The All Progressives Congress governorship candidate for Lagos State, Akinwunmi Ambode, received leaders and delegates of Ethnic Groups, Civil Societies and other allied groups at his Gbagada campaign office yesterday, December 18, 2014.
The groups thronged to the Akinwunmi Ambode Campaign Organisation Office in Gbagada to congratulate Mr. Ambode on his emergence as the APC candidate for Lagos State and pledged their support to him for the upcoming elections in February 2015.
Mr. Ambode in his speech assured all present that he was specially positioned to understand the feelings of ethnic and different sectoral groups in Lagos. He shared his story of having had to leave home at the age of 11years to go to Federal Government College, Warri for Secondary School. He described his experience as a child in Warri and how he made friends with people from all parts of Nigeria. This according to him was where his world view was formed through the relationships and friendships he made then.
He also talked about his National Youth Service when he served in Sokoto state with the Central Bank of Nigeria. He stated that his one year in Sokoto gave him a direct appreciation of the Hausa culture and traditions which he would never have had if he had not visited the place. With these experiences, he told the gathering that he has grown to see people not for where they come from or their religion but for who they are and what they can do.
In his words, “we must all work together to make Lagos safe, clean and economically livable for everybody. Lagos is the most cosmopolitan state in Nigeria and Africa. Lagos is Lagos because of all the races and tribes in it. We all make up Lagos, we all have a stake in Lagos and Lagos will work for us.” He promised to cater for all ethnic groups and ensure everybody felt at home in Lagos and had equal opportunities to excel in whatever field they chose.
He said “If I can make it in Lagos, you can too. If Akinwunmi Ambode can become the governorship candidate then your small businesses can grow to become big businesses”. He asked for the support of all ethnic groups and associations to become the next governor of Lagos State. He painted an imagery of his governorship aspiration as one of him as having worked on a construction site called Lagos State as a Labourer, Mason, Plumber, getting to the level of a Supervisor and now seeking to be given the role of the Project Manager. He promised to work for the interest of the people and with the help of God to deliver good governance to all.
Earlier, the Special Adviser to the Lagos State Governor on Politics and Legislative Matters, Hon. Musiliu Folami welcomed the members of the Ethnic Groups and read the minutes of their previous meeting where they resolved to support Akinwunmi Ambode and the APC in next years’ elections. Chief Ayo Opadokun in his address to the gathering told them that the business of the day was to secure the freedom of the people from those who are in the business of making life difficult for the ordinary man on the street. We are in the business of restoring ourselves because we have been dealt with by people who have taken governance. He stated that Akinwunmi Ambode was the person who could protect the interests of all ethnic groups and create opportunities for all to thrive. He asked the groups to go back and in their separate meetings ask their members to support Akinwunmi Ambode to become the next governor of Lagos State.
Over 30 different groups attended the meeting. Among the groups present were Arewa Community, North Central, Ndigbo General, Mile 12 Market, NANS, June 12 Coalition, Igbo Coalition, NURTW, NANTAP, MOMTAN, RTEAN, Taxi Drivers, CISOCON/NLC and many others.