Femi Ogbonnikan in Abeokuta
The Ogun East APC governorship consensus candidate and the current Ogun State Commissioner for Commerce and Industry, Otunba Bimbo Ashiru, has pledged to continue with the lofty vision and mission of the building Ogun State, if given the chance to succeed the incumbent in office, come May 29, 2019.
Ashiru, as part of his ongoing consultation towards clinching the gubernatorial ticket of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ogun State for the 2019 general election, made the disclosure in Sagamu, in Ogun East district where he kicked off his consultation tour on Thursday and ended it on Friday at the State Secretariat of the party in Abeokuta, Ogun State capital, where he met with the leaders and chieftains of the party, in a bid to inform them of his governorship ambition.
While addressing the leaders in Abeokuta and Sagamu, Otunba Ashiru promised to continue with the on-going lofty vision of the state governor, Senator Ibikunle Amosun, and the mission to rebuild Ogun State.
“I have been part of this vision since the inception of this administration and I believe so much in it and intend to pursue it to a logical end to the admiration of the people of the state if given the mandate”, he said.
Ashiru, while speaking at the meeting acknowledged the preference of Gov. Amosun for an Ogun West person as his successor but, charged the leaders from the Ogun East senatorial district to consult widely and work together with him, believing that Ogun East Senatorial district will carry the day.
He, however, used the occasion to debunk the rumour flying around that he is the anointed candidate of the governor.
Besides, Ashiru urged the people to shun money politics, an unsavoury trend he said breeds mediocrity, and further promised the leaders an open door policy and good governance devoid of rancour, if given their mandate.
Ogun East Senatorial Chairman of the party, Chief Elias, had earlier commended the choice of Otunba Ashiru by Concerned Elders of the Ijebu and Remo as the choice aspirant of Ogun East before he formally presented him to the State party acting Chairman, Chief Tajudeen Lemboye at the party secretariat in Abeokuta.
Responding after accepting Ashiru, the State acting Chairman of the party, Lemboye commended the Ogun State governor, Senator Amosun for the laudable job he has embarked upon in the State.
“These laudable achievements are visible to the blind and audible to deaf and therefore required the need to have a successor that is capable of continuing what he has started in 2019”, said Lemboye.
The state party chairman, however, implored Ashiru to feel free to go round the nooks and crannies of the state and canvass for support, noting that the party has not zoned the governorship race to any part of the State.
He added that though the governor’s preference is for an Ogun West successor, not withstanding, but he only emphasised that he was expressing his own personal opinion which he is entitled to.
Besides, in Sagamu before the Abeokuta meeting, the State Secretary of the Party, Hon. Toyin Aiyebusiwa, also from Ogun East, enjoined the leaders from the senatorial district to support their own but, added that, as an umpire in the process, he wants to be neutral so as not to be seen as being partial to any of the aspirants from the other senatorial districts.
Aiyebusiwa also urged the people to continue to support the Amosun-led administration which he said has been performing creditable well in the transformation of the State.
Also, Engr. Yomi Ademefun, a former Commissioner for Education in the State and one of the Ogun Central Senatorial leaders in his brief talk, encouraged the aspirant to consult widely on account of capability of doing well if he succeeds the current governor.
However, Dr. Gbolade Oshinowo, a former Special Adviser (SA) to ex-President Olusegun Obasanjo on Political matters, counseled the consultation train made up of almost all the state party executive members and senatorial leaders on the need to throw their support for the candidature of Ashiru to clinch the 2019 Ogun State governorship ticket.
Oshinowo remarked that Ogun East has always given its support to Ogun West in its quest to occupy the governorship seat, since the creation of the State but claimed Ijebu-Remo cannot be blamed for the Yewa/Awori unsuccessful past attempts.
He concluded that, by seeking support of the leaders for Otunba Ashiru is borne out of the longstanding gentleman arrangement, that it is the turn of Ogun East Senatorial District to produce the next governor.
He further reiterated the commitment of leaders of Ogun East to continue to consult widely, in order to ensure the victory of their own, Otunba Ashiru.
Aside Alhaji Tajudeen Bello, the National leader of the party who was also on ground at the State Party meeting to receive the aspirant, other prominent leaders of the Party who accompanied Ashiru to the meeting were Chief Bisi Rodipe, Chairman, Bisrod Systems, Chief Dawodu, Chief Olusoga Adenusi, Chairman, Aco Estate, Chief Bisi Adesanya former Chairman, Coca-Cola International Nigeria, Hon. Tokunbo Oshin, former Deputy Speaker, Ogun State House of Assembly, Otunba Jare Dada, former General Manager, OGTV, Prof. Toyin Ashiru, an elder brother of the aspirant, Otunba Toyin Okeowo and Prince Segun Aderibigbe, the Secretary of the Concerned citizens.