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Ndigbo, Hausa indigenes endorse Abiru for Lagos-East senatorial seat

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

Ahead of the October 31st Lagos East senatorial bye-election, Hausa and Igbo residents in the state have endorsed the All Progressives Congress (APC) candidate, Tokunbo Abiru, as their sole representative for the seat.

They said that decision to endorse Abiru for Lagos-east senatorial seat was based on how he successfully transformed Polaris Bank from a liability firm to a profitable financial organisation under four years.

Abiru was endorsed by leaders of the ethnic nationalities in Lagos State led by Apex Leader, Arewa United Group, Mamuda Ibrahim and Coordinator of Ndigbo in Lagos, Chief Uche Okpotemba, at separate meetings with chairman, Lagos East Senatorial Bye-Election Campaign Council, Kaoli Olusanya, yesterday, in Ikorodu.

The apex leader, Ibrahim, observed that the bye-election was a task for the Hausas in the state and that they have started mobilising the people to vote for the APC on October 31.

“We have been enjoying support from the Government of Lagos State. We have also enjoyed robust relationship with the people of Lagos State. However, we look forward to improved relationship in the future,” he said.

After the endorsement, the Hausa leaders urged the federal government to grant Lagos State special status, just as they lamented the state’s diverse infrastructure challenges since Federal Capital Territory (FCT) has been moved to Abuja.

On the special status, State Secretary, Arewa United Group, Musa Sali, acknowledged diverse infrastructure challenges Lagos State had been battling since Federal Capital Territory (FCT) had been moved to Abuja almost three decades ago.

Sali argued that since the movement of the capital from Lagos to Abuja, the state, inspite of the huge population its manage, has been confronted with grave infrastructure deficit over the years.

“As a result, Lagos has a huge burden to the state government due to the task of managing the state’s infrastructure deficit. We are demanding special status for Lagos to enable it address infrastructure deficit facing it.

“Without special grants, the state will not be able to address these challenges. We therefore ask the federal government to grant Lagos State special status like other former federal capitals across the world,” he said.

After the meeting with Ndigbo, Abiru said if elected a senator representing Lagos East, his focus would be to initiate bills and sponsor motions that would guarantee protection of lives and properties nationwide.

He, also, assured the leaders of the ethnic nationalities that he would promote legislation that could deepen peaceful co-existence among Nigerians irrespective of where they live or transact businesses and improve competitive business environments.

“I will equally focus on legislation that will drive foreign and indigenous investments; open up economy for the prosperity of all and promote easy access to working capital no matter who you are or where you come from.”

At the Arewa meeting, Abiru observed that the Arewa residents, who had been residing in Lagos for decades, treasured the prosperity of Lagos and value unity within the state.

“Aside, many of you were even born, transacting your business here without fear or trepidation. Without hesitation, Arewa people have been part of the growth and development of Lagos State for several decades.

“As people that dominate food and perishable goods businesses across the state and indeed Nigeria, you have been paying taxes here; performing other civic duties and engaging in community development in one way or the other. This x-rays your love and passion for the state you chose as your home,” Abiru explained.

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