Hon. Chris Usulor is the Chairman House Committee on Environment ,Ebonyi State House of Assembly. A two-time member of the House, Usulor is undoubtedly one of the leading voices of the current Assembly. He represents Ezza South constituency on the platform of the Peoples Democratic Party(PDP). In this exclusive CHAT with UNITY TIMES AGBO Sunday, he expressed confidence that President is hale and hearty and will come back healthy to deliver on his mandate.
The Peoples Honourable,the state of president Buhari’s health has been a great concern to a number of Nigerians and given his recent medical trip broad which has generated rumours of his death as well as reported pressures on the Vice President to resign, the nation appears to be sitting on a keg of gunpowder .What is your take on the matter?
I am very confident that there is nothing wrong with Mr President. It has not been established that he is very ill neither has anybody says that the president is dead. There are just mere rumors and this is not the first
time there are having such rumors about the president of this country. If anything should happen to Mr president, God forbid, constitutionally the vice president takes over, there is no two ways to it. It had happened before and it may happen again if there is such thing but we are all praying for Mr president to be very healthy and come back to office to deliver on the mandate given to him by Nigerians.
Former Senate President ,Ken.Nnamani, Chief Jim Nwobodo and many other powerful PDP chieftains from the south east have joined the likes of Orji Uzor Kalu and Ifeanyi Uba in APC with many of them promising that there will deliver the whole south east to APC come 2019. What does this portend to your party,the PDP in the zone ?
Because few people defected to APC is it enough to write off PDP in the south east? PDP is still a party to beat in the south east. PDP is Ibos and Ibos are PDP, it is like a tradition in the south east. All we are saying
is that for now we are members of the people’s Democratic Party. If the leader of the party in the state, the governor David Umahi ,decides to move to the APC, we all will move with him since we have the same ideology.We
were all elected on the platform of ‘Divine Mandate’ Divine Mandate policy trickles from the governor to the smallest position in the state. For now we are members of the PDP and PDP is the party to beat in the state and in the whole South East come 2019.
Are you foreseeing the possibility of the governor defecting to APC?
There are no signs that he will defect to APC for now.I just used it as an example that in case he decides to join APC that we will follow him as our leader and support him.
You were among some members of the House who were said to have visited an APC chieftain and former Governor of Abia State, Dr .Orji Kalu,during the Yuletide . We heard that the incident caused tension in the House which resulted to alleged subtle moves to suspend you and other members over the incident .What actually happened ?
I was among the people that met Orji Uzor Kalu in a ceremony in Bende his hometown not his house. It was a coincidence per say, we met him in a ceremony in Bende in Abia state. So, there was no formal meeting in his
house and there was no such thing. I don’t even know that they planned to suspend us from the Ebonyi state house of assembly because as far as am concern, I did not commit any offence and I know Orji Uzor Kalu earlier than now.He was a very good friend of my late father, Senator Vincent Usulor .So even tomorrow, if I see Orji Uzor ,I will still greet him, I will still say Hi to him, I am a PDP, I did have any meeting with Orji Uzor. The picture they are spreading on Facebook and other social media was taken in that ceremony. They were so many cameramen there ,anybody could have taken the picture.We just attended a party; there was no strings attached.
As a two-term member of this Honourable house and having worked under two or three previous speakers , what is your assessment of the current speaker and his leadership style?
My speaker, Rt Hon Ogbonna Nwifuru, has been a very good and transparent leader cum gentleman. There has been no complaint whatsoever from the members. We are very satisfied with his leadership qualities, I know as a human being he will not be one hundred percent perfect, but in all, it is a learning process we are supporting him and we will keep supporting him till the end of the tenure and I pray that God should be with him to keep leading us the way he has been leading us His transparency, accountability and probity is second to none.
In the last House of assembly,there were a lot of controversies that even snowballed into the impeachment of the speaker. Much of that incident has been shrouded in secrecy even to this point.What was the reason behind all
Then, we were in a learning process .But apart from that ,there were much insincerity on the part of the then Speaker. Expectedly, many things that transpired needed to be correct. You can’t just wake up and say you are
impeaching a speaker .There must be something that will push you to that end . when you avoid certain things and you are pushed to the wall you react, for you to be speaker of the House ,you are just first among equals so you should treat your members like you all are the same the way the current speaker is treating us .If you keep riding on a high horse and you hang your hands as if you are god, members will rise against you it is just as simple as that .But so many issues came up that time which I might not elucidate here today but we pray it does not happen again.
2019 is fast approaching and there has been rumours here and there of your plans to up your game.Are you planning to return to the House of Assembly for the third time?
No.I am going to The Senate. I will contest for Ebonyi Central Senatorial Seat come 2019.And I will contest under my party ,the people’s Democratic Party(PDP).
You know a position like the senate seat is not a child’s play , how prepared are you for the contest ?
I am very prepared .I am extremely prepared, morally, spiritually, physically and financially , I am prepared for it.
What if your party ,the PDP, fails to give you a ticket what would you do?
They can’t fail to give me ticket because I will win on the ground if they conduct primaries.
How could you describe your journey into politics?
I don’t know how to describe my journey into politics , but I know I am from a political family .My late father was a Senator of the Federal Republic .so I worked closely with him while as a Senator and politician.so it is natural that I pick interest in politics.
What are those values you learnt from your late father as a politician which are helping you today?
I learnt truth and steadfastness.I learnt to be committed to whatever I believe in. when decisions are taken you don’t waiver ,once you believe in a cause you stand by that cause till the end that is what I learnt from my
In Ezza south where you come from we are aware that there are two opposing political camps existing there and you belong to one of them -known as the Ikenga Movement . What is cause of the the factions?
Quite well we had two camps but we have resolved, no more camps in Ezza South. I think what caused the problem is not very identifiable .Just that people who felt like this guy has been in this politics they want to take it for so long came up with blackmail, falsehood and bring up rumors that were untrue. When they come to me they will tell me this person did this and when they go to the reps member they will tell him I did this just to make an inroad so they succeeded in causing disaffection and disharmony amongst us but as it stands now we are resolving and by the special grace of God we will come back together.
What is your message to your constituents?
They should keep supporting the government in power and they should thank the governor for giving them dividends of democracy he has done enormous works especially in my constituency where they gave us street light, roads, electricity and other things. I marvel when I see the level of project ongoing considering the economic problems we have in the country when every state is being declared bankrupt, but the governor is working, I marvel at that. Sometimes I tell people that criticize the governor that it is even a magic that he is working and I equally encourage them to support him and praise him for the one he has done and give him a constructive criticism in
the one he did not do and equally call him or send messages to him and advise him on the ones he did not do well. The governor knows that I am that kind of person who tells him oga you did not do this one. So I encourage them to be faithful with the government.