20th March, 2011
Residents of Lagos from Northern Nigeria, grouped under the AREWA community Sunday joined other ethnic groups in the State to endorse the second term bid of the State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN) anchoring their support on his commitment to peaceful co-existence in the State.
The endorsement came barely forty eight hour after the various transport unions in the State, under the auspices of the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), undertook a four-hour march from the Tafawa Balewa Square in Central Lagos to Lagos House in Alausa, Ikeja, to similarly register their support for the Governorâ€™s re-election next month.
Addressing the capacity crowd at the Centre for Management Development (CMD) venue of the AREWA political rally, Governor Fashola assured the community that his administration would continue to work for the peaceful co-existence of the various tribes in the State saying it is only when peace reigns that business can thrive successfully. â€œYou have lived peacefully with the other tribes in Lagos; the Igbo, the Yoruba, the Ijaw, the Kanuri, Ibibio and other tribes.
This is Nigeria, Lagos is Nigeria and it is because we have lived in peace that we are able to achieve what we have achievedâ€, the Governor said. Acknowledging that frictions are inevitable where different people live together, the Governor, however, advised, â€œWhen you have any disagreements, please meet your leaders.
They are working with us to maintain peace and good governance in the State; they will help to resolve the issues without violenceâ€. â€œIt is only when there is peace that business thrives. In the last 12 years from the time of my predecessor, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, we have lived in peace with each other in this State. Your children are in our schools, they are working in our offices, we have built roads, abattoirs, markets for you,
That is where your tax money goes and we will continue to work for you if you vote for ACNâ€, the Governor said. He advised, â€œDo not let anyone deceive you that they are going to do anything for you. The Peoples Democratic Party has been there in Abuja for 12 years, but they have only created poverty among us.
The PDP and other parties have nothing to offer you. They have no answer to the problems of Lagos and Nigeria. ACN will work with your leaders to build greater prosperity in Lagos and in Nigeriaâ€. â€œYou can see what we have achieved in the last four years through the vote you cast in 2007. We will do much more if you vote for the Action Congress of Nigeria in the coming elections.
The broom is what you should look for in the ballot paper and put your fingerprint on it on the voting daysâ€, the Governor further said. Cautioning that they must guide their votes on the election days, the Governor said, â€œGo to the polling booths with your food and water and your family. After voting, stay with your votes to ensure that they are counted and the results declared before you leaveâ€. Governor Fashola thanked the leaders of the Association for their cooperation with the Government in maintaining peace in the State saying his administration would continue to work for the prosperity of the State through the creation of enabling environment for peaceful coexistence.
Earlier, in his welcoming remarks, the leader of the AREWA Community in Lagos, Alhaji Mala Abdulahi Dandama, said the rally was organized to show appreciation to the Governor for all he had done to promote peaceful existence between the Community and other tribes in the State and to promote their business. â€œYour Excellency, it is good to be good. We want to thank you for all you have done for the AREWA Community in Lagos.
The whole Hausa community, from Sokoto, Kaduna, Kano, Bauchi and others and all the traders: the Amalgamated Food and Cattle Traders Association are here to thank you for the great work you have done. You have transformed Lagos State into one of the most beautiful cities in the worldâ€, the Community leader said. He continued, â€œThis is to show appreciation for your good works and excellent performance and to assure you that the entire AREWA Community in Lagos endorse you for a second term as Governor of Lagos State and by the Grace of God, in 2015 as President of Nigeriaâ€. â€œYou have worked so well with the AREWA leaders that we have no choice but to endorse you for a second term.
For 20 years, our people have been doing business here, but there were people who were exploiting us. The only Governor that has stood up for us against exploitation is Babatunde Raji Fasholaâ€, the Leader said. He promised that the AREWA Leaders would continue to work with the Governor during his second tenure to promote peace and good governance in the State and ensure the continued prosperity of the State.
The Centre for Management and Development venue of the event was filled to capacity with thousands of members of the Hausa community from different parts of the State. Aside from the live band which continually rendered Hausa music in praise of Governor Fashola, the excited crowd ushered in the Governor into the venue with the slogan â€œFashola Mukeisoâ€ meaning â€œIt is Fashola we wantâ€.
Also present at the event were the Deputy Governorship candidate, Hon. (Mrs.) Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire, the Senatorial candidate for Lagos East Senatorial District, Gbenga Ashafa, the House of Representatives candidate for Kosofe, Hon. Dayo Bush-Alebiosu and the State House of Assembly candidates for Kosofe 1 and Kosofe 11 Constituencies as well as other leaders of the AREWA Community in the State and top Government functionaries.