There was a lot of anxiety, and panic immediately after the 25th February election that took place in Lagos. The reason for this was not far fetched. The Labour Party made great in roads into Lagos votes. And the APC realised the need to do something fast before the governorship elections followed. Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu wants continuity, to complete some of the key projects he started. Lagos is the commercial hub of Nigeria and it’s one of the biggest states in terms of population.
So Gov. Sanwo-Olu realised he had a lot of work to do and he began to reach out to many groups to vote for him. He also began to market himself. He began to grant interviews on TV and Radio where he told Lagosians how he is the most competent candidate for the job.
Truly so. Talking about one person with track a record in both private and government sectors, Gov Sanwo-Olu has it all. He had been deeply into the private sector since his twenties. He has also been with the Lagos State government for many years. So he knows how the state runs. He is well experienced in the adminstrative of Lagos even before he became the governor of the state. And that’s why about 10 political parties collapsed there structures for him. The political parties included the Young Progressive Party, (YPP), APP, Action Democratic Party (ADP), Allied Peoples Movement (APM), Zenith Labour Party (ZLP), Social Democratic Party (SDP), New Nigeria Peoples Party (NNPP), NRM and Peoples Redemption Party (PRP), at an event held in Lagos. According to them, Lagos State was best in the hands of a competent and experienced leader like Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu.
Sanwo Olu also got the buy-in of many traditional rulers and Baales in Lagos. This is because many Obas in Lagos are scared of the unknown. Many of the Obas in Lagos after the presidential election which the Labour Party emerged winner in Lagos, many of these traditional rulers summoned an emergency meeting to support the candidate the feel can further promote the unity of the state in Sanwo-Olu. There was aggressive campaigns and awareness in each locality of the state. A few days ago, there was a press conference.
Traditional rulers in the 62 communities in the Eti-Osa Local Government Area of Lagos State have assured Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of re-election ahead of governorship election.
Speaking during a news conference at Ikota, the Chairman of Eti-Osa Baale Forum, Chief Wasiu Ali-Balogun, said that Sanwo-Olu had been fulfilling his promises to residents of Lagos State, hence, their support for his re-election.
Ali-Balogun said that there were lots of irregularities during the February 25 presidential election, adding that security would be beefed up to ensure safety during the governorship election. He, therefore, urged residents of Eti-Osa to put behind the outcome of the presidential election and come out en masse to vote the All Progressives Congress candidates in the forthcoming polls.
“Our incumbent governor is the governor of all the people, anointed Governor, reliable and responsible, hardworking, a listening governor. We are solidly behind the governor, the present administration up to the federal level. “With what happened during the presidential election, there are a lot of irregularities but we just need to come and correct the impression. Elections will come and elections will go, but Eti-Osa Baale Forum will remain one.
“Our governor has done a lot of marvelous jobs that we can easily point to. When we have anything that concerns us particularly the Baales, I can say that he gives good recognition to the Baales in the whole of Lagos State. We called this meeting to advise that those who might be annoyed with the outcome of the last election should forget.
“Let’s forget the past and face the future, because the only thing that we need to do is to appeal to them to forget what anyone did during the past elections mainly because of Governor Sanwo-Olu,” Ali-Balogun said. He called on the residents of the area to mobilise family members, friends, neighbours and everyone to come out en-masse to vote for the governor on Saturday.
Sanwo-Olu needs peace, he wants progress for Eti-Osa, for Lagos State, the country and the whole world.
“We are saying this with one voice that Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, by God’s special grace on Sunday, will be celebrating his return to office for a second term. “If not the rules and regulations in the political circle, we should have endorsed him to be our governor of continuity. “We use this opportunity to congratulate Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu for the victory, which is for everyone of us,” the chairman said.
Also speaking, the Baale of Ikota, Nasiru Laguda said that the Eti-Osa traditional rulers and residents were solidly behind Sanwo-Olu’s re-election and would ensure his victory. “There is no place that you don’t have friends, neighbours and colleagues. I am appealing to all my Baales to go back home and work out their strategies for everyone of us.
“It is not a matter of fighting; we have to call our neighbours, children, community members and everyone to come out en-masse and vote for Sanwo-Olu. “If we come out en-masse, we will be able to deliver the community. Let’s make our families available to vote en-masse for Sanwo-Olu. We should come out on time and deliver our votes for Sanwo-Olu’s re-election,” Laguda said. There was also anxiety among the civil servants in Lagos. Many of the civil servants in Lagos have been told that the possibility of them losing their jobs is very high if Sanwo-Olu fails to win.
Many believe that if the entire members of the Lagos Civil Service alone file out enmasse to vote for Governor Sanwo-Olu, their number is enough to sway the results in the way of the amiable governor. Investigation by the party revealed many civil servants failed to vote at the last presidential election. They simply stayed indoors and tossed their PVCs away somewhere in their rooms. The low turn outs greatly affected APC and they do not want a repeat of that to happen during the governorship election. This is why the governor has been going round talking to various groups of professionals. And from what we heard, the different engagements he had with the civil servants were extremely successful.
One of the things the governor has also done is to pay up about N1.2 Billion pension money owed retirees of the civil service. This development sent the entire pensions community in Lagos in wild jubilation when the news broke. The government, obviously already had plans underway to make the payment possible, but luckily for the governor, the money was made available at a crucial time close to the election. Just as the senior citizens of the state are happy, the governor too would be glad this is happening at a time wjhen he needs their support. And this surely count for something at the last poll.
Not resting on his oars. Governor Sanwo-Olu also has done something that many have found very impressive. He visited various Igbo groups in Lagos. He had been talking to them and trying to market his government and the party to them. The hostilities between the Igbos and Yoruba in Lagos have reached a frigtening level. The Yorubas are angry with the Igbos for trying to vote APC out of power in Lagos and for claiming that Lagos is no man’s land but the governor has assured them that they are safe in Lagos and that nothing will happen to their investments in Lagos. They were obviously humbled by the Governor’s thoughtfulness to reach out to them. They, in turn, have promised to support him as well.
The governor also visited markets that are dominated predominantly by Igbos such as Alaba International market, Computer Village, Ikeja and the ASPMDA Trade Fair in Lagos. Many of the Igbo traders were highly elated to find Governor Sanwo-Olu in their midst. They were impressed by his humility. Considering the no love lost situation between Igbos and Yorubas in Lagos, it surprised them that he could still find it necessary to come down to speak to them.
One great thing Governor Sanwo-Olu did to increase his chances of winning the governorship election is the release of all impounded vehicles seized by the various traffic agencies across the state. The news spread like wild fire that Lagos state government was releasing all impounded vehicles for free. Many couldn’t believe it. Some of them had had their cars seized from them and confined within the walls of the agency for several weeks. Their joy knew no bound when they returned home with their vehicles. Many of them were thankful to God and grateful to Governor Sanwo-Olu for the leniency.
Governor Sanwo-Olu also met with the leadership of the Christian Association of Nigerias Lagos chapter. He spoke with them on the need for the association to support him during and after the electionsa. He was warmly received. The acrimony raised by the APC’s Muslim-Muslim ticket appears to have finally dissipated as they also gave him their word they will support him. He also visited Muslim groups despite not being a Muslim.
He also paid a surprise visit to Mountain of Fire Miracles Ministries. It was at the Power Must Change Hands Service held at the church headquarters at Onike, Yaba. The entire auditorium erupted in wild jubilation as he stepped out to acknowledge the congregation. Not many know that Governor Sanwo-Olu is a member of MFM. And though there was no such thing as a campaign inside the church audiitorium, everybody knew why he was there. And from the warm reception they gave him, he will certainlyu get their support. He also visited a couple of churches too apart from MFM.
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