The presidential candidate of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) Asiwaju Bola Tinubu; the party’s National Chairman, Senator Abdullahi Adamu and 14 Governors on Tuesday stormed Ekiti to rally support for the APC candidate in the Saturday’s governorship election, Biodun Oyebanji.
At the campaign rally were the party’s National Secretary Iyiola Omisore,; ex-Osun Governor, Chief Bisi Akande, members of the APC National Working Committee (NWC) members of the National Assembly and Ministers, among other leaders of the party.
Among Governors present were Babajide Sanwolu (Lagos); Dapo Abiodun (Ogun); Rotimi Akeredolu ( Ondo); Nasir El-rufai (Kaduna); Gboyega Oyetola (Osun); Atiku Bagudu (Kebbi) and Abubakar Badaru (Jigawa)
Others were Solomon Lalong (Plateau); Abdulrasaq Abdulrasaq (Kwara); Inua Yahaya (Gombe); Kayode Fayemi (Ekiti); Babagana Zulum (Borno); Abdullahi Sule (Nassarawa) and Abdullahi Ganduje of Kano.
Addressing the mammoth crowd of APC supporters at the Ekiti Parapo Pavilion in Ado Ekiti, the Ekiti state capital, Tinubu who represented President Muhammadu Buhari, said the ruling APC was poised to win the June 18 governorship election.
Tinubu said the Saturday’s election is a must win for the ruling APC, adding nothing will stop the party from winning the election, which he described as first test after his emergence as the party’s standard bearer in the 2023 presidential election.
Tinubu said that APC leadership was not was not oblivious of the importance of the coming election to the 2023 general poll, adding that the party stood a better chance of win going by the preparation made so far.
The former Lagos Governor said the APC had started a revolution in Nigeria since 2015 by sweeping away the then ruling PDP and sustained in 2019, noting that the revolution should be allowed to reach an enviable height by voting APC in all election.
According to him: “We started a work the revolution since 2013. We succeeded in February 2015 by sweeping away the Poverty Development Party (PDP) We are about to bury them in 2019 but they beg us that they wanted to survive. So, come 2023, we are going to bury PDP completely buried and it would start from Ekiti state.
“President Muhammadu Buhari, a man of honour and dignity had kept his promise by passing the ball to us in the south that we should produce the next President and it is now left for us to vote APC to maintain the unity and progress of our nation”.
He appealed to aggrieved APC members to sheathe their proverbial swords and embrace unity with a view to working for the resounding success of the party in the governorship election.
“Democracy is full of twist and turns. To those who are aggrieved in Ekiti, nothing is wrong in having quarrels in a party, but it is not good to burn down the house.
“That is why I want you to vote for ‘Emilokan of Ekiti’, Biodun Oyebanji. This is our first test after my emergence, don’t let us fail. don’t let us disapoint President Buhari. We must put Nigeria on the path of progress and you will never regret voting for APC in this election”.
Governors Akeredolu, Sanwo-Olu and Bagudu, said the APC would leave no stone until in its quest to sustain progressive governance in the state.
Sanwolu who described Oyebanji as the best man to succeed Fayemi, saying that what Ekiti state needed at this time was competent leader not an apprentice that would continue the good works of the outgoing governor.
He urged the people of the state to vote massively for the ruling APC to sustain tempo of socio-economic development in the state.
Bagudu, who is Chairman of the Progressive Governors Forum, said the governorship election was important to the party as it would a major pointer to the 2023 general election.
He added that Tinubu had been picked as the party’s presidential candidate and that the Southwest must stand firmly by him and the only way to demonstrate this is by winning Ekiti for APC.
“The Progressive Governors’ Forum knows that Ekiti will do us proud on Saturday by overwhelmingly voting for APC, banking on the solid foundation Governor Fayemi has provided.
“Biodun Oyebanji is the only one that can continue the good work Fayemi has begun. He will not disappoint you. The Southwest has a big task ahead of 2023 and holding the zone strongly for Asiwaju to be able to win the 2023 presidential election will be to the benefit of all of us”, Bagudu stated.
Presenting the flag to the candidate, the National Chairman of the Party, Senator Adamu, expressed optimism that Oyebanji will be elected as the next governor to succeed Fayemi, who he said had done wonderfully well in the last four years.
“Since the nomination of my brother and your father, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu as our presidential candidate, this is our first outing. We want to see you come out and vote for this humble and service-incined young man .
“I have been to Ekiti on three occasions, but I have never seen this kind of a crowd. I have never seen a crowd like this and this is an indication of the support you have for APC.
“We saw the votes you gave APC in 2018 and you have to replicate and even do more on Saturday”, Adamu pleaded.
On his part, Akande, stressed that if all Nigerians, including the Hausas, Fulanis and Igbos, agreed to make a Yoruba man President in 2023,that Ekiti voters shouldn’t disgrace the party on Saturday.
“Please, whoever we have offended should please forgive us in the interest of our party and all of us. APC is a party that we can trust. Yoruba and Ekiti in particular belongs to the progressive and we must display this election”, Akande said.