By Dare Ojelade
On Friday, 10 July 2020, Nigerians, particularly Lagosians woke up to the sad news of the demise of one of the most active and eloquent members of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Honourable Tunde Braimoh.
The Gazelle News.com recalled that the late Chairman of the House Committee on Information, Strategy and Security allegedly died of complications arising from Coronavirus Infection.
Until his death, Braimoh was a representative of the Kosofe State Constituency 2, running his second term in office. He was elected on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
The race to replace the erudite Lawmaker has been on few days after his death and The Gazelle News.com can report that not a few politicians have indicated their interest to replace the deceased lawmaker on the platform of the ruling party in the state.
Kosofe State Constituency 2 is made up of two local council development areas under Kosofe Local Government: Ikosi-Isheri and Agboyi-Ketu LCDAs, so it was no surprise that all the aspirants contesting the party’s ticket to contest the primary are from the councils.
The Gazelle News.com in this analysis ex-rays the leading aspirants as the race for the party’s ticket gathers momentum.
Some of the leading aspirants are:
OMOOBA ADEYINKA ADEBAYO OYEDIRAN is arguably the strongest aspirant for the seat.
He has both the experience of a politician and an astute businessman. He is an experience politician who has never wavered from the progressive ideals. He has been a major political player in Kosofe Local since the advent of the present political dispensation. He is also a very experienced grassroots mobiliser.
During the last election in the Lagos East Senatorial District, Omooba, as he is popularly called, was the campaign strategist.
Prior to that, he has been a Special Adviser to the Governor of Ogun State on Political Matters between 2008 and 2011.
Omooba was to run for the seat in 2019 but was prevailed upon by the party leaders to drop his ambition for the late Braimoh to go for second term.
Despite being a close associate of the late Senator Sikiru Adebayo Osinowo, he cut across all the political leaders in the axis as he has a very robust relationship with all of them.
Apart from this, Omooba is a successful businessman and a chartered secretary having received a professional secretary certificate from the Institute of Chartered Secretaries of London and till date has been a member of the Institute of Chartered Secretaries. He has also been a lecturer having been a guest lecturer at the Federal College of Education, Akoka between 1997 and 1999. Omooba is from Ikosi-Isheri LCDA.
Another top contender for the APC ticket is YAKUBU BALOGUN.
Balogun is reported to be the getting the backing of the Speaker of the Lagos State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon Mudashiru Obasa. The story in town is that the National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu had given Obasa the mandate to pick a successor for Braimoh who will be loyal and committed. Obasa was reported to have settled for Balogun.
Balogun is from the Balogun family in Ikosi-Isheri LCDA and has been a member of the party for long. He was also reported to be a committed member of the defunct Mandate political group and is reported to be active in the activities of group and party.
Yet another contender is the former Secretary of the Local Government Education Authority (LGEA) in Kosofe Local Government, Abiodun Akhigbe.
Akhigbe was the LGEA secretary during the tenure of the late Braimoh as the Chairman of the old Kosofe Local Government and he has been an active member of the party since the present political dispensation commenced in 1999.
Akhigbe was nominated recently as a member of the state Audit Commission by the state Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu. However his nomination was rejected by the state House of Assembly when he was disqualified at the screening conducted by the Assembly.
Many believe this is a payback time for the politician from the Agboyi-Ketu Local Council Development Area.
Another contender to the seat is SHINA BILESANMI.
Nothing much is known about him except for the fact that he had once contested for the seat with the late Braimoh. He was second runner-up in the primaries conducted in 2015 to pick the candidate of the party when Braimoh contested and won for his first term in office.
Perhaps the youngest contender so far is PRINCE OLADEGA IBRAHIM KEHINDE. A prince of Agboyi, Ladega is a strong contender who has been using his strong media experience to his advantage. He is also a grassroots mobiliser.
Oladega was a media aide to the late Senator Osinowo and was a member of the Media Committee of the Babajide Sanwo-Olu Campaign Organisation.
He is from Agboyi-Ketu Local Council Development Area.