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Lagos 2019: Between Ambode, Tinubu, fashola and Jide Sanwo-Olu
By Ade Aderibigbe
I think the message from Lagos is simple. The Mandate Movement Lagos, which is an amalgam of BATCO groups, owns the platform. It says political office is not automatic.
There are so many intricately interwoven variables that must be in place before the choice is made.
From this present case in point, the Movement seems to have made a point that anyone within the system can be called to serve.
The Movement has made its choice; it says a former Commissioner, Jide Sanwo-Olu, will replace the incumbent Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode as the Governor of Lagos. If you are aggrieved, go and form your own party.
In the last 20 years, the class of Commissioners has never been so lucky. Despite the extremely rich resources that the cadre has been blessed with, they have never produced a governor as Asiwaju picked an apolitical Chief of Staff, and when Babatunde Fashola was done, dumped them yet again to pick from the Perm Secretary Cadre.
Sanwo-Olu is breaking a jinx that is long overdue. He is coming also as bridge across the three epochs of this fourth republic as he has served all the three government he would be inheriting.
That aside, to those saying the Mandate Movement decision is not fair on Ambode, should pause to ask many party faithful. Political decisions have never been fair. Even Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu has not been spared some of these intrigues, despite being the founder of the party.
So many have been bruised in the past, it doesn’t matter whose turn it us to be served the hemlock. The greatest test of political maturity is in how Governor Ambode weathers the storm. Not by daring to go alone, especially where you have no known political pedigree.
Those hemming Gov Ambode to dare and play dirty know it will lead him nowhere but political oblivion. All the odds are against such decision. No matter how much funds have been diverted for a season like, such can be better deployed. It would be a waste to pump it into fighting a lost cause.
Sir, if the system that birthed you says you are not good enough, let it be. It is the bitter pill you have to swallow if you still want to be politically relevant.
Just like your predecessor Babatunde Fashola, accept the party’s supremacy, play your part during the campaigns and enthusiastically serve the remaining months of your tenure by ensuring the completion of those signature projects for which your administration has become known. Refuse the temptation of abandoning any so that your regime would be counted for honour by the people. Then, quietly leave the scene for a dignified rest or higher service. That is the only path of honour.