By Ikechukwu Chukwunonso Chukwudi
The name Doris Uboh, when spoken of in different circles of sociopolitical discourse, is discovered to be reputable in the very positive light. From the words of those who know of her, she stands out as enigmatic, and for those who may not have had the similar privilege of knowing her but have heard of her, she comes as passionate about the welfare of the common man.
Rt. Hon Doris Uboh, an American-trained engineer and one-time member of the House of Representatives 2007-2011, is one lady whose pattern of politics has redefined the ideology of service and raised the bar of representation beyond satisfying the desire of constituents. Against the popular pattern of limiting representation to just the confines of a federal constituency, the Nigerian nation today owes its improved workers welfare with respect to salary, wages and enumerations to the passionate activism of Rt. Hon Doris Uboh, the ideal representative.
For the purpose of intellectual engagement and exposure, this piece desires to convey, it will serve if a little on the idea of what minimum wage is and what its concern is.
Minimum wage is the lowest remuneration that employers can legally pay their workers and the price floor below which workers may not sell their labour. Before 2011 in Nigeria, it stood at N8,500 and this translated into identifying the country as one of the lowest paying economies. At different times the organized labour under the then leadership of Comrade Adams Oshiomhole had embarked on several protracted mass actions over the sad narratives which included miserly pay for workers.
The minimum wage of a country goes a long way in dictating the purchasing power of a prominent percentage of the populace and, can therefore, inform foreign investors about the viability of a country’s economy. Overall, the minimum wage of a nation aside being a determinant of an economy’s viability is largely the economic conscience of a nation, and yardstick which measures the gap between the rich and the poor, while also determining the frequency at which wealth can be created for, or by the lower, upper and upper middle classes of society.
The National Assembly carries the mandate of the people by reason of constituent representation, and as is expected, the focus of each of the 360 members will first and foremost centre on the gains for their respective constituencies. However, not considering constituents of Ika Federal Constituency alone, which she represented, Rt. Hon Uboh choose to affect the living standard of Nigerians at all levels irrespective of tribe and religion and societal placement (rich and poor, men and women, private and public sector workers), and the passage of the bill into law which still stands today, announced improved fortunes for the mass of Nigerians.
Rt. Hon Doris Uboh’s ripe aspiration to the Senate amongst other things evokes nostalgia from her years as Member Representing Ika Federal Constituency at the House of Representatives. From 2007-2011 in her first and only stint as a lawmaker, she was able to set a standard of sincere consciousness of the plight and yearnings of her people. It is argued in different quarters that till date, she is the first and only representative who has been able to host projects in all wards within the Ika federal constituency in just four years. From Agbor to Ekwuoma, Umunede to Abavo, Mbiri to Owa, Ute-Ogbeje to Ekuku-Agbor, etc., are testimonials to the effectiveness of her representation which are readily obtainable. Her reach cuts across the various important sectors of society – Education, Health, Financial Aid to Small Business Startups and Human Capital Development, Road Infrastructure and Power.
Curiously, these are the accomplishments that are yet to be rivaled even eight years after she had left the scene. Constituents, inhabitants and settlers of Ika North East and South Local Government Areas dubbed the period of her representation as the golden era of Representative Democracy in Practice in Ika Land.
Today, Rt. Uboh aspires to represent Delta North Senatorial District on the Platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC). Madam Minimum Wage as she is fondly referred, aspires to be given the nod by her people to present their interests on the National scene and further distinguish the Anioma Identity. An advantage she takes into the general elections is the satisfactory representation she delivered in the HOR, which for her has become a standard, that can’t be compromised under any circumstance. Already from Ndokwa, Ika, Aniocha and Oshimili enclaves that make up the senatorial district, excitement and confidence reach fever pitch at the prospect of A Doris Uboh at The Senate.
Rt. Hon Doris Uboh aptly dubs her Senatorial aspiration as the rescue mandate that Anioma people need, in order to correct the negative impression that has been sold to the nation over the past four years through misrepresentation.
Undoubtedly, Anioma needs a representative that carries the wit of a mother, intuition of a woman and wisdom from experience. In this Doris Uboh stands to be counted.
The push to change the narratives for Delta North Senatorial District has come with more clarity which Rt. Hon Doris Uboh, the Madam Minimum Wage symbolizes. Unarguably, this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for reinforcing the true Anioma Identity.
Greatness beckons on Ndi Anioma with Rt. Hon Doris Uboh at the Red Chamber of The National Assembly.