Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
There was an unprecedented mammoth crowd in Abeokuta, Ogun State yesterday when the Allied People’s Movement (APM) flagged off its campaign and adopted President Muhammadu Buhari as its presidential candidate for 2019.
It was also a day 60 political parties in the state adopted the APM candidate, Adekunle Abdulkabir Akinlade as their governorship candidate for 2019.
The party also formally presented Akinlade and his running mate, Princess Adepeju Adebajo to the people.
Many speakers at the event confessed they had never seen such a huge crowd at the Moshood Abiola Stadium, even as many groups and associations, including the Progressive Obas of Ogun Central senatorial district, the National
Association of Nigerian Student (NANS), National Union of Roads Transport Workers (NURTW),the Association of Commercial Motor Cycle Riders of Nigeria (ACCOMORON), representatives of 60 political parties, Hausa, Igbo and non-indigene associations, who took turns to deliver goodwill messages and announced their adoption of Akinlade as their candidate for the 2019 governorship election.
The traditional rulers said, as leaders of Ogun Central senatorial district, they support a governor of Yewa extraction in 2019 because it will promote unity and fairness in Ogun State. Members of the NURTW and ACCOMORON expressed support for APM because its government will continue the infrastructure development programme of Governor Amosun that has enhanced their business in the state. Students said they support Akinlade because he and his running mate, Princess Adebajo, with be the faces of youths in the government.
Akinlade, in his speech, expressed joy at the massive turnout for the flag-off and expressed his commitment to continue the mission to rebuild Ogun state; started by the administration of Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
The lawmaker also said his government will continue the infrastructure development programme of senator Amosun and identified what would be priorities of his government to include quality free education, healthcare service delivery, value-chain agriculture, integrated rural development and youth development driven by ICT, skills acquisition and entrepreneurship.
Akinlade said a government headed by him and his running mate, Princess Adebajo, will ensure even development and unity of all parts of the state. He traced the origin of the APM in Ogun to the injustice meted to him and winners of the primary elections in the APC by some forces outside the state who he said are desperate to hijack the government of the state and use it for their selfish purposes.
He singled out President Muhammadu Buhari as a leader who stood for truth and justice while some forces in the party frustrated all efforts at making the choice of members of the party in the state count.
He said the achievements of President Buhari, which included removing Nigeria from the list of pariah states due to corruption in official circles among others, account for the decision of the APM in Ogun State to adopt him as the party’s presidential candidate for the 2019 election.