House of Representatives members from Lagos State have denied a recent media report which claimed they have adopted a former Accountant-General in Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode as the next governor of the state.
The lawmakers had reportedly met with Ambode at a meeting he was said to have formally intimated them with his intention to run as governor in next year’s election, a piece of information the lawmakers would rather was for the records.
But a report emanating from the meeting alleged an adoption by the lawmakers with an intention to give Ambode’s alleged ambition some boost in the countdown to 2015.
Reacting to the development, one of the lawmakers, who was at the meeting but pleading anonymity, said: “Nothing can be farther from the truth because there was no such thing as adopting or endorsing anybody let alone Ambode.
“Indeed, he met with us to inform us of his intention to run for the governorship of the state. In any case, he wasn’t doing anything new as other aspirants have also been meeting people, either as groups or individuals. So, we listened to him and said we’ve heard him. That’s all.
“There was nothing more to the meeting. How could we at our level give such a blanket adoption at this stage of the race to the Government House? We know better and we are politicians who understand the rudiments of politics and the stages leading to the processes that will produce a governor. We are also not oblivious of the mood in our respective constituencies with respect to primaries and could not have engaged in any untoward adoption of any aspirant. It would be counterproductive.
“You know, the most annoying thing was that there was one of us who raised the observation when we were asked to come and take photographs. The guy saw it coming and was reluctant but we asked that the people be credited with a bit of intelligence and so, we gave them that benefit of the doubt. And here, they bungled it. Please, take my words for it; we did not endorse him. But did we meet with him? Yes, we did and that’s all about it.
“I think this is an eye-opener for those who might be called for one meeting or the other too. Short of calling this blackmail, I think it is unbecoming of anyone to stage-manage adoption. What kind of man would go this far in the bid to realise an ambition? It is both appalling and regrettable,” he said.
Asked why he did not want the story attributed to him since he boasts so much conviction about a-no-adoption meeting, the lawmaker retorted: “You don’t know the forces behind this guy, really. We’ve heard different stories about those behind his ambition.
“And, even if you want to dismiss some of the stories flying around, the fact that the Oba of Lagos (Rilwan Akiolu) stuck out his neck carries a lot of weight. So, I’d rather we keep it at that. After all, it is you who wanted to find out if we truly adopted him or not and I also gave my condition for speaking. That’s it! Thank you.”
Another lawamker confirmed to thegazellenews.com that the meeting with them was at the instance of the aspirant. “He met with us only to inform us of his ambition but the issue of adoption never came in at all,” the lawmaker from one of the Federal Constituencies in the Lagos East Senatorial District told our correspondent.