Elders and stakeholders of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Lagos Mainland (West) have petitioned the party’s National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, alleging total marginalisation in political offices allocation since the return to democratic rule in 1999.
The petition, jointly signed by Baba Babs Fashina and Akibu Bankole, Chairman and Secretary respectively of Lagos Mainland West Elders Forum, was also copied to the Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babajide Olushola Sanwo-Olu and the entire Governance Advisory Council of the state.
To address their grievances, the Elders and stakeholders said that in the interest of justice, fairness and equity, the House of Representatives, Lagos Mainland Federal Constituency position should be zoned to Ebute-Metta(West).
To back up their case for this, they noted that Ebute-Metta (East) and Yaba have had their candidates represent Lagos Mainland Federal Constituency at the House of Representatives.
They further noted that between 1999 and 2007, the Federal Constituency was represented by Hon.Wunmi Bewaji from Yaba; while from 2007 to 2011, it was by Hon. Bashiru Omolaja Bolarinwa from Ebute – Metta (East); Hon. Monsuru Alao Owolabi from Ebute-Metta (East) from 2011 to 2015; and Hon. Jide Jimoh from Yaba from 2015 till date.
They pleaded that after zoning the position to Ebute-Metta (West), Asiwaju Tinubu, Governor Sanwo-Olu and the GAC should also kindly stipulate that the candidate of the party must be a vibrant and intelligent youth below the age of 50 years, whose family is well known and must have contributed to the development of Lagos Mainland Local Government.
Reading out the petition at a press conference attended by royal fathers, community leaders, members various community development associations, religious leaders and youth development associations, leaders of the Elders Forum lamented that their unwavering support for the party from the time it was Alliance for Democracy (AD) to its present form as APC, they have been unjustly sidelined and marginalised in the political equation of Lagos Mainland Local government.
The Elders stated “it is disheartening that despite our contribution, support and commitment to the party and its leadership, we have been treated unjustly, marginalized, oppressed and outrightly sidelined in the political equation in Lagos Mainland Local government.
“It might interest you to know that since the advent of democracy in 1999, Ebute Metta (West) comprising of Apapa road, Otumara (Ilaje), Ilogbo, Abule, Ijero has never held any major elective office despite our support for the ruling party in Lagos State.”
To prove their case of marginalisation, the Elders reeled out data of elective offices and the names of the occupiers, their wards and areas they represent from 1999 till date.
According to them, despite several protest and complaints, the marginalization and oppression of Ebute-Metta (West) still persist till today, inspite of the fact that the area records the highest voters turn out in favour of the party from time to time.
Even the present political equation in Lagos Mainland Local Government, marginalises them, they stated.
They further stated that in the House of Representatives, Hon. Jide Jimoh Abdul is representing Yaba local Council development area, and had served as councilor in Lagos Mainland Local Government, was a two-term member, Lagos State House of Assembly, two-term Executive Chairman, Yaba Local Council Development Area, and two-term member, House of Representatives, Lagos Mainland Federal Constituency.
In the House of Assembly, according to them, Hon. Ibrahim Ajani Owolabi is from Ward F Ebute-Metta(East) and he is representing Lagos Mainland Constituency 1 at the Lagos State House of Assembly.
At the Local Government level, Hon. Mrs. Rasheedat Omolara Essien, they said, is from Ward I Ebute-Metta(East), was a former executive secretary of both Ikeja and Lagos Mainland Local Government and is the current Chairperson of Lagos Mainland Local Government serving her second term in office.