I have deep love for my country and have found myself demanding credible governance- Kunle Lawal
Kunle Lawal also known as KL2019 is a senatorial aspirant from the Federal Capital Territory under KOWA party. He speaks to YNAG team on his political journey and aspirations.
YNAG: Thank you for coming on YNAG Platform, please can we get to know you better?
KL2019: My name is Kunle Lawal, I am a Brand and Management Consultant based in Abuja. I am also a Managing Partner at Sandslaw Ltd. I was born and raised in Zaria, Kaduna state where I spent most of my Educational background till I left for Abuja in 2002. I am Married and Blessed with a Son. I have Spent most of my life in the Private sector as a Consultant to private companies, development agencies and Non-Governmental agencies. Between 2009 and 2010 I served as a PA (IT and Publicity) to the Honourable Minister of Women Affairs and I was Part of the team that organised the first Women’s political summit. I initiated the Orange movement which was setup with a few people to introduce young people to the systems of governance and mainstream politics. I am part of a host of groups which support voter education, youth participation in politics and credible elections. I have always loved given back to my environment and was actively involved in volunteer teaching to help improve the educational sector. I am quite simplistic in my approach to life and enjoy playing chess, studying politics and history and appreciate a good football match. I am also considered quite active on social media on issues concerning governance which got me noted by TV and Radio stations who occasionally call me in live or via telephone to analyse topics in politics and governance. I am the current National Publicity Secretary of KOWA Party.
YNAG: What brought you into politics and for how long have you been in Politics?
KL2019: I have a deep love for my country and have found myself demanding credible governance. I always remained a critic of the status quo and placed the Onus on myself to initiate the orange movement in 2014. This singular action spiraled to being noticed by a political party and I found out I couldn’t change the machine without being a part of it so I accepted the party invitation in 2015 and rose to become a member of its National Executive Council. So I could say I have been in active politics in the last three years.
YNAG: Is this your first time of contesting political position?
KL2019: This is my first time contesting for a political position within the Nigerian political system. It has been quite an experience with the campaign so far
YNAG: As a Senatorial aspirant, what is your interest for the people you want to represent at the senate?
KL2019: I am an Aspirant for the Senate Seat in the FCT which has only one seat in its constituency. The three major outlining issues within the FCT of the average individual are;
Rent: I have come up with a bill on standardization of rent based on location within the FCT without placing Landlords under pressure. This should solve a big problem of living in the city. The bill would also ease rent rates for land owner so as to serve as a balance mechanism.
Education: Based on my experience in volunteer teaching, the disparities between private and public schools is wide and I have a bill in place to reorganize the ETF fund and expand its contributory model to make primary education free while pulling a fund as used in the pension system to pool resources for education. To also reduce the cost of private schools, a lot of taxes they pay would be cut down but all these would be taken into cognizance with a massive emphasis on quality and I will actively propose that at least twenty percent of the Nigerian budget is spent on education
Health: This remains an expensive venture within the FCT, my team is still working on bills to cover community medicine with plans for scheme to support it. We are debating on primary healthcare taken from the Federal and placed in the hands of the local government to help re-calibrate the organisation of the healthcare system and finally the welfare of health workers and quality of health care must be improved
YNAG: If voted in, what should the people of FCT expect from you as their senator?
KL2019: If voted in, the people of the FCT should expect this as a pledge; it would be history that they can’t have access to their senator. I also plan to remain in my rented home with my family. They should be rest assured that I intend to walk among the people normally and most of all host town hall meetings within the area councils weekly with other elected officials covering that jurisdiction or area council, traditional and ward heads and people from the populace that intend to attend so as to always keep in close contact with the people. I will operate an open book in all my operations.
YNAG: A lot of young people are now going into politics, what is your advice to them?
KL2019: My advise to other aspirants that are young and not of a predictive political class is we must all learn to work together as a team, being young is not enough. Your strength lies in your capabilities and sharpen them as much as possible. Most of all, understand that you need alliances; don’t be afraid to ask for help and place the people first in all your actions. All politics is local.
YNAG: Amidst other political platforms, why KOWA Party?
KL2019: KOWA party gave me a home when I showed an inkling towards politics. I am mentored and criticised without favour. The party built me. Its ideals and core plans resonate with me and within its structure, I have been exposed to an open and simple democracy. What tops it all is its simple approach to provision of a platform for the next generation of politics
YNAG: How do you intend including young people in your district in good governance?
KL2019: As seen within my campaign team, I have been willing to work with people who have distinguished themselves. I am building a team from the ground up with local government chairmen, house of representatives members who are also young working with me under a united ticket. I am where I am today because I was given an opportunity and I have trained myself to avail myself to that sense of reason. I plan to adopt interns to move around with me to see how the political system works and even want to go as far as A SENATOR FOR TODAY. I would introduce a monthly programme that would produce a one day senator in primary and secondary schools and would give them a dream. I would also be available to mentor groups in institutions in Abuja to give advice to young ones who wish to go into politics and learn from them as well.
YNAG: #YNAG is a platform that encourages and enables young people’s participation in governance and politics; in what ways do you support or intend supporting platforms such as this?
KL2019: YNAG has given me an opportunity to be featured earlier and now a platform for a personal view. I feel this is a worthy cause and would provide the resource for other aspirants. I will also look at events I can partner with or get people to partner with depending on location. It’s a win-win situation.
YNAG: Any final word to the electorates in your senatorial districts.
KL2019: Credible Senators come from an environment that moves beyond the regular money politics to issue based politics. I may seem young but I am just like you in every sense of the pains we have felt from electing people that haven’t brought us the desired opportunities and a good democracy. My name is kunle lawal and I’m not in this for the usual reasons most politicians do; I am in this because my mandate belongs to all of US. We all would be Senator is my basic principle.
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