The member representing Ikeja Federal Constituency in the House of Representatives, Honourable James Abiodun Faleke, has described the National Leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), as the man who provided him the platform to become the successful politician he is today, reports The Gazelle News.com.
Faleke disclosed this while speaking in Abuja at the Inauguration of the steering committees for the Tinubu Support Group (TSG), the umbrella organisation for all groups campaigning for the actualisation of the Presidential aspirations of the former Lagos State Governor. Faleke, co-founded the group with people of likeminds to draw up support for the presidential aspiration of Tinubu.
Speaking during the event, Faleke stated that but for Tinubu, who have the needed platform and support, his political aspirations could have become stillborn.
“People have wondered why i am on the frontlines of the campaign to draft Asiwaju Bola Tinubu for presidency? This is my story.
“I was a Procurement Manager with Crown Agents when I showed interest in participating in the politics of Ikeja Local Government in Lagos State.
“As everyone knows, Ikeja is Asiwaju’s electoral base. That is his constituency. In those days, you needed to be the son or daughter of an old politician to make your way into the intrigues of Lagos Pesitics.
“Asiwaju did not know my father. He did not know my mother. Yet, he made me, a young man from Kogi state, the first Executive Secretary of Ojodu Local Council Development Area. He gave me a platform to stand.
“Without that foundation, I could not have served as Executive Chairman for two terms and become the Chairman of Conference 57 (ALGON). Today, thanks to God who sent Asiwaju to me, I am a third -term member of the House of Representatives.
“Therefore, for me and many other men and women he raised, this is, Sakkaya! Our payback time! TSG! Sakayya! TSG! Sakayya! TSG! Sakayya,” Faleke said.
Faleke described Tinubu as a miracle worker who turned Lagos from a struggling state generating a meagre N600 million monthly to a prosperous state generating N35 billion monthly.
“My claim that Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is the maker of modern Lagos is a truthful assertion, a miraculous story that has become part of our history. The cast is stiil alive and even the landscape can tell the stories of its transformation from 1999 to 2007. We all witnessed how a poor government, struggling to manage N600 million monthy revenue in 1999 was turned to a prosperous government making N35 billion monthly,” Faleke, Chairman of the House Committee on Finance, said.
Below is the full speech delivered by Faleke at the event:
RUN, ASIWAJU AHMED BOLA TINUBU*
Speech delivered by Hon. James Faleke on the occasion of the inauguration of state Steering Committees of the Tmubu Support Group on Saturday, 23 October, 2021 in Abuja, Federal Capital Territory.
All protocols duly observed.
On behalf of the Tinubu Support Group, I congratulate the members of our steering Committees, and appreciate, our dignitaries and supporters from east, west north and South of our great country, Nigeria, to this historic occasion.
2. On assumption of office, the All Progressives Congress Administration of President Muhammadu Buhari had to perform three tasks, simultaneously; first, fight insecurity that was threatening to take over not only north east but the Federal Capital Territary, secondly, reverse the infrastructural deficit that made life difficult for the people and thirdly, set up a new developmental order by rolling out projects and programmes to lay the foundation of the economic sustenance of the country.
3. Four years after, the verdict of the people, expressed with their votes in the 2019 presidential elections, demonstrated by popular acclamation, that under President Buhari, our country has chosen a progressive path to development.
4. Two years into the second term of the administration and in line with constitutional provisions, our party has come to the point once again when it must prepare the grounds for orderly transition from this apc government to another APC government. This is not negotiable! Our party must go into the next elections with the determination to win fair and square. We must mobilise the voters to see the gains of continuity. Our party must give hope that we can continue to provide the greatest good for the largest majority of our people.
5. Why is this important? It is because of the solid achievements of the Buhari administration in transportation (including our fast rail service and improved road network). mass housing, preventive health, export-led agriculture, functionai education, improved electricity and stronger communications are today blurred by the threats posed to the national economy by the dangers of banditry, kidnapping and separatism.
6. The destablising agenda, sponsored by domestic nihilists and foreign enemies of Nigeria, must not be allowed to shape the narrative of the 2023 elections. Our party and government must snap victory from the jaws of these challenges. It is not the time to experiment with inexperienced experts. It is not the season for those who can talk but have no history of walking their talk.
7. The solution is to look for a candidate who has demonstrated the capacity for solving social, economic and political problems; a patriot and a performer; a knowlegde leader and a head hunter; a thinker and a doer; an auditor and a logistician; a man with analytic, predictive and systematic intellect; a man of deep compassion and selfless generosity; a man who has been tested and trusted; a true federalist; a financial strategist; a visionary beyond illusion.
8. We have discovered a man who has developed many leaders: Councillors, Chairmen, Members of Houses of Assembly, Members of the House of Representatives, Senators, Ministers and even Vice Presidents within and outside the country. We are talking of a man who has groomed leaders of leaders including me and many others seated here today. All his disciples and our families have no other reason at this crucial time than to be loyal to a man who gave us food when we were hungry, a man who gave us water when we were thirsty, a man who gave us opportunity when we didn’t stand a chance.
9. We have discovered a man who is ready to sacrifice all he has for his fatherland. A man who had comfortable control of the entire southwest and six solid governors yet threw everything into the alliance with President Muhammadu Buhari with 12miliion votes but with one governor to build a new Pan Nigerian Party of his dream. A man who ran a state that gave opportunities to citizens for appointive and elective positions on merit, without regard for their religion, ethnicity or class.
10. This is a man who left office in 2007 yet remains popular till today because he is focused, consistent and persistent. He has been the central figure in Nigerian politics.
11. It is now clear that the meeting of minds between him and President Buhari is grounded in their circumstances. Just like President Buhari left power in August 1985 but continued to mark the higher standards of the progressive military in government, the image and relevance of our man of the moment soared in public consciousness despite his unofficial status. From the south, he extended the handshake across the Niger that gave birth to our party, the All Progressives Congress.
12. That a man who has never been on the ballot since 2007 yet successfully created a platform for thousands of candidates to get on the ballot and support win is not
just something to ponder and wonder about, it convinces beyond reasonable doubt, that he is committed to the progressive development of our country.
13. It is not often that history nurtures a particular person to fit into the need of
particular time. Our party is therefore lucky that it does not need to go on a Wild goose chase for the man to fly our party’s flag in these challenging times; a time when the Presidency of the Federal Republic of Nigeria must go to the person who can continue to end baditry, to crush kidnappers and engage separatists so that our people can live in peace and prosperity. this is a man who will use his financial wizardry to further the gains of economic transformation.
14. To secure the votes of the majority in 2023, we must present a candidate who knows where the shoe pinches the average Nigerian, notjust because he has been there, but because, as the governor of the most difficult, most complex state in Nigeria, he put smiles on the faces of the poor by convincing the rich to join the government to chase poverty from the streets.
15. That man is Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the Asiwaju of Lagos, Lagos State. The Jagaban of Borgu, Niger State, The Eze-obaIu-dike ngu of Oko, Anambra State. He is already our national leader. By the practice and standards in other cimes, when the issue of raising a Presidential Candidate is on the burner, such a personality should be given the right of first refusal.
16. People have wondered why i am on the frontlines of the campaign to draft Asiwaju Bola Tinubu for presidency? This is my story. I was a procurement manager with crown agents when I showed interest in participating in the politics of Ikeja Local Government in Lagos State. As everyone knows, Ikeja is Asiwaju’s electoral base. That is his constituency. In those days, you needed to be the son or daughter of an old politician to make your way into the intrigues of Lagos Politics. Asiwaju did not know my father. He did not know my mother. Yet, he made me, a young man from Kogi state, the first Executive Secretary of Ojodu Local Council Development Area. He gave me a platform to stand. Without that foundation, I could not have served as Executive Chairman for two terms and become the Chairman of Conference 57 (Algon). Today, thanks to God who sent Asiwaju to me, i am a third -term member of the Federal House of Representatives.
17. Therefore, for me and many other men and women he raised, this is, Sakkaya! Our payback time! TSG! Sakayya! TSG! Sakayya! TSG! Sakayya!
18. Ladies and Gentlemen, Dignitaries, the least sacrifice we can make is to let the whole country see the leadership we have seen, feel the compassion we have felt; and move the maker of modern Lagos to the moulder of a greater Nigeria.
19. My claim that Asiwaju Bola Tinubu is the maker of modern Lagos is a truthful assertion, a miraculous story that has become part of our history. The cast is stiil aiive and even the landscape can tell the stories of its transformation from 1999 to 2007. We all witnessed how a poor government, struggling to manage N600 Million Monthy revenue in 1999 was turned to a prosperous government making N35billion monthy today, thanks to the doggedness and financial wizardry of an incurable optimist and imaginative strategist.
20. From financial transformation, he moved to political revolution, turning 20 to 57 local councils, making the Lagos state House of Assembly the first to achieve financial autonomy and using the courts to retreive stolen mandates and standing up to the autocracy of a beligerent presidency.
21. Asiwaju ran a government that was very conscious of its responsibility to the people and environment. To provide clean electricity for industries, he introduced the first ever independent power project in Nigeriathe enron barges. Today, it contributes to the energy needs of Lagos. From a city about to fall apart in 2000, Lagos is today the most sustainable, resilient and developing city-state in Africa.
22. We have discovered this wonderful personality. Who else compares with this oollosal bundle of talent and tact? Who else has sacrificed a party comfortably in control of the wester n r egion to for m a national party of progressives? Who else has co-founded a party yet contented with the symbolic role of a national leader? Who else has supported the emergence of presidents across African countries yet takes interest in local politics at the ward level?
23. We are putting forward this gift of God to humanity, a man generously gifted in intellect, political sagacity and application of ideas to solving the challenges of governance. A man endowed with generosity and passion for taking risks to protect, promote and propagate the interest of the people.
24. The Tinubu Support Group was set up by all of us who believe that only Asiwaju Bola Tinubu has the divine gift to continue the progressive strides of President Muhammadu Buhari and put to shame the design of the enemies of Nigeria, who conspire to sponsor rebellion and insecurity to checkmate the anti-corruption war launched by the APC administration. In the same way, Asiwaju fought corruption with technology and native intelligence in Lagos state, we are convinced that he has all it takes to lead us to further thejourney to a greater Nigeria already embarked upon under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari and the APC.
25. Therefore, on behalf of the millions of supporters of Tmubu Support Group, we are calling on our National Leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tmubu to formally announce his presidential aspiration.
TSG! Sakayya! TSG! Sakayya! Tsg! Sakayya!
Hon. James Faleke, member, House of Representatives, lkeja Federal Constituency