Laide Raheem, Abeokuta
Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, has disclosed he had survived nine litigations, including that of the Governorship Election Petition Tribunal, since he emerged the All Progressives Congress candidate.
Abiodun, apparently making reference to his victory at the tribunal, disclosed, yesterday, in Abeokuta, when he fielded questions from newsmen at the sidelines of the opening ceremony of the Second Plenary of Catholic Bishops’ Conference of Nigeria.
The governor, who said he monitored the tribunal judgement on Saturday from Burkina Faso, described his victory as a ‘divine mandate’, saying the victory is for Ogun people.
Abiodun commended the judiciary for doing a thorough job by ratifying the mandate freely given him by the people and thanked his party for standing by him throughout the period of the tribunal.
“I have gone through probably one of the most turbulent periods any governor could have gone through. I went through several pre-election cases, about eight or nine and also this tribunal.
“My first reaction was to give glory to Almighty God. And to say that this is further affirmation that, indeed, with God, nothing shall be impossible. This victory is for Ogun State people who have entrusted me with this mandate. It has been contested in so many courts.
“God will continue to remain God; this mandate is a divine mandate and I believe is obvious to all. This is a decision of the people of the state and further ratified by the tribunal on Saturday.
“Unfortunately, I was away in Burkina Faso, but, I was being informed about what was going on back home and I was told it was a detailed judgement.
“I am thankful to the judiciary, the Ogun people and my team of lawyers, and I am thankful to my party that has stood by me during this period. They are very disciplined, very resilient, supportive and I could not have opted to be in another party apart from APC.
“It is not because I am the best in the state or I am special; God has just given me the assignment to lead Ogun at this point in time. I have pledged I will do so with all God has given me,” Abiodun said.
Meanwhile, a former deputy governor of the state, Adegbenga Kaka, has urged the APM and Akinlade to eat the humble pie by accepting the tribunal’s verdict.
Kaka, who chided the party and Akinlade for holding the state down unnecessarily for upward of four months, heating up the polity and causing distraction, equally urged them to put an end to further ‘unpatriotic pursuit’ by venturing to approach the Appeal Court.
Kaka, in a statement, yesterday, said Akinlade and his party should accept the tribunal’s verdict in good faith, noting the state cannot be afforded to be held down by unnecessary litigations.
He, however, lauded the tribunal members for their thorough job of “systemic demolition of what they termed as lazy, frivolous, malicious, pedestrian, spurious and unsubstantiated allegations and claims.”