The last may not have been heard of the current face-off between Governor Akinwunmi Ambode and national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Bola Ahmed, as some serving lawmakers in Lagos State might eventually be victims.
For instance, the senator representing Lagos East, Mr. Gbenga Ashafa, who is perceived to be a close ally of the governor and Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, may have also been penciled down for removal, as Tinubu is allegedly backing one of his political associates and member of the State Assembly representing Kosofe Constituency 1, Mr. Bayo Osinowo, for the race.
Among the accusations against Ashafa is his accompanying Ambode to obtain the governorship nomination form on Monday while other notable leaders of the party and the Mandate Group, loyal to the one-time governor went with former Commissioner of Commerce and Industry, Mr. Jide Sanwo-Olu, to pick his.
Although, the speculation that Ashafa might be replaced has been in circulation for long basically on the premise that the senator is sympathetic to the camp of Senate President Bukola Saraki.
It, however, became clearer yesterday when the entire structure of Lagos APC was dispatched to endorse Osinowo during his declaration for the ticket in the forthcoming 2019 elections.
In a programme, entitled, Pepperito’s Formal Declaration for Senate, the state structure led by the deputy vice chairman, Lagos East, Asipa Kaoli Olusanya, members of the State Assembly superintended by the speaker, Mr. Mudashiru Obasa, the 16 local government chairmen in the zone, the apex elders committee in the district presided over by Otunba Busura Alebiosu, and the council of traditional rulers endorsed Osinowo’s ambition.
Also in the endorsement team were past and serving House of Representatives members, led by Mr. Rotimi Agunsoye, a delegation from the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) as well as market associations and youth bodies. Osinowo expressed the hope of getting the ticket, adding that he had received the support of the party leadership.
He said: “Permit me to say with every sense of humility that with my 16 years in the Lagos State House of Assembly, I have acquired enough legislative experience to propel me for greater achievements in the senate.”
The motion to endorse Osinowo by the legislature was raised by the Majority Leader, Sanai Agunbiade while Obasa canvassed support for the senatorial aspirant. But a source from the Ashafa camp denied Tinubu’s support for Osinowo, stating that the national leader had also given his blessings to the incumbent. Others who have obtained forms for the contest are erstwhile Commissioner for Transport, Chief Lanre Razak, and Chief Anifowose Denge.