THE governorship election in Lagos State is already a gathering storm as the candidates have gone into high-wire campaigns to sway the votes in their favour on March 18.
Interestingly, the outcome of the February 25 presidential election has sent shivers through the spine of political heavyweights in the state.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of the All Progressives Congress, APC; Dr Olajide Adediran of the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP; and Mr. Gbadebo Rhodes-Vivour of the Labour Party, LP, are considered frontline candidates in the contest.
The March 18 election has been dubbed a three horse-race and may end up being a two horse-race if alliances are formed before the poll.
The candidates have embarked on moves aimed at boosting their chances by getting endorsements from various ethnic and religious groups.
While the state chapter of the APC is sulking over the February 25 loss, it has gone back to its drawing board.
There are, however, allegations that the refusal of some APC leaders to ‘spread’ the largesse to party faithful contributed to the party’s loss.
Following APC’s loss during the presidential election, there were perceived moves by the LP and PDP to align and dislodge the APC.
Unfortunately, the proposed alliance failed to take off as the two parties could not decide on which of the candidates should step down for the other.
Debunking claims of an alliance with LP ahead of the governorship and House of Assembly elections, intially scheduled for March 11 but now postponed to March 18, the PDP’s Publicity Secretary, Hakeem Amode, said the report that its candidate, Adediran, was planning to step down is false.
Despite the APC’s loss on February 25, Governor Sanwo-Olu is making moves to get endorsements from religious bodies.
Recently, leaders of the Pentecostal Fellowship of Nigeria, PFN, in Lagos State threw their weight behind the governor for a second term, saying he had done well in the last four years.
Leaders of the fellowship, who spoke after a meeting in Ikeja, urged all Christians to vote for Sanwo-Olu.
Those present at the emergency meeting were the Chairman, Secretary and other PFN leaders, including Apostle Enyinnaya Okwuonu, Pastor Mahmood Akindejoye and Bishop Theophilus Ajose.
Ajose, who said it was the Church that requested a Christian governor, noted that the PFN is solidly behind Sanwo-Olu.
He said: “The church in Lagos State asked for a Christian Governor and Governor Sanwo-Olu has done very well in the last four years. This gubernatorial election is not about any political party but about the candidate.
“Mr Sanwo-Olu has made Christians very proud and has governed the state without any religious bias. He is one of us and the Church is speaking with one voice that Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu deserves our support again.”
Similarly, the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN, in Lagos State endorsed Sanwo-Olu for a second term in office.
Speaking during a press conference at the Chapel of Christ The Light in Ikeja, the chairman of the association, Rev. Stephen Adegbite said that Sanwo-Olu and his deputy, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, have performed excellently well in the state.