Rivers: Today’s politicians are gold-diggers than servants — Tende

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…Says employment is panacea to insecurity

Barth Ndubuwah,Port Harcourt

A chieftain of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Rivers State and former chairman of Ogu/Bolo Local Government Area, Hon. Mina Tende has described the present crop of politicians in Nigeria as more of gold-diggers than public servants.

Tende made the statement in an interview with journalists in Port Harcourt. According to him, during his days as Council Chairman he was sleeping in the office,just to serve his people,but today he said Council  Chairmen rarely go to work.

He boasted that during his tenure as Council Chairman, he awarded and completed several landmark projects, regretting that the reverse is the case today.

“Today’s Politicians are more of Gold-diggers than public servants.They lack commitment and passion to serve the people, hence their poor performance.

“I prepared before I joined politics, having being a successful businessman. So at that level I was ready to deliver dividend of democracy to my people and I did.

“Then, the councils or chairmen were competing among themselves in performance,unlike today,” Tende said.

He dismissed claims that the failure of chairmen was due to paucity of funds, stressing that nothing has changed in terms of funding.

The APC stalwart insisted that it is a matter of mindset and has nothing to do with availability of funds.

“Council Chairmen should be held responsible for their failure. The present governor of Rivers State, Nyesom Wike was chairman then, so he knows what I am talking about and I don’t think he would interfere with local government allocation. Council chairmen should be proactive in the discharge of their duties,” he said.

“Why can’t councils or states in the South go into ranching, it’s a lucrative business. It shouldn’t be left in the hands of a section of the country. Even cashew nut has a lot of economic benefits. If the South East governors set up a cashew factory, it could feed almost the entire region, plus its employment generation capacity.

“Councils can go into partnerships with one another to bring development to their people. It’s a matter of organization and planning. Employment is panacea to insecurity in the country,” Tende emphasized.

The former Ogu/Bolo Council Boss also said that education has nothing to do with the poor performance of politicians today, especially local government chairmen. According to him, most of them have masters or even PhDs,so education is not the problem.

He equally dismissed claims that poverty breeds corruption.

“People are corrupt not because they are poor  or rich, but because they want to be corrupt,” he said.

On whether he is still a politician,Tende said, “ I am a member of APC. I’m still a politician,but I’m in abeyance in politics right now.The reason is that what we are seeing today is not what we bargained for,” he posited.