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I Will Be President of a United Nigeria, Tinubu Declares in Ibadan 

” I really want to thank you for your good reception because it is not easy to take an opposition entourage into the canopy of your own shade, but you did,: he told Oyo Governor Makinde.

The presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on Thursday, in Ibadan, said his vision is to become the President of a united Nigeria.

This is just as Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, said he and his colleague Governors under the aegis of G-5 Governors, will vote equity, justice, fairness and unity of Nigeria come February 25.

Tinubu and Makinde, spoke when the former paid a courtesy call on the latter at the Oyo State Government Secretariat, Agodi-Ibadan, on Thursday.

Tinubu and other APC chieftains were in Ibadan, for the presidential rally of the party which held at the ancient Mapo Hall.

The visit according to Tinubu was to honour Makinde, intimate him of his visions and plans for the country, canvass for votes among the people of the state and also solicit the support of Makinde and the state as a whole in order to realise his presidential ambition.

He was accompanied on the visit by chieftains of the APC that include Chief Bisi Akande, Minister of Youths and Sports Development, Chief Sunday Dare, Governor Dapo Abiodun (Ogun), Ex-Governor Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti) and Ex-Governor Gboyega Oyetola (Osun).

Others are Senator Musiliu Obanikoro, former Speaker, House of Representatives, Dimeji Bankole, Senator Babajide Omoworare, Chief Zachheus Adelabu, Senator Soji Akanbi, Mutiu Aare, Dotun Babayemi among others.

The APC presidential candidate, in his remarks, lauded Makinde for being a lucky individual to be part of the history of a great state like Oyo state, adding that national politics should be devoid of ethnic sentiments.

He maintained that his aspiration is to become the next president of a united and secured Nigeria, while assuring that the APC rally in the state would be peaceful and orderly devoid of any crisis.

According to him,  “I am aspiring to become the president of a united, one country, Nigeria, and for that sake, political divide and separation must be clearly out of our way. 

“That is why the first port of call should be the Chief Executive and the chief security officer of the state, constitutionally. So, I am here to give you insights into why we are all in Oyo State today.

“I really want to thank you for your good reception because it is not easy to take an opposition entourage into the canopy of your own shade, but you did.

“Equally, you have demonstrated the characteristics of a good leader, a persevering individual, hardworking regardless of our political divide, and respectful in every aspect of your behaviour.

“So, today, I decided to pay you that respect and thank you for the good job you are doing in Oyo State.”

Governor  Makinde, in his own remarks, said the people of Oyo State will vote for equity, fairness, justice, and unity of Nigeria in the presidential election.

He explained that as governor of Oyo State, he does not play politics with governance, noting that the government always put the people first as opposed to party affiliation.

The governor maintained that the message of the G-5 governors and integrity group is that, if they have to choose between the unity of this country and political aspirations, they will choose the unity of this country.

He equally stated that if Nigeria is to progress, citizens must evolve a system that includes inclusivity, fairness, justice, and equity in how the country is run. 

He said, “Let me use this opportunity to welcome you to Oyo State for your campaign. We have done everything to ensure that the exercise is peaceful and also enable you to pass your message to the people of the state.

“We don’t play politics with governance here. I have my brother here, the former governor of Osun State, Gboyega Oyetola. We worked together irrespective of the party affiliations, to solve a particular problem, which has lingered between Oyo and Osun States. It is a demonstration of putting our people first as opposed to the party affiliations.

“Like you rightly pointed out, Sir, if you look at the wall (in the Executive Council Chambers), you will see from the colonial masters all the way to the immediate past governor Abiola Ajimobi. Here, we do have a sense of history, and some of them ruled under different political parties. 

“So, players will come and go but our country will remain.

“We, the G-5 and Integrity group are saying that, look, if we have to choose between the unity of this country and our political aspirations, we will choose the unity of this country.

“So, I alluded to the sacrifices made by our APC  colleagues, the governors from the Northern part of this country because we also monitored your emergence, and they sacrificed certain things for the unity of this country.

“If we have to move forward as a people, we have to evolve a system such that there is inclusivity, fairness, justice and equity in how we run this country. If the country does not survive, the political parties will fade away. “So, I will say that I wish you well. It is only few days to go, about nine days. 

“One thing I want you to take away from this visit today is the fact that we will vote for equity, for fairness, for justice and for unity of Nigeria in this presidential election.”

However the presidential rally held at the Mapo Hall, Ibadan, turned out to be an anti-climax as Tinubu only presented flag of the party to the governorship candidate, Senator Teslim Folarin, without addressing the crowd.

Party supporters from across all the 33 local government areas of the state, had thronged the venue from 8 am anxiously waiting for the former Lagos State governor, who did not get there until after 6 pm.

Kemi Olaitan

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