8th May, 2014
By Larry Raj
I am amazed about the noise being made about Akin Ambode, a man people are saying Tinubu will impose on Lagosians. But who is Akin Ambode? For those reading about him for the first time or those who know little about him, let me give a glimpse of the man. Ambode is a Lagosian from Epe. A brilliant chap whose West African School Certificate is brandished with excellence. He studied Accounting at the University of Lagos and graduated at the age of 21 in flying colours.
He became a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Accountants before he was 30 years. He lost his financier when he left secondary school and his experiences and doggedness that saw him through put in in a position to assist the needy. His care and concern for all can be testified to by all those that come across him.
As the Accountant-General of Lagos State Government during the administration of President Obasanjo when Lagos State did not get funds from the Federal Government, Akin was able to make funds available and Lagos State survived this period. Akin’s impact on development at the office of the Accountant-General during his tenure there is evident for all to see.
His tenure at local governments and office of the Auditor General of Local Government was revolutionary and result oriented. I have not even mentioned his other achievements that I know about and what I have written is just a tip of the iceberg.
Akin is a very contented man. He retired voluntarily at the age of 49, the peak of his career, (many would hold on to that position until retirement age of 60 but not him) and went into the pursuit of his dream to contribute his quota to youth education and development through La Roche Leadership Foundation- a NGO.
Now when destiny beckoned to him and the call of duty sounded, he is rising to the stage. Akin’s testimonial is that of a solid anchor and I see him as someone who can take Lagos to the next level and sustain the legacies that Tinubu/Fashola have built and this makes him a first choice because we need to build upon the strong foundation that has been laid by the frontrunners.
Why then the noise about imposition? This is indeed a distraction and a ploy to make people believe that he is to be imposed on Lagosians by Tinubu. I believe that Akin Ambode will not be intimidated by these tactics and Asiwaju cannot be cowed
For the records, it is an unwritten law that ‘few rule many’ and there are ‘Abamieda’ who God created for certain purposes. So if Tinubu turns out to be a Nostradamus of Nigeria, with a great foresight for picking winners and looking after the progress of Lagos, so be it.
Tinubu fished out Fashola to continue his unparalleled development and vision for Lagos, and Fashola has not disappointed him in terms of delivery. If Tinubu, a great politician with vision 2020, looks into his mirror and sees that Akin Ambode is equal to the task of moving Lagos forward, so be it. Tinubu does not have to impose Ambode on Lagosians, Ambode’s package sells itself as it will be revealed when campaigns start. Tinubu has a right to pick his candidates and he will help to market Ambode simply because the people of Lagos believe in him to deliver and he has never failed in that regard.
Let Ambode’s detractors tell us who amongst all the intending contenders Tinubu has not supported and nominated in the rise to their present position. To all the faceless sponsors of the campaign of calumny, the earlier they face reality and join the moving train, the better for them. Eko o ni baje o.
•Raj wrote this article from Lagos.