Cover Stories, Politics

Fashola avoids Oba Akiolu over Ambode’s endorsement

TUNDE FASHOLA

‘Fails to see him twice in Government House’

Oba Akiolu

Oba Akiolu

Certainly, the last has not been heard on the public endorsement of Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode as the APC governorship candidate in Lagos State by Oba Rilwan Akiolu, the Oba of Lagos.

If the information we are getting is anything to go by, the Kabiyesi’s endorsement of Ambode may have strained his relationship with the governor of Lagos, Mr. Babatunde Fashola who we gathered did not take any liking to the endorsement.

ENCOMIUM Weekly gathered that Oba Rilwan Akiolu, who is always welcomed in the State House, Marina (the governor’s residence) anytime with or without invitation has become a persona non-grata of sort, since his open endorsement of Mr. Ambode.

We learnt from a reliable source that twice, the paramount ruler visited the State House, Marina and he was told he could not see the governor because he was sleeping.

Unlike before when the oba would be entertained even before the governor’s arrival, he was told that he could not wait for the governor because he was too tired to come down to see him.

ENCOMIUM Weekly further gathered that to save the oba further embarrassment, one of the senior aides of the governor told a prominent prince of Lagos to tell the oba to always seek appointment with the governor before coming to the State House.

The treatment meted out to Kabiyesi in the State House was part of issues discussed at a meeting of Lagos princes and princesses held last week in the house of one of the princes of Lagos Island. The meeting also did not like derogatory comments made by people over the oba’s endorsement of Mr. Ambode.

They, therefore, resolved to select 30 princes and princesses to meet with the oba over his utterances on public issues that is attracting odium to the exalted stool. Since Oba Rilwan Akiolu openly endorsed Mr. Ambode as Fashola’s successor on Thursday, May 15, 2014, during a book launch, there has been reactions.

Governor Fashola, we gathered, did not only dislike Oba Akiolu’s public endorsement of Ambode but the comments he made about Dr. Obafemi Hamzat, the Lagos State Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, who Governor Fashola is rooting for as his successor.

It was Dr. Hamzat that Oba Akilou was referring to when he said inter alia “For me Osuolale Aremu, son of an Ewekoro traditional ruler will not become a governor where I am. I am not afraid to say that and I don’t hide my feelings.”

This statement did not go down well with Governor Fashola who is doing everything to promote Dr. Hamzat as his successor.

-TOLANI ABATTI

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