24 Oct 2014

Akinwunmi Ambode declares for Lagos governorship

Thousands of party members defied Friday’s hot, scorching sun to cheer Akinwunmi Ambode as he announced his intention to run for governor in Lagos in 2015.

Inside a capacity filled Onikan Stadium, in Lagos island, members of the All Progressives Congress, APC, in colourful attires waved brooms and gyrated to loud music belching out from giant loudspeakers.
“The presence of thousands of supporters today is an attestation of the state-wide consultations that we commenced since last year,” said Mr. Ambode, 51, reading from a prepared speech.

“The acceptance and popularity of my candidacy, the great turnout and the fantastic support we have received from every corner of the State and beyond, from all sectors and various religious persuasions confirm that this is a divine moment in the history of Lagos State.

“In recognition of this support, I, Akinwunmi Ambode, in your presence and in the presence of God, formally put myself forward to run for the position of the governor of Lagos state.”
The first rally to be organized by a gubernatorial candidate in Lagos ahead of the 2015 elections, Mr. Ambode said he was putting himself forward because of an inherent self-belief of his qualities to pilot the affairs of the state.
“Lagos is my state and you are my people. I shall work to serve you. I shall never do less. Here and now, I dedicate myself to this task. I shall not flinch nor lose focus,” Mr. Ambode continued during his speech.

“The last fifteen years have witnessed an irreversible growth and development of our great state with a foundation laid concretely by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu between 1999 and 2007. The consolidation and actualisation of that growth, of which we are all living testimonies, have been achieved by the incumbent Governor, Babtunde Raji Fashola (SAN).

“I stand before you today in the spirit of the continuity of excellence that Lagos is known for. My vision and mission is to create a clean, secure and prosperous Lagos State that is driven by a vibrant economy and supported by quality service, equity and justice.”
Over half a dozen candidates are aiming at the Government House at Alausa in 2015, but Mr. Ambode, a former Accountant-General of the state, is widely believed to be the anointed one of Bola Tinubu, a chieftain of the APC.

Not a politician, Mr. Ambode frequently flaunts his public service credentials.
Mr. Ambode promised to run an inclusive government that will cater for the aged, widows, artisans, students, children, the physically challenged, professionals.
“For corporate Lagos, Lagos is open for business, even for greater business. We have the political will to move Lagos to the next level. We are going to face our challenges by ourselves. Nobody is going to do that for us. With our collective will, we will overcome them.

“I call on all Muslims, Christians, and people of other religious persuasions to come out en masse and ensure we vote in a candidate that has the interest of Lagos and Lagosians at heart. A candidate that is passionate about Lagos. A candidate that truly understands the needs of the ordinary people. I am that candidate.”

Credit: Ben Ezeamalu/PremiumTimes

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