New Telegraph

Lagos Assembly: Uproar in Somolu as APC stakeholders oppose lawmaker’s fifth term bid

Stakeholders in the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) in Somolu local government area of Lagos State have moved against what they termed ‘imposition’ of the lawmaker representing Somolu I state constituency, Hon. Rotimi Olowo, for the fifth term ahead of the party’s primaries for 2023 general elections.

In a rally held across the constituency on Wednesday to oppose Olowo’s likely emergence as the party’s candidate for Somolu I, the party leaders and members said all aspirants should be given a level playing field to contest at the primary, and not be imposed on the party.

Olowo, a member of the state house of assembly representing Somolu constituency 1, is contesting for a fifth term in office.

The protesting stakeholders, who brandished different placards with inscriptions like ‘No to 20 years direct’, ‘Liberation for Somolu’, ‘O To Ge’, among others, had their procession on Bajulaye,Apata, Baale, Awofeso streets, before addressing newsmen at the party’s local government secretariat in Somolu.

Speaking during the rally, chairman of APC in Somolu LGA, Olugbenga Abdullahi, said the APC state executives must listen to the grievances of the members and avoid the imposition of an aspirant on the constituency.

While alleging that the lawmaker is being bankrolled by some leaders of the party at the state level, he urged the party’s national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, to urgently wade in before the primaries to avoid any hostile response from the people of Somolu.

He said, “The people are pouring out their grievances. As a party leader, you must listen to your followers. You can see the crowd. I have to join them because I don’t want the party to lose. We must listen to them. That’s why I’m joining the crowd and you can see how peaceful it is.

“Their grievances was inflicted by the state chairman of the party, Cornelius Ojelabi. He’s trying to impose a candidate on the others. There are about eleven candidates in Somolu LGA. And what we are saying is that you must give all the candidates a level playing ground to be able to exercise their democratic rights. Olowo should come and contest.

“We are making out grievances known to the national leadership of the party. In an attempt to impose Olowo, the party will be taking a very huge risk. There’s a little to which a single person can do. The party should allow him contest on his own merit. Don’t impose him on us. There must be fairness. He has done 16 years and that’s enough.”

Similarly. a leader of the party in Somolu, Ifejowo Adeyemi, said Olowo has served in the state assembly for 16 years and should allow other members to represent the constituency in 2023.

“It is a pity it has to come this way. I remember when we started with him. We never knew it would be a torturous journey that will end this way. He served under three governors: Babatunde Fashola, Akinwunmi Ambode and Babajide Sanwo-Olu and we feel it is time for him to go so that other aspirants can come in.

“Our take is that he should go home. Let other fresh brains come and serve the people. He needs to bow out honourably.”

Meanwhile, efforts to speak to the lawmaker proved abortive as he didn’t respond to his calls and messages sent to him.

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