By Abolaji Adebayo
Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has rallied supports for the presidential ambition of the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, charged every progressive person to support him.
He also urged the Working Committee and other coordinators of Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu (ABAT) Movement at the local government and ward levels to go out and spread the gospel of the presidential ambition of the National Leader of the All Progressive Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu across their communities.
Sanwo-Olu said this during the inauguration of the Working Committee in Ikeja, Lagos on Thursday, saying Tinubu is the best candidate to effectively manage human and material resources for visible progress of the country.
He said everyone must drum support for the Tinubu candidacy, insisting that his achievements in the past stands him out as the most qualified Nigerian to be president in 2023.
The Governor said Tinubu’s qualification rests on his demonstrated capacity in deploying a mix of genius and statecraft to nurture a city-state on the brink to a flourishing economy that it has become, noting that the progress in Lagos remains a visible experiment initiated by the APC National Leader.
The Governor who was in company of his deputy, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, Speaker of the House of Assembly, Mudashiru Obasa, and all members of the State Executive Council said Nigeria had continued to shoulder the burden of the black race, stressing that the country’s transformation into a stable economy would be a source of pride to the black man.
In 2023, the Governor said the country would be in need of a capable leader with progressive ideas to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari and build on the progress recorded by the current administration.
Tinubu’s practicable ideas in governance, Sanwo-Olu said, makes him the most qualified successor and salable choice for the job.
The Governor said: “Our country is the most populous black nation in the world and the responsibility that comes with that is enormous. No doubt that the destiny of the entire black race is tied to the greatness of Nigeria. If our country must be great, we have the responsibility to choose the leadership that will bring about true transformation across every facet of our national life. Who is that rallying figure that should lead us in this journey?
“The answer is deeply connected to our mission and purpose here today. That person must be a detribalised Nigerian and a bridge builder, who has been tested and trusted. A thinker who must sustain the legacy our current president is leaving behind. That person is the reason we are inaugurating this Movement for the actualisation of his presidential ambition. That person is our great leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.
“Let us tell the naysayers and those who are still in doubt that we are ready to work for the realisation of this ambition, because Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is the Number one salable candidate for the president. We will preach this gospel with diligence, dedication and high sense of commitment. Asiwaju is an unfolding success story our nation deserves at this time.”
Sanwo-Olu said Tinubu’s name is synonymous with growth and development, noting that the APC National Leader possessed a Midas touch to positively turn around the resources of the country for general good.
The Governor said the event was to raise foot soldiers, team leaders and cheerleaders who would pursue the Movement’s objectives and cascade down its messages to every voter at the ward level with commitment and passion.
He charged all selected for leadership roles in the Movement to reflect Tinubu’s political ideals of openness and tolerance in their engagement and mobilisation.
He said: “We must see ourselves in line with Asiwaju’s political ideals. To be open to all, tolerate various interests and embrace everyone. We must reflect those ideas of our leader in our utterances and actions. You cannot afford to disappoint us on this mission.”
The ABAT Chairman, Cardinal James Odumbaku, said the forthcoming general election presented another opportunity for Nigerians to make the right choice to keep the country on the path of development.
He said the electorate must get it right by electing a tested and credible leader to steer the leadership of the country, stressing that the movement believed Bola Tinubu remains the right man for the top seat.
He said: “Tinubu is a tested leader to lead Nigeria out of the woods. We will work with passion to ensure he emerge as party candidate and also win the presidential election.”
The former Deputy Governor of the state, Otunba Femi Pedro said that as far back as 2003, he knew that Tinubu would have made a better president, even than former President Olusegun Obasanjo.
He said: “Quote me; come May 29, 2023 I will be at the Eagles Square wearing ‘Asiwaju is President’ cloth.”
He stressed that Tinubu is the man that will transform Nigeria at this critical time.
GAC leader, Prince Tajudeen Olusi described Tinubu as “a genius” in statecraft, saying the APC National Leader is a salable article in the political market.
“We have to be prepared and determined, because the contest would be a battle of might and strength,” the GAC leader said.
The Movement’s Director-General, Alhaji Oyinlomo Danmole, said ABAT structure was different from other support groups set up across the country for the actualisation for Tinubu’s presidential ambition.
Reeling out the organs and structures, Danmole said all cluster groups within the Lagos APC have representation in the movement, with the inclusion of every locality in the State.
The DG said seven-man committee had been set up in each of the 57 local councils in Lagos, with each committee headed by coordinators.
At the ward level, he said the movement maintained similar committee structure of seven persons across the 377 wards, adding that registration to be part of the ward committee would be made open to Lagosians in the coming days.
Other speakers at the event included the former Deputy Governors, Mr. Femi Pedro, and Abiodun Ogunleye, and representative of the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Hon. Dolapo Badru, among others.
The ABAT Movement was conceived and set up by members of Governor’s Advisory Council (GAC) in Lagos, the highest political organ in the state, for the actualisation of the presidential ambition of the former Lagos Governor.
APC leaders across the State’s 57 local councils and a large number of party supporters thronged the event’s venue to lend their support.
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