HON. MASHOOD MUSTAPHA: THE MAN BEHIND THE FACE
Hon. Mashood Mustapha is a well groomed complete gentleman whose alluring persona radiates a bold, composed and calculating ambience. MM, as he is fondly called by friends and associates, is a man with a touch of finesse and this is reflected in everything around him. As a perfectionist, MM pays attention to details and does not leave any task undone. His honesty and uprightness are his strongest selling point and this has earned him the love and admiration of his political disciples.
Hon. Mashood Mustapha is a force to be reckoned with in Kwara state and today, MM is a key player in Kwara politics. To his opponents, the name MM sends shivers down their spine because of his intimidating persona which is unique in the present political milieu.
To his colleagues, MM is a pragmatic, result-oriented, bold and liberal minded politician as well as a goal- getter. To his friends and family, MM is a kind-hearted, compassionate and soft spoken man whose happiness revolves around making others happy.
To the masses, Hon. MM is a compatriot; a true Kwaran who places the interest of Kwarans at the fore in whatever he does.
To further appreciate the man behind the face, it is however, imperative for us to take a trip down memory lane.
Hon. Mashood Adebayo Mustapha was born on March 11, 1963, to the family of Alhaji and AlhajaMustapha in Ilorin West Local Government Area of Kwara State in the North Central geopolitical zone of Nigeria. His father, Alhaji Usman Mustapha, the Wali of Ilorin was a Finance Commissioner for Kwara State in the Second Republic; while his mother is a retired teacher and matron.
Born into a polygamous home, this child prodigy is the second son of his father whose birth became a harbinger of the birth of many male children to his father. He had a significant upbringing by a disciplinarian father and he made a difference in a polygamous family setting where bickering, petty jealousy and unfair competition usually held sway. Discipline, hard work, excellence, and above all love for one another is the watch word in the Mustapha’s family and this has helped to shape MM into a versatile, sociable and brilliant team player that he is today.
The young MM attended the best of schools around his locality at that time. He was enrolled into Baptist Nursery School between 1968 & 1969, after which he attended Baboko Primary school where he graduated in flying colors and proceeded to Government Secondary School, Omu-aran and later Ilorin Grammar school, Ilorin. Thereafter, he was admitted into Kwara State College of technology now Kwara State Polytechnic where he bagged OND and HND respectively in Business Administration. As a young student, MM was very intelligent and diligent; an attribute which earned him the love of his teachers and lecturers. Upon graduation, he was posted to Kontagora, Niger State to serve his beloved country for the mandatory 1 year National Youth Service Corps (NYSC). His passion for education prompted him to pursue a Masters degree in Legal Studies with specialization in International Law & Diplomacy at Lagos State University in the year 2000.
MM has also attended various seminars, short courses and workshops on Leadership, Project Management, Corporate Governance and others within and outside the shore of Nigeria.
After his NYSC, MM was immediately employed by Eko Hotels (Eko Holiday Inn) as Account Officer II just for a week before he joined the Nigeria Immigration Service (NIS) to build a career which spanned for 17 years before his burning desire for business made him resign voluntarily.
Hon. MM is a pioneer member of the business of importation of fairly used cars in Nigeria popularly known as “Tokunbo” which has flourished till date. He is also into the business of hospitality and real estate.
He began his sojourn into the murky waters of politics in 2001 and since then, he has been swimming with the sharks. Prior to this, he had already been groomed on the nitty-gritty of politics by his father who in an elder statesman in Kwara state; and this is partly responsible for his continued relevance in Kwara politics.
MM played a key role in the 8 years (2003-2011) administration of Dr. AbubakarBukolaSaraki and he served in different capacities as Special Adviser to the Governor on Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters, Special Adviser to the Governor on Special Duties, and Dep. Director General of Mandate Campaign Organization for the re-election of Dr. AbubakarBukolaSaraki as the Executive Governor of Kwara State. He also served as Commissioner for Lands and Housing, and Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources.
In 2011, he contested the House of Representatives position under Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and was elected through popular vote to represent the good people of Ilorin West/Asa Federal Constituency where he brought to bear his wealth of experience in the service of his father land. While in the House of Reps, he was the Deputy Chairman, House Committee on Petroleum Resources (Upstream), member House committee on Marine Transport, Environment, Privatization and Commercialization, Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Steel, Industries, National Population Commission, Drugs, Narcotics and Financial Crimes, HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria Control and Niger Delta Ministry. Hon. MM left an indelible mark in the life of his constituents and his achievements when he was in the House of Reps is unrivalled till date.
His versatility as well as his ability to network well with Honorable Members and Senators, earned him the position of Special Adviser to the Senate President on Inter-Parliamentary Affairs, Protocol and Special Duties.
In 2015, MM was appointed as the Coordinator of the Kwara State chapter of Buhari/Osinbajo campaign organization and he performed excellently.
Aside from his political career, Hon. MM is an astute businessman whose investments in Kwara state has so far created employment opportunities for over 100 youths across the state.
This trail blazer is happily married and blessed with lovely children.
MM’s striking attributes are his greatest survival strategies and this has consolidated his relevance in Kwara political milieu. The political stalwart has some unique acquired and in-built skills which has placed him on high pedestal in Kwara politics.
As a politician, MM’s ability to network well with people across all strata of the social ladder is an added advantage to his political career; reason being that “the calibre of people you relate with will determine how far you will go in life.”
Asides that, MM is widely travelled and over the years, he has carved a niche for himself both nationally and internationally. MM’s penchant for international travels has availed him the opportunity to meet with a lot of Kwarans in diaspora who are authorities in their fields of endeavour and this is certainly an added advantage to his political career.
MM’s ability to galvanize support across all political divide is an attribute that will come handy in his much publicized gubernatorial ambition. Also, his courage, assertiveness, political experience, versatility, and liberal-mindedness will stand him out amongst other gubernatorial aspirants because it is widely believed that only someone with such attributes can move Kwara to greater heights.
The hallmark of MM’s gubernatorial ambition is to foster inclusive economic growth where everyone will reap the dividends of democracy.
MM, being a man who has the interest of the youths at heart, will make youths the centerpiece of his administration if he is elected as the governor of Kwara State in 2019.
Also, women and children will not be left out in his administration because he has over the years demonstrated his love for them through his philanthropic gestures towards them.
MM’s experience as a one-time Special Adviser to the Governor on Local Government and Chieftaincy Matters will come to play if he is elected as the governor of Kwara state because he is versatile on the politics of the traditional institution.
In addition, MM is a renown political strategist, therefore, the political class in Kwara state will benefit immensely from his administration because he will carry them along all step of the way. MM is a grassroots politician to the core because he is always in touch with people at the grassroots and that is an attribute of a good leader. A cursory look at the array of politicians he surrounds himself with shows that not only is he a grassroots politician, he also courts the friendship of grassroots politicians so as to reach out to the people in the remotest parts of the state.
Charity they say begins at home; the unwavering love and support MM gets from his home-base is overwhelming. But that is not to say he does not have foes; far from it! But the good thing is that his supporters outnumber his foes and that is something to be thankful for.
There is no gainsaying the fact that the civil service is the engine room of governance. Therefore, MM’s experience in the civil service is a veritable tool that would be used to alleviate the suffering of the civil servants across the state.
The recent times have witnessed a paradigm shift from dependence on crude oil to the diversification of the economy; and government at both national and state levels have placed premium on the development of the agricultural sector. Therefore, in order to ensure food sufficiency, alleviate hunger, increase exports and generate income in Kwara state, the state needs a governor who is well inclined about the agricultural sector. MM fits perfectly into this position because of his experience as a former Commissioner for Agriculture and Natural Resources. His wealth of experience in the agricultural sector will translate into the development of a robust agricultural sector in Kwara state.
Lastly, MM’s ability to develop a master plan that would change the entire outlook of Kwara state is hinged on his experience as a one-time commissioner for Lands and Housing. MM’s knowledge on rural-urban development cannot be overemphasized, and this knowledge will be instrumental in making important decisions bordering on the physical development of the state.
Hon. MM has used his various political positions to improve the lives of his constituents through his empowerment and employment programmes and his achievements when he was in the House of Reps remains unrivalled till date.
In the education sector, Hon. MM established a fully air conditioned ICT center that is furnished and equipped with Modern Technological Gadget, solar powered with VSAT facilities located at Hiwanu Primary School, Ilorin. He constructed a block of 3 classroom with furniture at MarkazMurtadosMadi area, Ilorin West. He distributed free Jamb and NABTEB forms to over 600 students. He sponsored the conduct of extra moral lesson for some students in Ilorin West/Asa. His love for quality education was exhibited in his international scholarship programmes for a reasonable number of youths to study abroad. Also, over one hundred and twenty indigent students from Universities, Polytechnic, Colleges of Education and Law school from Ilorin Emirate have been assisted financially in the course of their studies.
In the health sector, Hon. MM facilitated the establishment of Primary Health Care Center in Egbejila town in Ilorin West LG. He facilitated the establishment of Primary Health Care Center in Temidire in Asa LGA. He also assisted in the procurement of hospital equipment to be distributed among the public health institutions in Ilorin West and Asa LGs.
In the agricultural sector, Hon. MM facilitated the construction of an irrigation Dam at Elega/Igbokedu area of Otte/Ballah Ward, Asa LG. He also distributed 100 bags of fertilizer to farmers in Asa LGA.
In the power sector, Hon. MM provided a 500KVA transformer to Onikeke Village, Alapa/Onire/Ode-Giwa ward, Asa LG. He also provided a 500KVA Transformer at Olorunsogo area, Oke-Erin ward, Ilorin West LG.
It is a fact that water is the elixir of life and whoever provides water for the people have given them a reason to live. Its against this backdrop that Hon. MM facilitatedthe construction of 40 motorized boreholes and 86 hand pump boreholes to Ilorin West/ Asa LGs.
With respect to youth employment, Hon. MM have helped to secure employment for some youths in national organizations and agencies like NESREA, NASS, NSCDC, NNRA, MINING, FCSC, NTA, NIMASA, NETCO, FIRS, NPC, NTI, NNRA, UITH and many more.
As part of his poverty alleviation scheme, Hon. MM distributed tricycle, Motorcycle, block molding machine, grinding machine, dryer, clipper & generator, freezer, and sewing machine to his constituents. Also, women and children are not left out in his empowerment scheme; he has been consistent with his periodical distribution of Ramadan, Ileya, Christmas and New Year packages which has spanned several years.
Hon. MM has received several awards for his humanitarian and political contributions to the development of his fatherland.
This quintessential man has what it takes to pilot the affairs of Kwara State if he is elected as the Executive Governor of the state. The future of our children will be secured in his hands so let’s give him our unwavering support come 2019.