Dele Alake Explains Why Ambode Did Not Get Second Term As Lagos State Governor

Bola Tinubu (left) with former Lagos State governor Akinwunmi Ambode

A former Commissioner for Information and Strategy who served the government of Bola Ahmed Tinubu when he was Lagos State governor Mr Dele Alake has been trying to explain why the former governor of Lagos State, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode did not get a second term ticket.

Theorists have it that Ambode and Tinubu fell apart due to some disagreements between the two men, which made Tinubu to deny him the ticket even though both politicians belong to the same All Progressives Congress (APC). Recall that Tinubu had allegedly attempted a similar move to deny Fashola a second term but received stiff resistance from Lagosians because of the good job Fashola was doing at the time.

But Dele Alake told his audience that Ambode did not get the second term ticket because incumbent Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu defeated him at the 2018 primaries. Dele Alake, who is the Director of Media and Communications of the Campaign Council of Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, Presidential candidate of the APC said this during a Twitter Space hosted by Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu (ABAT) Media Centre, on Sunday.

Since the return of democracy in 1999, Ambode is the only governor in Lagos State who did not secure a second term ticket. Analysts believe that Ambode fell out with the leadership of the party controlled by Tinubu, which led to his defeat in the direct governorship primary held in 2018.

Dele Alake

But in what appeared like trying to manage the situation ahead of the 2023 presidential elections Alake through the Twitter space, and in response to a question said Tinubu did not deny Ambode the second term ticket. According to him, Ambode went through the primary with Sanwo-Olu and subsequently lost.

He said, “In a political competition, there must be supporters here and there. Yes, Fashola’s successor (Ambode) came into office, he was supported by Asiwaju as Asiwaju supported Fashola. But let me use this opportunity to clear one point, a misconception that Ambode wasn’t given a second term. It is not true.

“The governorship mandate is not for Asiwaju to give or take. It is for the people of Lagos State to give or to take or withdraw. Ambode was in office, for whatever reason he might have committed, of course he did commit gaps and faux pas, but he also went through election. Maybe people have forgotten, or they have selective amnesia, Ambode went through the political process and lost.

“Asiwaju did not take the ticket from him. He contested the primaries with Babajide Sanwo-Olu and lost. The primary was conducted in the open all over the state and the media covered it and it was shown everywhere. Why do people always succumb to such partisanship occasioned by blind prejudices. Yes, it was Asiwaju’s right to support any candidate or aspirant, it is a natural phenomenon.”

He stated further that Sanwo-Olu emerged the same way Ambode was elected in 2014 among the array of other aspirants who are equally qualified.

“The current Deputy Governor contested, and I remember more than 12 others contested with him. Ambode emerged the winner. So will all the others that lost now accuse Asiwaju of not giving them the ticket.

“Now fast forward to 2018, it was direct primary that was done in all the words and communities, designated centres and the man lost, and Sanwo-Olu won. So will it be Asiwaju’s fault that he supported Sanwo-Olu or whatever. That’s the game of politics. So Ambode went through the political process. He was not denied. If he had been denied the opportunity to take part in the process, we could have said, ‘okay, he was denied.’”

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