The race to Alausa on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC) for the 2015 poll took an interesting dimension on Thursday, as the Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Osuolale Akiolu, openly endorsed the candidature of former Accountant-General, Mr Akinwumi Ambode, declaring that he (Ambode) was the choice of God, his and elders in the state as the next Lagos State governor.
The first class traditional ruler, who made it clear that he was fearless and quite bold, gave the endorsement at a book launch in honour of the APC governorship candidate, which took place at the Civic Centre, Victoria Island, Lagos.
The event was attended by Dr Arthur Warrey, who represented the national leader of APC, Senator Bola Ahmed Tinubu; the Secretary to the State Government (SSG), Dr (Mrs) Idiat Oluwaranti Adegbure, who represented Governor Babatunde Fashola; Dr Yemi Osibajo, Senator Fashinro, Alhaji Akeem Seriki (Bamu), Mr Ayo Opadokun; traditional rulers, including Oba Adewale Bakare Elegunshi, the Alara of Ilara, Oba Hakeem Adesanya, among others.
Speaking at the event, Akiolu, who noted that only God chooses leaders and that the APC would still hold its governorship primaries, however, vowed that no non-indigene, no matter how highly placed, would rule over him as governor of Lagos.
“For me, Osuolale Aremu, a son of an Ewekoro traditional ruler, will not come and become a governor where I am. I am not afraid to say that and I don’t hide my feelings,” he vowed.
This is just as he debunked the rumour doing the rounds that Ambode was not from Epe in Lagos but Ilaje in Ondo State, declaring that the APC governorship aspirant was not an Ilaje but a true Lagosian.
Speaking on the occasion, the APC National Leader, Senator Bola Tinubu, lauded Ambode for what he described as his financial wizardry put into use during the time the funds of Lagos was seized by the Federal Government, saying it was about good and accountable leadership.
Tinubu also said it was about sacrificing one’s comforts for the growth and development of the state.
The monarch spoke extempore and text of his speech reads: “Only God chooses leaders. You will still go for your party primaries to pick your candidate, but what God and elders say must be held sacrosanct. When you see a weedling dancing on water, what is making it do so is underneath. I have not been found often coming out to speak outside, it is an Oba that we crown not age.
Recall that there have been reports lately that Ambode has been chosen by a National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Ahmed Tinubu, to take over the mantle of leadership from the present governor, Babatunde Raji Fashola, in 2015.
It was sometimes reported to be enmeshed in paternity mess with allegation of impregnating one Biola who bore him a son. Ambode was reported to have abandoned both mother and child.