Cover Stories, Seat of Power

Loyalists rain encomiums on Tinubu @ 64

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-Obasa, Mamora, Jimoh, Bamigbetan, Oduntan, Ayodele, Adebanjo and Eshinlokun on pillars of politics

Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, the National Leader of All Progressives Congress (APC) and former governor of Lagos State, is certainly one of the most influential politicians in the country today. His political influence soared high in 2015, when the opposition party won not only the presidential elections but also in more states and the National Assembly.

It was therefore not surprising when his annual birthday colloquium which usually holds in Lagos was not only taken to Abuja but also attracted the high and mighty.

ENCOMIUM Weekly spoke with his loyalists on the impact of the man in their lives.

 

‘After my parents, Asiwaju is next’ – Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, Speaker,  Lagos House of Assembly

How and when did you meet Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?

Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa

Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Ajayi Obasa

I first met him at Chief Dapo Sarumi’s place on Oyewole Street, Agege, during the SDP days in 1991. I was contesting as an Independent Candidate for the post of SDP delegate. Chief Dapo Sarumi later persuaded me to join the party (SDP). When I did and I became a very frequent at Chief Sarumi’s place it allowed me to meet Tinubu.

How has he impacted on your life since you met him?

Aside my parents, I don’t think anybody has impacted on my life as much as Asiwaju. I could recall my first primary election into the (Lagos) House of Assembly in 2003, at the Airport Hotel. For my constituency (Agege 1), there were three aspirants and six delegates. I had three delegates, another aspirant had two and the last aspirant had only one.

All of a sudden, the one delegate of the last aspirant withdraw and joined the second aspirant with two delegates, making it difficult for anyone of us emerging winner.

Asiwaju Tinubu, who at the primary that day as the leader of the party, stood up and announced that the delegate who withdraw from the last aspirant was wrong, that such is not acceptable in any election. That was how I eventually emerged the winner of that primary.

Even after l emerged the winner, some people went to him (Tinubu) that I should be dropped for their candidate. He refused and said since I emerged the winner, I should be allowed to enjoy my victory.

Again for my third term in the Assembly, some leaders of the party went to prompt his (Tinubu) daughter (Folashade Tinubu-Ojo) to contest for my seat (Agege 1). Again Asiwaju  came to my rescue and said, no, that I have been a loyal member of the party and so I should be allowed to contest for the seat again.

The issue of the Speakership is to the knowledge of everybody. He has always been there for me either intentionally or unintentionally. He has always been my saving grace. Whatever I am today, politically, you cannot ignore or erase all these miraculous intervention of Asiwaju.

So, what is your wish to him on his 64th birthday?

I wish him long life and prosperity. I pray that Almighty Allah will continue to strengthen and bless him, bless his children and anything that has to do with him should continue to have the blessing of Almighty Allah. He started well and my prayer is that Almighty Allah will make him the ruler of this country one day.

 

‘HE LEADS THE PACK’ – Senator Olorunmbe Mamora

Mamora 1-Fullscreen capture 462016 124517 PMHow and when did you meet Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?

I met Asiwaju Bola Tinubu during the formative stage of Alliance for Democracy (AD) in 1998, during the military regime of General Abdulsalami Abubakar.

How has he impacted on your life since you met him?

Yes, I am quick to say that there are individuals that have been very supportive. I cannot write my political history without mentioning them copiously, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu is one of such people. He leads the pack of such people that I will remain grateful to.

Don’t forget that I was the Speaker of the House of Assembly when he was the governor of Lagos State between 199 and 2003. We worked together very well.

I was also a Senator between 2003 and 2011 under his leadership. I am his loyalist.

What do you wish him on his 64th birthday?

I wish him happy birthday. I wish him many more years in good health and service to his fatherland.

 

’He makes more people happy’’ – HON. JIDE JIMOH

hon. jide jimoh

hon. jide jimoh

How and when did you meet Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?

I want to give thanks to Almighty Allah, who has given me the opportunity to know somebody like Asiwaju Ahmed Tinubu since 1989. That was during SDP and NRC days. I was in SDP then. We were in the same caucus known as Primrose Circle.

He is a dogged fighter, a man with wisdom and highly courageous. He is ready to assist anybody any time. He is not a selfish human being. He is a man that believes in unity and togetherness. He is a man that believes in making more people happy.

In what way would you say he has impacted on your life?

God has used Asiwaju to help people like me and some others in political circle. When he was a governor, I was a member of Lagos House of Assembly representing Mainland Constituency 11.

We worked together from 1999 to 2007. I was part of the team that changed Lagos State for the better during Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu as governor. He has helped me to attain the status that I have reached today. I thank God.

What is your wish to him on the occasion of his 64th birthday?

I pray that Almighty God to grant him more wisdom, long life, prosperity and better things to come.

 

‘He saved me from impeachment’ – HON. ADEWALE AYODELE, Former Chairman Amuwo-Odofin LGA

Ayodele-AdewaleWhen and how did you meet Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?

I met Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu in 1999 as the President of Lagos State University Student Union Government. Chief Abraham Adesanya and Senator Ayo Fasannu had approached us (students) to support Asiwaju (Tinubu) during their campaign on our campus in Ojo.

How has he impacted you since you met him?

He has in many ways. He has been overseeing my development from school as a young activist at that time when people find it very difficult to understand the students movement and our agitations. The most memorable one was when I was to be wrongfully impeached as Chairman of Amuwo-Odofin Local Government. I called him on phone that I was asked to resign by some party big wigs.

He was in Abuja for a meeting and had to cut short his trip and came back to Lagos the following day.

He told me not to resign that I should go ahead to prove my innocence, which I did and survived that plot by my political detractors. My story in life cannot be complete without him.

He was one of the many in the civil rights movement that emboldened me to be fearless and face the military at the barricade.

What is your message to him on the occasion of his 64th birthday?

God has blessed him with many things that anyone and everyone will ever wish for in life, but in all, the only one things I pray for is for him to be with God in heaven, at the end of time.

 

‘’He’s a giver, and givers never lack’ – HON. FEMI ADEBANJO – House of Representatives member

adebanjoHow and when did you meet Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?

I have known him to be a great philanthropist and a great politician. I am still searching for a word to qualify him in these two areas of human endeavour that he is deft at.

Has he in away way touch your life?

Glory be to God Almighty. God has used Tinubu to get me to where I am today. Right from (Lagos) House of Assembly in 1999, Chairman Alimosho LGA (twice), Special Adviser to Governor Fashola and now a member of House of Representatives.

What is your wish to him on the occasion of his 64th birthday?

I will continue to wish him good health, long life and many God’s grace continue to abide with him.

He will continue to prosper because he is a giver and a giver never lacks.

 

‘HE’S A MAN OF GARGANTUAN DRIVE’ – Hon. Kehinde Bamigbetan Special Adviser to Governor Ambode

kehinde-bamigbetan1How and when did you meet Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?

I met him through Segun Ayobolu (Chief Press Secretary to Asiwaju Tinubu when he was governor of Lagos State) who consulted me on challenges on media positioning of the administration.

The first project focused on cartoons and perception of the government.

How has he impacted you since you met him?

In the past I was tempted to urge him to take it easy. I have found out however that he is a man of gargantuan drive

What is your message to him on the occasion of his 64th birthday?

I can only pray that God protect him and reward his pursuit of the common good.

 

‘He lifts people up’ – HON. TAYO ODUNTAN

Hon. Tayo Oduntan is the Deputy Whip of Lagos House of Assembly. She is a third term member of the Assembly. She was also the Vice Chairman of Alimosho Local Government Council and a Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Women Affairs and Poverty Alleviation.

 

How and when did you meet Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu?

I met Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu in 1990-91, when he was contesting for the Senate. I was the vice chairman of Alimosho LGA then.

How has he impacted you since you met him?

I have learnt tolerance from him. I have learnt never to harbor grudges because life is too short. I have learnt from him to lift people up as I go up myself. I have learnt to always be ready to put smiles on people’s faces. I have learnt to do good if I expect to reap good, and I have learnt to make more friends rather than enemies.

What is your message to him on the occasion of his 64th birthday?

My prayer for him is that God will grant him many more years in good health and in the service to humanity.

 

‘I owe my political exploits to him’’ – RT. HON. WASIU SANNI-ESHINLOKUN

eshinlokunHon. Wasiu Sanni-Eshinlokun is the Deputy Speaker of Lagos House of Assembly. This is his second term in the House of Assembly. He has also been a two term chairman of Lagos Island Local Government Council. He was once the Senior Special Assistant to the Governor on Legislative and Political Matters.

This is what he said about Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu…

 

How and when did you meet Tinubu?

Around 1991, during the Social Democratic Party (SDP) days (Moribund Third Republic).

How has he impacted your life since you knew him?

I owe my political exploits to him and his lovely wife, Remi Tinubu.

What is your message to him on the occasion of his 64th birthday?

May God continue to bless all his endeavours. He is always happy making his followers great. May his children be great and happy too. Many happy returns, dad.

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