Tinubu Vs Ambode: ‘Forgive Lagos gov, ‘witches and wizards’ behind his sins’ – Dele Momodu begs APC

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A veteran journalist, Dele Momodu, has appealed to a National Leader of the All Progressives Congress, APC, Bola Tinubu to forgive the Lagos State Governor, Akinwunmi Ambode for any “sin” he may have committed.

Momodu, who is the Publisher of Ovation Magazine, said Tinubu should forgive Ambode because the APC leader will be held responsible of any “plight” that his face-off with Ambode may cause the state and his party.

Momodu, a former presidential aspirant, claimed that the face-off between Tinubu and Ambode was caused by some “witches and wizards.”

He stressed that, though Ambode has been accused of not “looking after anybody,” Tinubu should consider the good work of the governor.

Following a reported relationship breakdown between Ambode and Tinubu, the latter was said to have anointed one Babajide Sanwo-Olu as the next governor of Lagos State.

Just recently, the Vice Chairman of the APC in Lagos East Senatorial District, Asipa Kaoli Olusanya, had disclosed that Tinubu instructed the 57 Local Council Chairmen in the state to work towards the emergence of Sanwo-Olu as the next governor of the state.

However, Momodu in his latest article, Pendulum, urged Tinubu not to “fire the bullet” because Ambode deserves a second chance.

The article reads partly: “Let me say categorically that no one has sent me to you because what is fashionable these days is the web of conspiracy stories on social medial.

“You must have guessed what this is all about, already. My appeal to you, openly and frontally, is to plead with you to handle the Akinwunmi Ambode debacle with utmost care and tact.

“Until you brought him out from retirement, not many people ever knew him and his achievements as the Lagos State Accountant-General.

“He was obviously a young, shy but brilliant man who knew how to get results. Your unusual sagacity and prescience in unearthing gems like Fashola and Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, the Vice-President birthed another genius of an administrator in Ambode. He has succeeded in following and emulating the glorious heights set by you and Fashola and Lagos State has again been better for the choice you made. I have read all sorts about how power changed him and how he has not been too grateful and appreciative to all those who gave him this uncommon favour and the seat of power that he currently occupies. I have also sat with people who swore never to forgive him even if you do.

“We all know though, that once you give direction, all the sabre-rattling by these political journey-men will cease and they will abide by your decision.

“Hmmm, Asiwaju, at the end of the day, no matter what happens, you would be held responsible for the plight of your party, APC and Lagos State, for good or for bad.

“It is normal for every mortal to feel let down. It is even always tempting for humans to get angry and seek vengeance but after every war, the gladiators often come together on the table to start a new life as if they were not killing themselves in recent past. I can’t claim to know all the sins Governor Ambode committed to warrant his present predicament. But whatever it was, we are told he has begged and pleaded, his wife has apologised, many distinguished Nigerians have beseeched that you forgive and allow him to complete his good work. I have read the complaints of many of your foot-soldiers, Sir, the reasons and excuses for dumping Ambode are very similar, he has not looked after anybody, he has been standoffish, who does he think he is, and so on. These are at the very worst, personal issues that could naturally lead to bickering and animosity. I doubt if the issue was more about lack of performance in accordance with the mandate of improving Lagos which you gave to him. Not even uncharitable persons would accuse him of that. Politics is indeed a delicate and dangerous game. A few months back, no one would have envisaged this type of strife or brouhaha to visit a man everyone called the most hardworking Governor in Nigeria. If I want to sound superstitious and to put it the African way, this is the handiwork of witches and wizards.

“I’m aware that my very dear Brother, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, incidentally, I’m 20 times closer to him than Ambode, has been dragged into the cauldron of intrigue and power struggle in Lagos State. I will love him to be Governor, because he is undoubtedly qualified, but not in the manner many of your supporters are going about it.

“If he is so destined, he may still be Governor, some day. This is my reason for saying that the apparent unnecessary and unwarranted humiliation of the current Governor is bizarre and definitely uncalled for.

“The giddiness of the moment must urgently give way to sobriety. If care is not taken ‘kata kata’ may burst! It seems that the Lagos electorate is being taken for granted and that it is assumed that they are merely dogs that can be controlled by the whistle of the dog handler. Asiwaju, you never know, the unpredictable may happen and it has happened before. I do not pray that history repeats itself within a short time, at a time when you hold sway as the undisputed power broker. If that happens, God forbid, most of those saying there is no one like you today, will swiftly disappear before you can blink an eye. I venture to say that most of them do not personally like you. They live in fear of you and not in awe of you. I hear and know what many of them say behind you. If one asks them, why haven’t they told you face-to-face, the usual answer is “you will be called an enemy once you tell Oga the truth…”

“I remain your dear younger one who will not shirk from telling you the plain truth!

“These are people very close to you, but do not have your interest at heart. They are only concerned with their selfish interests and self-preservation.

“What would be worse is for this grave matter not to be settled and Babajide’s head is used to break coconut. This would be sad.

“Everything must be done to bring your team together again as one. Both of them can still work perfectly for the good of the State. There is nothing wrong in having two brilliant, diligent and industrious people on the same ticket to advance the prospects of the State, with the recognition that the deputy is already anointed to take over. I believe that this may be a veritable solution to the present imbroglio and that it can work to assuage the feelings and aspirations of all concerned.

“The present situation is sad and unfortunate. I seriously pity those who think you and Ambode cannot be friends again. I know from your antecedents that you do not practice politics like that. You are much more astute. You are buoyed by the philosophy of ‘itesiwaju Eko’. That demands sacrifices for the Lagos State you envision. I believe this is one sacrifice that is necessary to make. It is difficult but not impossible. You must forgive and make up, before it is too late. All those who have intervened are waiting, and watching, to see if you would disregard, and disrespect, them all collectively. That would be truly unfortunate.

“Finally, Asiwaju, you have shown your power and demonstrated the ability to squash and rout, but, please, don’t fire the bullet. Ambode deserves a second chance.”

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