Hon. Mohammed Sani Otto is the executive chairman, Nasarawa Local Government Area of Nasarawa State. In this exclusive interview with our correspondent DAVID DARI, he spoke on issues ranging from what prompted him to embarked on construction of motorized bore holes in seven committees within his local government area, which were commissioned, issues of kidnapping activities by hoodlums that have become the order of the day in the area, his perception of Engineer Abdullahi Sule’s administration among others. Except:
Honourable Chairman, we were made to understand that you just commissioned seven motorized boreholes within your local government, what prompted that?
Let me start by thanking God Almighty for giving me this rear privilege to embark on the said water project. I have commissioned the motorized boreholes water projects in Onda, Loko, Odu, VIP Lodge, Council Secretariat and Laminga. As you rightly asked, what actually motivated me to embarked on the said projects was that even before I took over the mantle of leadership of Nasarawa Local Government Area, I realized that there was a peculiar problem with some of our rural communities as regards potable water, and our resolved as government was to see how we can cushion the effect.
So in summary that is what actually motivated me to embark on the projects across the needed places. It will also interest you to note that I did not intend to stop at that rather I will provide more boreholes in all parts of Nasarawa Local Government Area before the end of my tenure.
For the benefit of our teaming readers and record purpose can you tell us the cost implications of the said projects?
Sometimes I find it very difficult to tell the public how much I spent on projects, but because of the fact that you mentioned concerning record purposes, our government is a government of prudence and a government of accountability. So with all sincere intentions, this boreholes water projects cost us not less than N3 million each.
On this note the public would like to be acquainted with your scorecards since assumption of office vis-a-vis the challenges you are facing.
Honestly, when I took over the mantle of leadership, I think the first baptism of fire that I got two weeks of my resumption into office. It was a shocked as there was a serious crisis in Loko Development Area that took the lives of three active men who contributed a lot in solving some of our insecurity challenges that we had in recent past.
I think I have so far got a strong standing as I handled so many of such insecurity challenges. As at the moment I want to tell you that we have achieved a lot as regards bringing peace to this local government area as well as other numerous achievements.
It is no longer news that Nasarawa Local Government Area and its environs such as Udege and Loko Development Areas are known to be haven for hoodlums, especially kidnappers, what is your take on this?
Like I told you earlier, we were able to stop some of the crisis in Loko Development Area, precisely in Guto, Ayisa, Tungan Bakono, Ajegora and other towns within Loko Development Area. The challenges that we are facing now are mostly in Udege Development Area, which the issue of kidnapping for ransoms has become the order of the day. But in our efforts we were able to curtail some of the said challenges.
There’s this rumor making the rounds that Nasarawa Local Government Area staff are in the habit of absconding from their places of work, precisely staff of Udege and Loko Development Areas, how true is it?
I won’t say much on this, but there is an adage that ‘Seeing is believing’, so I would not conclude that there are particular areas where the staff do not go to work promptly, but it is now an issue that we need to investigate to enable us know the truth on the said allegation.
For now, I will not conclude that staff don’t come to work as at when due, because as far as I am concerned the Nasarawa Local Government Area that I am piloting, my staff are giving me their maximum cooperation, and are reporting to their respective places of work. But, if there are some that do not come to office at all, I am assuring you that we will do our investigations, and if we get them apprehended, we will apply the necessary punitive measures.
Engineer Abdullahi Sule celebrated his first 100 days in office, recently as the number one security officer of the state. As a stakeholder in the state, what is your opinion concerning his style of leadership?
I want to sincerely appreciate this question. The first 100 days in office is not enough to judge a new government, but we thank God for his efforts so far. The governor of our dear state – Engineer Abdullahi Sule, I want to believe that he is going on the right track and the successes of the last administration of Senator Tanko Al-makura will be consolidated by the Engineer Abdullahi Sule. That for sure, I am very much optimistic.