The chances of Lagos Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, of emerging as the State governorship candidate of the All Progressive Congress, APC, in the 2019 general election further dimmed on Saturday after over 350 councillors shunned his invitation ahead of the party primary scheduled for Sunday.
Chairmen of local government areas in the state have been publicly associating with another governorship aspirant on the party’s platform, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, believed to enjoy the support of the party’s hierarchy and promoting his candidacy.
Attempt by Ambode to get all the 377 councillors in the state to back his reelection bid may have suffered defeat after a meeting approved by the governor to woo the councillors ahead of the party primary on Sunday was spurned by majority of the invitees.
“This is to inform all the councillors in Lagos State under the All Progressive Congress, APC, that there will be a meeting with the Ambode Mandate Support Group, AMSG, on Saturday, 29th September @ N0 32, Ladoke Akintola Street, GRA, Ikeja. Time is 9am prompt. Announcer: Hon. Olasunkanmi Adekola, PRO Lagos State Councillors Forum,” a Whatsapp message sent to all the councillors and sighted by our correspondent read.
The message by Adekola, a councillor representing Ward B in Mosan Okunola LCDA, however, was not well-received by his colleagues going by their turnout at the meeting, which was presided over by Special Adviser to the governor on Community and Communication, Mr. Sulaiman Omoyele, AKA Oris, who is the DG of Ambode campaign organisation.
Source with inside knowledge of the meeting, said the attendance was underwhelming as most councilors, over 350 of them, stayed away on the grounds of having an axe to grind with Ambode.
“We were crossed with him for spurning all the attempts we made in the past to have an audience with him and this is payback time. He refused to meet with us when we needed him, and now he wants to curry favour with us,” a councilor from Lagos West, who deliberately absent himself from it, told us on condition of anonymity.
It was further gathered that the few who made the meeting are some councillors from Ibeju Lekki Local Government, Lekki LCDA, Epe Local Government, Eredo and Ejinrin LCDAs, all under Epe Division where the governor hails from.
They were alleged to have left the meeting happy with their palms allegedly greased by their hosts.