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Participatory Democracy: the Jimoh Ibrahim Perspective

  • Steve Ovirih.

Senator ( Dr.) Jimoh Folorunsho Ibrahim, CFR represents the People of Ondo South in The Senate of The Federal Republic of Nigeria. Aside his membership of numerous quite viable and significant committees of The Senate, he doubles as The Chairman, Senate Committee on Interpaliamentary Affairs ( Worldwide), a position that offers him ample opportunities to deploy his international trajectory as an alumnus of the Presitigeous University of Cambridge, where he bagged his First PhD in Mega Projects and on the heels of which he equally had bagged another PhD in quick succession in War Studies from the reputable British War College. It was no surprise then that the Godswil Akpabio led 10th Senate settled for the choice of the erudite Dr. Jimoh Ibrahim to Chair this all important International Diplomacy inclined Inter Parliamentary Affairs Committee of The National Assembly.

Putting his philosophical presentation at The Ugandan Interpaliametary Session in perspective , it is vintage, cerebral Senator Ibrahim harping on Participatory Democracy and the need to build consensus for Parliamentarians as a business of the role of ‘ presiding officers’ of the Parliamentary systems across the globe.

Jimoh Ibrahim pontificated that ” Parliament will gain a lot from leveraging shared values as this will enhance massive participation in Parliamentary debates. “

The Ondo South Senator and Billionaire business mogul admitted that building consensus will encourage inclusiveness. “When Parliament builds consensus, it will open debates for inclusiveness as excluding even just one parliamentarian’s opinion is quite dangerous; any view excluded could be of significance to a robust Parliamentary debate.”

He informed the Lawmakers from across the globe at the Ugandan session that of significance to consensus building is the opportunity to share from expert opinions on the floor of the parliament, stressing that in most cases the Parliament is filled with lawmakers across disciplines who are informed elite in their respective discipline. ” For instance, Madam Speaker, I have my second Doctoral Degree in War Studies from British War College; so you can imagine the huge disservice that would have been if you had not allowed me to contribute on matters of War and security during the discussion and quite obviously my input on matters of security at all times come from an informed point of view.

” Thus, inclusiveness is important to Democratic practice, which allows all opinions to be expressly presented without bias against any parliamentarian.”

Still stressing the significance of building consensus in Parliamentary culture, the Igbotako born Senator noted that it gives room for Personal relationships among Parliamentarians, strengthens techy advantage and encourages the use of online platforms for the cross fertilization of profound ideas , while adding that diversified issues are better resolved either in The House of Representatives or The Senate as the case may be using the consensus perspective.

Avoiding a one sided narrative, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim, who was in his usual intellectual element in the course of ‘ speaking to the paper’, however raised some challenges militating against building consensus in the hallowed Law making chambers among which are political polarization, diverse political culture and diverse agenda as well as external factors and influences. He noted that tight schedule and very tight time management may operate as constraints to discussing issues exhaustively at Parliamentary sessions.

Jimoh Ibrahim emphasized the effect of building consensus for participatory Democracy thus, ” Democracy and its values require value creation, honor, justice, fairness, restoring just and Democrat order. Against this background, Consensus is needed and The Presiding Officers must key into this polished and refined approach for the globe to enjoy robust and quality Parliamentary deliberations across the Democracies of the globe.”

It will be recalled that in the recent time, Senator Jimoh Ibrahim has kickstarted his statewide consultations across the Local Government Areas of Ondo State as he prepares to contest in The fast approaching All Progressives Congress, APC Gubernatorial Primaries ahead of the November 2024 Governorship election in the Sunshine state.

Senator Jimoh Ibrahim boasts of all the necessary requisite norms of Participatory Democracy and hopes to leverage on the leadership experience garnered over the years, as he flaunts the credibility of the ‘ time tested Aseyori strategy in the course of his consultation tours.

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