South west lawmakers, including some speakers and their predecessors, have backed the calls for power shift to the geo-political zone region in 2023.
The speakers, who were joined by their predecessors, deputy speakers and other state lawmakers at a meeting in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital, also called for unity in the zone.
They lauded the contributions of the All Progressives Congress (APC) national leader, Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, to national development, promising to back his bid, if he declares a presidential ambition.
The lawmakers, who converged on Carlton Gate Exclusive Hotel, maintained that the zone should produce the next president to foster equity, fairness and justice in the ruling party and the country.
At the meeting, 20 speakers and their predecessors past speakers of states, reiterated their loyalty and solidarity with the national leader.
Lagos State House of Assembly Speaker Mudashiru Obasa, who was the convener, introduced the Bola Ahmed Tinubu (BAT) Foundation and Movement to the gathering.
He said the Foundation has a mandate to propagate Tinubu’s ideals.
Obasa said although the former Lagos State governor has not declared his intention to run for the highest office, it is important to deliberate on power shift and raise awareness about the need for the region to put its House in order.
He urged the current and former speakers to set up the template that would herald the actualisation of the foundation’s agenda, if Tinubu decides to run.
BAT Foundation National Coordinator Ambassador Aliyu Saulawa said the foundation was committed to the push for zoning and power shift to the Southwest.
The Lagos Speaker said Tinubu is eminently qualified to succeed President Muhammadu Buhari at the expiration of his tenure.
He lauded Tinubu’s option of embracing principle by supporting President Muhammadu Buhari during the first APC primary and 2019 election.
Saulawa described Tinubu as an outstanding Yoruba man with the capacity, experience and means required for the race.
He said: “Tinubu still needs to do more networking in Yoruba land, especially amongst serving and past governors so that voices of dissent can be reduced to the bearest minimum.
“All stakeholders here present should go back home and start the Asiwaju Tinubu presidential project, pending when he will come out to agree to contest.
“All speakers present must commence beneficial political interaction with traditional rulers across the Southwest.”
At the meeting were: Olakunle Oluomo (Ogun Speaker); Adeyemi Ikoforiji (former Lagos Speaker); Suraju Adekunbi (former Ogun Speaker); Muyiwa Oladipo (former Ogun Speaker); Asimiyu Alarape (former Oyo Speaker); Prof Mojeed Alabi (former Osun Speaker); Ayo Agbonmusemi (Ondo); Victor Olabimtan (Ondo); Kenneth Olawale (Ondo) AND Kola Adefemi (former Ekiti Speaker).
Others were: Taofiq Abdusalam (Ondo); Oluwasegunota Bolarinwa (Ondo); Patrick Ajigbolamu (Ekiti); Adejare Bello (former Osun Speaker); Wale Afolabi; Jokotola Pelumi (former Lagos State Speaker); Simeon Olufemi Popoola (Osun Deputy Speaker); J. Gunju (former Oyo Speaker and Titi Oseni (former Ogun Speaker).
Credit THE NATION