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The sincerity with which an act of charity is performed is the difference between hypocrisy and altruism. We have in recent times come across conditional kindness, one that places so much demands on the beneficiary in the form of unreasonable reciprocity to the benefactor. It is this spec of charity that greets the penultimate year of electioneering, people suddenly realize the need to feed the poor and share despicable pittance to them in the believe that they would translate to massive support at the polls. It is this sycophancy that has been christened, in some quarters, the “stomach infrastructure”.
To Chief Idiga Felix, charity is way beyond the needs of the stomach. It is a holistic approach to unconditionally solving the fundamental problems of the needy, converting him to a giver and an active player in the socioeconomic advancement in his immediate society and beyond. It is more of empowering his mind and setting it on the path of self actualization, which must come in form of teaching a man how to fish and providing him with the net and/or hook to make his first catch. That way, he not only has fish to eat, he goes on to provide fish for his family and return the excess fish to either the trade pool of the Society or enlarges the coast of mother charity.

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As philosophical as this may sound, it bears the most fundamental solution to mitigating the scourge of poverty in every serious minded Society. This is the message of Chief Idiga and thrust of his philanthropy through the JAFAC foundation. As a business man who started from the lowest ebb of sole proprietorship, providing data management services in a single room office space, Chief Felix has a first hand understanding of the teething challenges that confront Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMEs) in a developing country like Nigeria with too many infrastructural odds that inhibit growth. Little wonder, he has redefined the concept of “small”. Nothing is actually small, is one of the philosophies that governs his empowerment drives and programs.
As paltry as 5,000 Naira appears, the reality remains that some of the subsistence trades that cater for most families are some thousands low in their capital base. That banana seller, pepper hawker and other sundry commodities sold at street markets and local markets may require this paltry 5,000 thousand Naira to start up or even break even – this is how powerful “small” can be. Thousands of the beneficiaries of the JAFAC Foundation have come to appreciate the power of small but consistent growth in business, and this has changed the fortunes of many families in unimaginable ways.

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The problem with legislative leadership within the Nigerian context is the dearth of policy oriented legislation, a clear absence of peoplecentric representation where the legislator appropriates more to himself and less to the constituents who should be the pivot and focal point of his representation. Thus, our quest for democratic consolidation must include the reordering of priorities in this regard, placing the people and their welfare first and providing enabling legislations that would address the remote and proximate causes of social problems.
For Chief Felix Idiga, public service would mean influencing the laws to serve the public, not a few privileged persons. It means legislating on the power of “small”and empowering constituents with the seeds to start small in their chosen trade or craft. It means more of the people and less of the legislator. This rare thinking remains the distinguishing factor between Chief Idiga and every other candidate across party lines jostling to represent the good people of Orlu/Orsu and Oru east Federal Constituency. His proven capacity in this regard is sufficient evidence that he will do much more with the power of public confidence.
This is the time to get to the roots of perennial poverty and address same with the power of “small”. To the good people of Orlu/Orsu and Oru east Federal Constituency, Chief Idiga Felix is saying, “let’s start SMALL in a big way”.

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