Excitement as Ambode officially hands over to Sanwo-Olu


LAGOS—THE out- going Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, Tuesday, officially handed over to the Governor-elect, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, ahead of his inauguration today as the atmosphere at the Lagos State House, Alausa, Ikeja, was filled with excitement.

GOVERNOR Akinwunmi Ambode of Lagos State and 2019 the All Progressives Congress, APC, governorship candidate, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu Shortly after the handing over at the Government House, Alausa, the governor-elect told newsmen that it “was a very private formal hand over.”

The governor-elect was accompanied by his running-mate in the election, Dr Obafemi Hamzat. This came as the Alliance for Democracy, AD, and its governorship candidate, Chief Owolabi Salis at an Election Petition Tribunal sitting in Ikeja lost their bid to stop the swearing-in of Mr. Sanwo-Olu, as the Executive Governor of Lagos State today. Ambode handed over the administration to Sanwo-Olu, symbolically, to the admiration of those in attendance.

Earlier, in a broadcast to the people of the state Ambode expressed gratitude to those who contributed immensely to the development of the state. In his farewell address, he said: “For this administration, policies, programmes and projects aimed at lifting more of our people out of poverty and making every part of the State safe, accessible and economically viable were always the priority; the driving force behind all our decisions and plans.

“A few of our policies might have been unpopular but these were decisions taken with the best interest of our State in mind. With the benefit of hindsight, maybe we could have done some things differently but our intention was always clear, for the good of Lagos.

“It has been a remarkable journey which has had a lasting impact in my life and I want to thank all Lagosians for the experience of these last four years.”

Meanwhile, the News Agency of Nigeria, NAN, reports that in a ruling delivered at 3.16pm yesterday, the Chairman of the tribunal, Justice T. T Asua said that the petition of AD and its governorship candidate lacked merit.

Justice Asua said: “The main purpose of an interlocutory injunction as rightly argued by the respondents is to preserve the ‘res’ that is the subject matter of the case. “In this case, the petitioners have failed to show via their affidavit evidence that the res, which is the governorship seat of Lagos State, is in danger of being destroyed and has to be preserved by the issuance of the restraining order sought.”

Dismissing the application, the Chairman of the Tribunal noted that restraining Sanwo-Olu from being sworn-in as Governor will lead to a chaotic situation in the state. “To crown it all, restraining the second defendant from being sworn in as governor of Lagos State when the tenure of the incumbent expires on the 29th of May 2019 creates a vacuum in the governance of Lagos State.

“This throws spanners in the works, causing confusion and leaving the entire Lagos State at the mercy of the first petitioner’s (AD) personal ambition to govern the state. “Such an ugly scenario shall not be allowed by this Tribunal. “In a final analysis, we hold that this application lacks merit and is hereby dismissed,” Justice Asua said.

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