Recently, precisely on Friday October 9, 2015, the National Assembly Tribunal Sitting in Lagos State, affirmed the victory of Hon. Tony Nwulu a member representing Oshodi/ Isolo Federal Constituency 11, Lagos State. Daily Sun engaged the dynamic leader, young entrepreneur, philanthropist, National Coordinator, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) National Youth Advocacy. In this interview, the Lagos born law maker spoke to us about his life as a politician, his fair share of poverty, experiences at the tribunal, his constituency, broadcasting business and vision for Nigerian youths among other interesting issues.
The National Assembly Tribunal sitting in Lagos State just affirmed your victory as the elected member representing Oshodi/ Isolo Federal Constituency, how do you feel?
It’s a victory for the constituency, I must appreciate my constituents immensely for standing by me and remaining steadfast through the tribunal. I will always return the gratitude to them for identifying with me as their own. And I also call on my opponent who is my brother to join me, let’s move the constituency forward without any prejudices, because we are one. However, we have no victor and no vanquished, everyone is a winner, including those who lost the election.
Could you share some of your experiences, while the case was at the tribunal?
Constitutionally, he has the right to take his matter to court, if he feels aggrieved or there were any form of irregularities perceived, which you cannot take away from him. Which is the duty of the court to look into the matter, which the honourable tribunal has dismissed the petition as lacking basis on the ground that there were no evidences to defend their claims. Honestly, it shows truly that Nigeria judiciary system is still at work and they represent the last hope of the public.
Did you ever envisage any fear of losing to your opponent?
It was not about fear, because if you envisage fears, it means there were things you didn’t do right, then you are afraid. But, certainly, no matter what you do, there would be anxiety, which goes with anything in life. We had cases of corrupt elements in the judiciary and when it decides to get corrupted, then justice is truncated. I haven’t heard cases of some judges being dismissed, because of illegality it could make you get worried and believe in your creator to deliver the final judgement.
Could you tell us how your journey into politics started?
I have been the national coordinator of People Democracy Party National Youth Advocacy. It’s a youth-based group in PDP. I have always loved politics and wish to address issues differently. I originated from same constituency you call the common people. Because, I have experienced poverty, so I understand what it means to be poor, when there should be enough to support the people. I recall vividly, how we were addressed as ordinary Nigerians those days. So, I have been part of them, and I know their pains. I have felt the helplessness of the youth. And to exercise my service to the people is through politics, which motivated me to join politics. So, the journey began when I got the mandate from almighty God to run for this elective position.
You have been involved in philanthropic activities, does it have anything to do with your growing up experiences?
In fact, I was not born with a spoon! My parents were the average Nigerians. I had my fair share of soaking garri as meal. As a youth, it’s was a struggle for survival, believing in God to liberate us from poverty. So, whatever level I have attained today, was as a result of hard work, grace of God and perseverance. Having experienced sufferings, it’s hard for me to pass by someone suffering and never lend a helping hand. Recently, I visited Isolo General hospitals as God led me and paid the fees of over 200 patients. Honestly, it was not about the fees, but their pains. I wept seeing several cases, women whom their husbands couldn’t discharge from hospital after child birth; there were women who were supposed to undergo caesarean sessions and surgical operations, but money delayed them, and God led me to touch their lives.
What were the initial challenges you encountered, before getting to where you are today?
We are still faced with challenges of the old people not giving the youths opportunities to grow in the system. Nigeria is recycling the old people, which is not good for the growth of the nation. I believe when people grow old, they should give way for the youths to drive the country forward. But, in a situation where the old men have refused to allow the youths to express their leadership qualities, it becomes an issue. Imagine, the same old people who said the youths are leaders of tomorrow are now telling us they were referring to our children. Ironically, when you go to their homes, everything you see them do is being handled by the youths, either their children or employed ones.
Nigeria youths are protesting the non-inclusion of the youths in the ministerial list, what is your take?
It’s a shame at this jet age, there are no inclusion of the youths on the list. Where is Nigeria heading without identifying the youths? And we pray it would not lead to a revolution. We have brilliant, honest and hard working youths qualified to become ministers. Sincerely, I believe the youths should be given opportunities to drive this country to the next level.
You were recently appointed chairman, PDP Youth Restricting Ring Committee, what is this about?
Well! It’s a committee set up by the PDP. I was actually appointed the chairman, it related to what I said earlier, about youths inclusiveness. In PDP, we are driven with passion of involving the youths in our activities. Notwithstanding, the time has come for a Nigerian youth to become the president. So, it’s to further create opportunity to allow the youths to participate in the mainstream industries. Also, contest for elective offices, get supported and being voted for. We believe that PDP can be placed on the shoulders of the youths, while the party can be piloted and our fathers guide us with their wealth of wisdom.
You were the first Igbo man to win a political election in Lagos. How were you able to climb the ladder of success?
I must commend my Yoruba people for accepting other their ethnic regions despite where you hail from; no tribal differences, being able to draw the lines of a true Nigerian, which the United States is known for. I want to applaud my brothers for their magnanimity and being nationalistic in thoughts. My incumbent who was defeated is a Yoruba man and Yorubas voted for me; there was no favourism, which would have been to their benefit. Personally, I don’t believe in tribalism, which was the result of my success. However, Oshodi/Isolo Federal Constituency is a place of unity in diversity.
Your constituent has recounted some of your performances in the past 100 days in office, what are your greatest achievements?
My achievements are at the public domain, people of my constituency can attest to my performances. We have provided buses for all public schools in Oshodi/Isolo Federal Constituency 11, Lagos State that convey students to and fro their respective schools. I have equiped the 32 public schools in my constituency with functional computers in their laboratories. And we have also given educational materials to primary schools.
Lagos State is governed by an opposition party, as a PDP lawmaker, how are you coping with the leadership of the state?
My brother, the governor of Lagos State is doing his best. Though, we are in different parties, he has his manifesto, and I cannot judge him. He made promises to Lagosians and I believe we are partners working toward a greater Lagos. So far, we have a good working relationship with him. Recently, Lagos has requested for legislative support and approval for $200 billions world bank loan. It’s commendable to move Lagos to become the dream mega city in Nigeria. Moreover, as a member of PDP in an APC governed state, I had to drop party differences to become a partisan politician after the election. As the number one citizen of my constituency, I represent every member of my constituency. So, I don’t segregate anyone irrespective of party.