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Tuesday, July 5, 2022

ACN urges Lagosians to defend their votes

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BEFORE cheering crowds of excited supporters, the Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) yesterday sold its programmes in the three senatorial districts of Lagos State. Party leaders and followers vowed to defend their votes in the April general elections.

They challenged the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP)-led Federal Government to list its achievements in the state in the last 12 years that it has been in power.

Predicting failure for the PDP in the state, they said the party would kiss the dust in the forth-coming elections, reminiscent of 1999, 2003 and 2007.

Prominent party chieftains, including Governor Babatunde Fashola (SAN), his running mate, Mrs Joke Orelope-Adefulire, Prince Tajudeen Olusi, Alhaji Olatunji Hamzat, Cardinal James Odunmbaku, Mrs Oluremi Tinubu, Pa Olorunfunmi Bashorun and Prince Abiodun Ogunleye, who addressed the rallies at four locations, described the PDP as the peoples’ enemy that must be dealt a fatal electoral blow in the interest of democracy.

Fashola, who accused the PDP of plundering Nigeria’s wealth, stressed that only credible leaders can rescue the country from poverty, corruption, insecurity, and stunted economic growth. 

He said: “In recent years, they have squandered over $500 billion and yet you do not have electricity, you do not have petrol; kerosene is expensive. This is the time to use your vote wisely. This is the time to liberate yourself. ACN will liberate you. Nuhu Ribadu and Fola Adeola can liberate you, but you must vote for them to be free.”

The party’s Publicity Secretary, Comrade Joe Igbokwe, explained that the rallies would herald the bigger one slated for Tafawa Balewa Square, Lagos on Saturday. “This is the beginning of what will happen on Saturday. What we are doing is grassroots mobilisation. We will soon know which party is on ground in Lagos,” he said.

As from sunrise, party faithful across the East, West and Central senatorial districts had converged on the four locations.

It was a carnival-like rally. Dressed in branded t-shirts and fez caps, party members waved brooms – the symbol of the ACN – which Odunmbaku said they would use to sweep the feet of PDP leaders who had also come to Lagos for the presidential campaign.

Apart from presenting ACN candidates, who unfolded their plans for their constituencies, party leaders solicited for votes, pointing to the achievements of the Fashola administration across the three districts.

The Central District leader, Prince Oluyole Olusi, led members from the zone to the rally at the Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere, where the Vice Chairman, Prince Adeseye Amingo, presented flags to the candidates for the parliamentary elections.

Speakers at the rally were the senatorial candidate, Mrs Tinubu, Col. R.A. Ajala (rtd), State Publicity Secretary Joe Igbokwe, Cardinal Odunmbaku, Alhaji Ahmed Sodiq and former Finance Commissioner Mr Wale Edun, who is from Eti-Osa Constituency.

Also at the campaign were the wife of Osun State governor, Mrs Sherifat Aregbesola, Hon. Jide Jimoh, Mrs Akinyemi Obe, Hon. Toun Adediran, Hon. Tunji Bello, Alhaji Mutiu Aare, Chief Chris Ekwilo, Hon. Wale Oshun, Pa Odunsi, Hon. Jumoke Okoya-Thomas, Alhaji Yakubu Balogun, Alhaji Rasak Balogun, Mrs Toyin Caxton-Martins, Hon. Mufutau Egberongbe, Babatunde Jimoh, Aliu Kassim, Kassim Alimi, Gbolahan Olusegun and Alao Owolabi.

At the East Central District, Pa Abiodun Sunmola led followers and supporters of the ruling party to the Gbagada Playing Grounds, where the senatorial candidate, Alhaji Gbenga Ashafa, House of Representatives candidates and Assembly flag bearers were presented to the people. 

Party leaders, including Basorun, Prince Ogunleye, Pa Sheik Banire, Alhaji Akanni Seriki, Hon Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Hon. Rotimi Agunsoye,  Hon Kunle Soname, Jibayo Adeyeye and Hon Bayo Osinnowo, urged Lagosians to reject the PDP at the polls.

At the Agege Mini Stadium, the West District Senatorial leader, Pa Hamzat, accompanied by Senator Ganiyu Solomon, Hon Kayode Opeifa, Hon. Taofeek Adaranijo, Hon Gbolahan Hamzat, Hon Kako Aare, Hon Funmi Tejuoso, Hon.Bisi Ayinla, Hon. Muiz Banire, Hon. Abiodun Mafe, Hon Kehinde Okunmuyide and Hon Bisi Yusuf, hosted party leaders and supporters from Alimosho, Agege, Ifako-Ijaye, Mushin, Isolo, Ejigbo and Ikeja constituencies 

At the Volkswagen Playing Ground, where the ACN members from Ajeromi/Ifelodun, Amuwo Odofin, Ojo, Olorunda and Badagry constituencies held their rally, the party leader, Pa Akanni Suarau, hailed the devotion and commitment of the fold, urging them to crown their dedication with a massive vote for the party in April.

The rally was witnessed by Hon. Ayodele Adewale, Hon. Toyin Suarau, Hon. Amida Abudu, Hon. Lanre Ogunyemi and Hon. Dosu Joseph.

Odunmbaku, the chairman of the Lagos State ACN Campaign Committee, who went round the rallies, thanked the party supporters for heeding the call for mobilisation.

“There is no more PDP in Lagos State. PDP will lose the election in April. We should use our brooms to sweep the feet of PDP leaders who are in Lagos for campaign today. We will have a new Nigeria in April. We must liberate ourselves from slavery and the only way to do that is to vote for ACN candidates,” he said.

Edun, who spoke in Yoruba, said: “If you look at the poster of Yeye Asiwaju Tinubu, you’ll see the bold inscription: ‘The time is now’. We have done registration. What is next is the general election. As you trooped out to register, you must troop out to vote ACN in April. Go out and mobilise Lagosians to vote for ACN.”

Olusi thanked the council chairmen and leaders from the 13 local governments for the successful rally. ‘This is the beginning of the struggle for a better Lagos and an improved welfare package for all. We thank God that, in the past 12 years, we have had an orderly, progressive government in Lagos State. It is a showpiece for Nigeria. Lagos has been the federal capital and commercial nerve centre of the country. It will continue to remain so. PDP has controlled the government for 12 years and there is no electricity, water, rail, airways. I want to urge Lagosians to vote for our candidates because our party is tested and trusted,” he added.

Mrs Tinubu, who urged the youth to shun thuggery, enjoined Lagosians to vote for ACN, assuring them that the party’s candidates would work for the people.

Col. Ajala said all the candidates of ACN are responsible and reliable, urging the people to endorse them at the polls. “Fashola has done well. We are not blind in Lagos. He has worked hard for Lagos in the last four years. He will work harder in the next four years,” he added.

Igbokwe said: “We have witnessed 12 years of waste in Nigeria. This must not continue. ACN is proud of its acceptability to all the sections of the country. It is not a sectional party. ACN will provide the right leadership. The failure of Nigeria as a civilisation is the failure of leadership. We have good weather, waters, airspace and environment. But the problem is the human being. The problem is the leadership. Lagos is a template and example of what ACN can do nationwide”.

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ACN urges Lagosians to defend their votes

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