will get their opportunity to show their talent. I am not one of those that say we must take 35 percent for women whether they are good or not. I am one of those that say, allow everybody show their talents. And if in my government, God helps me and many women come through, I am happy to have 100 percent women in power, I have no issues with that whatsoever. I don’t care about that 30 or 35 percent but I am very happy to have 100 percent women if they are the best Nigeria can have.

Every structure works. The only problem is what kind of people are in charge of government on that structure. A lot of people tell you that the Section C of our constitution is the problem because it vests too much power in the federal government. And I tell people that's not the problem. The problem is not that there is too much power in the federal government. The problem is that we don't have the right people in the federal government. If you have the right people in power, what does it take to pass sub orders. Even if it's the monarchy, if you decide to make it work, it'll work.

We should have a country where every Nigerian is able to just go online and look at how much money the country is making and how the country is spending it at all levels… Every day Nigerians who are interested should be able to know exactly what we are earning and exactly what we are spending, where we are spending it, which people we are giving contracts to… These are the kinds of things my government will bring.
If you want to fight corruption, open up the system, bring serious transparency and accountability, you will fight corruption before they happen. What Buhari is doing is fighting all his enemies. If you want to fight corruption, open up the system, make everything you are doing public. When you do that, nobody has the guts to steal anything.

We will provide funding for qualified community health centers to be built across all local communities in the country.
Increase well equipped specialist clinics across the country, and ensure compulsory maintenance and management of structures and equipment at all hospitals and clinics.
Free healthcare for children and pregnant women, and compulsory government backed, contribution-based health insurance schemes for low income earning Nigerians.
We will not pursue a blanket free health care services for every Nigerian. We however propose a universal health care insurance scheme for all Nigerians. Nigerians who are too indigent to afford any contributions towards the health insurance scheme will be spared the burden of making contributions to the scheme. However, Nigerians who earn more than the minimum wage will be required to pay a percentage of their income towards the scheme. High net worth Nigerians who wish to, may join the scheme at a higher premium, otherwise they may hold private health insurance or remain uninsured if they choose to. In which case, they have to pay for health services in accordance with their specific needs.

My government will look to review a lot of the regulations. The way the regulations are set, the same companies cannot produce, transmit and distribute electricity. Every electricity produced in Nigeria goes to the national grid and the national grid is controlled by the government. That is where the problem is. What I would do is to get the government to bring in private investors who would be able to not only invest in the production of electricity but also invest in the transmission and distribution so that we can actually have private entities that are fully able to produce, transmit and distribute electricity.
There will be a lot of alternative energy sources – whether you are talking of wind, solar, hydro energy.

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