Lagos State governor, Akinwunmi Ambode was absent at the mega rally of the governorship candidate of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Babajide Sanwo-Olu, which took place in Ikorodu, fuelling speculations that impeachment was imminent.
The governor, who is a member of President Muhammadu Buhari’s campaign council, broke with the state party’s tradition where incumbents usually accompany governorship candidates on major rallies across the state. Ambode was said to have visited his Epe constituency on Wednesday, January 30, but travelled to Kano to attend the presidential rally held there.
During the 2015 governorship campaign, former Governor Babatunde Fashola accompanied the then-candidate Akinwumi Ambode to most of all the rallies held in the 20 local government areas of the state and it was expected that Ambode would continue in that tradition.
Today’s rally was scheduled to begin by 9 am but at 10.30am, chieftains and candidates of the party began trooping into the venue, while Sanwo-Olu and his running mate, Obafemi Hamzat came into the arena at 1.30pm. Immediately party supporters observed that Ambode was absent, many began speculating that his absence might be connected with the recent impeachment threat from the Lagos State House of Assembly over his refusal to present the 2019 Appropriation Bill on the floor of the House.
Few minutes after Sanwo-Olu’s arrival, he was ushered onto the podium where he urged voters to support all the party’s candidates from the presidential to the House of Assembly. He also promised to ensure that Ikorodu is developed beyond its present state if he is elected.
He said: “I will continue to appeal to voters to support our party as they have always done in the past 20 years. If you vote for me, my administration will construct Sulemain Farouk road to Agboyi-Ketu road and ensure that Ikorodu will have its own stadium.
“Some people are saying that we are in bondage in Lagos, but I want to tell you that we are not in bondage. Tell those lying that they do not have anything to say. On February 16, we must all go out to vote for President Muhammadu Buhari and all our senatorial and House of Representative candidates. I urge you to come out on March 2 to vote for me and all our House of Assembly candidates.”