It’s three official years today that Dr Ibrahim Yahaya Oloriegbe was inaugurated as the Senator representing the good people of Kwara Central at the National Assembly. It also means that it remains one year for him to take a bow in style while another person will take over from where he is going to halt. One fact is that people of truth have seen how the man has been changing the face of legislative representation from what it used to be, and, the unpopular but standard template he is setting will hence be the yardstick through which his successors and colleagues from other parts of Kwara State will be assessed by their constituents.
If legislative representation is about serving efficiently the interest of one’s constituency, State and the Nation as a whole, the medical Doctor turned politician has indeed proven himself worthy of the mandate given to him as a successor of a then Senate President. With his unprecedented performance and the legacies he is going to leave behind after the end of his tenure comes this day next year, he deserves medals and all accolades we may think of.
Albeit at the beginning of his tenure, many people didn’t give him benefit of the doubt when he vowed to outperform his predecessor, the record of his performance in three years has nevertheless shown his proclamation to be more than just a brag.
Using the right metrics for assessing the legislature impacts in a democratic system of government; Legislation, Executive Oversight and Representation, Sen. Oloriegbe ticked all the boxes and earned unreserved commendations.
Without a need to unnecessarily waste time and ink with the list of what he achieved that stood him out amongst others that have represented the Senatorial District, they are all in public, a quick search for the right keywords on the internet will link one to everything about the man, the impacts of his representation will no doubt outlive not only his tenure but also his existence as a living soul.
What counts for Oloriegbe as achievements as Senator are not the momentary dividends that our people are accustomed to — The empowerment. The classrooms, clinics and roads construction or renovations. The financial support to groups and individuals and other cosmetic pet projects which an average well-to-do individual can do. What will count for that ebullient man are: the impacts of his legislative prowess and lobbying dexterity that gave birth to the first Federal Neuropsychiatric Hospital in the whole of North-Central Geopolitical Zone, located in Budo-Egba town in Asa LGA which will not only revolutionized the Mental Health care in the country but also provide jobs opportunities and economic booms for the people of his State; the National Health Insurance Authority Act that aims to make health insurance mandatory for the people of Nigeria as well make healthcare accessible at zero cost for the vulnerable; the proposed Federal College of Agriculture and Federal College of Education that Kwara State had lost to Kogi State since 1992; the first Ilorin Emirate Mobile Health Clinic ambulance that will be taking healthcare to the grassroots; the Comprehensive Health Centre located at Idi-Isin which has been affiliated to University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital in order to make it more beneficial to the populace; the over two hundred constituents whom he helped secured pensionable jobs at different Federal Government Agencies; other legislative proposals sponsored to reform the Nigerian health sector amongst others.
According to Billy Graham, he said, “The greatest legacy one can pass on to one’s children and grandchildren is not money or other material things accumulated in one’s life, but rather a legacy of character and faith”. This quote fittingly described Dr Oloriegbe whose legacies as Senator are not what anyone, in public office or not, can do provided there is a fund, but the produce of his brilliancy and sagacity which restored for Kwara Central and Kwara State as a whole, the glories that have been longtime lost.
His brilliant performance might have not earned him a return ticket to continue his diligent services to Nigeria due to the bitter politics we play in this clime, yet, they have however shown him to the world that, indeed, there is an exceptional and quintessential resource person from the ancient city of Ilorin that is capable of turning things around if entrusted with public service responsibility in future. This largely formed part of the sympathizers’ commendations, recommendations and validations when the news of his second term denial through conspiracy came to the public.
As a man of strong faith, Oloriegbe has moved on and left behind, all that happened to him from the primaries. His strengths are now focused on his remaining months as a lawmaker, this will be effectively used to serve much better than before. And definitely, he will do so without fear or favour.
I will like to use this medium to appreciate all lovers of the truth and dispassionate lovers of developmental politics over pecuniary gains for their unwavering support to the man called Oloriegbe. They stood to be counted when it matter to do so against a popular gang-up, posterity will surely give accounts of their objectiveness.