Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the APC National Leader, on Friday openly endorsed the aspiration of Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu to run for a second term in office.
The development has put to rest initial doubts that Sanwo-Olu might not get the nod of the APC leader to re-contest the governorship election next year.
At the party’s stakeholders’ meeting at Adeyemi Bero Auditorium in Alausa on Friday, Tinubu physically raised the hands of Sanwo-Olu and Hamzat in approval of their bid to continue in office beyond 2023.
The Governance Advisory Council (GAC) in Lagos had earlier supported Sanwo-Olu’s bod to run for office again in 2023.
Tinubu’s endorsement of Sanwo-Olu and Hamzat has also laid to rest the speculations in some quarters, especially some online news platforms few days ago that the APC National Leader dumped Sanwo-Olu for a former Permanent Secretary in the Lagos State Civil Service, Mustapha Olorunfemi.
Tinubu said the Governor and his deputy have built an unbreakable team to raise the bar of excellence in governance and service delivery in the state, with visible achievements and progress to show for their efforts. This, the APC National Leader said, earned the duo the opportunity to return for second term, and not a blank endorsement, which many politicians sought.
Tinubu, a leading presidential hopeful on APC platform, said Lagos under Sanwo-Olu’s leadership had remained a state of pride for residents and other Nigerians who crave responsive governance and progress.
He said: “We have a brilliant governor at the helms of affairs, who is supported by his deputy to build an unbreakable team that has raised the bar of excellence in governance in Lagos. I specially thank Dr. Hamzat, who has been a very good assistant and a pillar of support to the governor.
“Sanwo-Olu with Hamzat has raised an impenetrable team. I commend both of you and all members of the cabinet. You have all done wonderfully well and I must say that I am very proud of you.”
The raising of Sanwo-Olu’s hand by Tinubu was preceded by a motion moved by the Vice Chairman of APC (Lagos East), Hon. Saidat Oladunjoye, for open endorsement of the governor by the party’s leadership. The motion was seconded by member representing Alimosho Constituency in House of Assembly, Hon. Kehinde Joseph.
The APC National Leader, however, said the party in Lagos would not prevent any aspirant vying for any position from testing their strength at the primaries, noting that all candidates that would be fielded by the party across elective positions must go through a delegate electoral system.
Tinubu said: “Aspirants who are showing interest in positions from House of Assembly to governorship, go and get your forms; you are going to contest primaries. There will not be any favouritism in the primaries.”
Speaking during the stakeholders meeting, Governor Sanwo-Olu disclosed that Asiwaju Tinubu paid the N50million fee for APC Expression of Interest and Nomination forms for his second term bid.
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