Apex leadership of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in Ijede Local Council Development Area (LCDA) of Ikorodu Division of Lagos State, Southwest, Nigeria, on Thursday (yesterday), parleyed with aspirants from Ijede, that are vying for the Ikorodu Constituency II seat in the Lagos State House of Assembly.
THE IMPACT gathered that the purpose of the meeting was to make them see reasons to step down for a consensus candidate in order to ensure that Ijede gets the opportunity to clinch the seat in accordance with the rotational principles put in place by leaders in the three councils that made up the constituency.
The Thursday’s meeting, held at the APC Secretariat in Ijede, was the second time in about three weeks that the traditional institution and political leadership in Ijede were inviting aspirants to a meeting.
The traditional institution, led by the Regent/Olisa, High Chief Musediq Alliu, had, about three weeks ago, met with the aspirants on the same issue.
The first meeting with the Alajede – in – Council, THE IMPACT gathered, was attended by six aspirants which included Hon. Salisu Fathiu Jimoh, former Chairman, Ijede LCDA, Hon. Gbenga Oshin, former member, Lagos State House of Assembly, Mr Hameed Olalekan Aroyewun (HOA), a former Commissioner nominee and prominent youth leader, Mr Kunle Aliasu Matti, a senior civil servant and prominent youth leader, Mr Taoreed Akeem Babajide and one other.
It was gathered that the traditional fathers ascertained the six aspirants that attended the meeting as bona-fide indigenes of the town and that they are free and competent enough to represent the town/Council.
One other issue that we gathered also emanated from the meeting was that aspirants charged traditional Chiefs to ensure a level playing ground for all aspirants and should not favour anyone.
The rotational principle, which was threatened for about seven years, is again being threatened as the incumbent, Hon. Nuruden Solaja, who is from Imota LCDA, is hell bent on seeking a third term.
Sources at the meeting yesterday told our reporter that the political leaders in Ijede are bothered about the large number of aspirants and feared that that might divide Ijede’s votes if they are all allowed to go into the primary election, as this, according to leaders, may give the incumbent an advantage.
All the aspirants attended the first meeting were said to be present at the yesterday’s meeting, while few others who recently joined the race were also in attendance.
One of new entrants into the race is Mr Aro Moshood Abiodun (AMA) who was the PDP candidate for Constituency II Assembly seat in the 2019 General Elections.
Also, one Mr Yussuf, a former Supervisor for Works in Ijede LCDA, is reported to have joined the race too.
We equally gathered that Mr Oluwatosin Onamade has also joined the race but was absent at yesterday’s meeting.
It was further gathered that the meeting was the first phase of a process which would culminate into having a consensus candidate which other aspirants and entire Ijede community would rally round to clinch the APC ticket for the Constituency ll Assembly seat and prevent the incumbent from securing a third term at the expense of Ijede.
“What we discussed was mainly about how we are going to synergise present a consensus candidate that will face the incumbent, Solaja (Hon. Nurudeen Solaja), if it eventually comes to going into the primary election with him”, one of the sources at the meeting said.
“It was also resolved that leaders should invite and talk to him (Hon. Solaja) to drop his aspiration so that he would not breach the mutual arrangement between the three communities”.
It was also gathered that the party leaders in Ijede intend to remind Hon Solaja of his promise when he first won the ticket seven years ago that he would respect the rotational arrangement and support Ijede after his two terms.
Another source told THE IMPACT that it was an interactive session where party leaders enjoined us to campaign without rancour.
“It was an interactive session. We were charged not to see ourselves as enemies”.
He also confirmed that they were told to prepare themselves to drop their aspiration for the best among them in the interest of Ijede if the situation comes to that.
“It’s true, we were told to be ready to accept the decision of the party particularly as it regards the possibility of stepping down for the best candidate that would confront the incumbent”.
It was also gathered that the apex leaders in Ijede have also met the two chieftains of the Governance Advisory Council (GAC) in the division, on the matter.