From Fred Itua, Abuja
Leader of Middlebelt Presidency agitations, Moses Ayom, on Thursday, said the key role played by former Ogun State governor, and presidential aspirant on the platform of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Ibikunke Amosun, in President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration’s economic transformation policy, has given him an advantage over other presidential aspirants.
Ayom who spoke when Amosun officially declared his ambition to contest the presidential election in 2023 in Abuja on Thursday, specifically revealed how Amosun had played key roles in the President’s economic policies.
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He said: “At this juncture, let me reveal a little about Amosun’s closeness to Mr. President’s economic transformation policy.
“Within a year of President Buhari’s ascension to power in January 2016, Amosun played a leading role when he, along with few others like the CBN Governor, Minister of Trade, Africa’s greatest business giant Aliko Dangote and my humble self accompanied the President to China to sign three monumental MEMORANDA OF UNDERSTANDING.
“Ladies and gentlemen, that singular presidential initiative which Amosun was part of has now produced the $2.5 billion fertilizer equipment investment in the world here in Nigeria and owned by the ever enterprising Alhaji Aliko Dangote”
“Your Excellencies may wish to note that on the same day the agreement that produced the Dangote Fertilizer equipment plant was signed, another agreement was signed by my company, Granite and Marble for the establishment of a $1.2 billion mining equipment firm here in Abuja. However, this is yet to be activated and with kind of commitment already displayed by Amosun, we are certain that this will be one of his first priorities when he is sworn in as President on the 29th of May, 2023.”
He submitted that if we are to build a Nigeria that all of us and our grand and great grand children will be happy and proud of in future, the right man for the job is Distinguished Senator Ibikunle Amosun.
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He equally praised the Ekiti State governor, and presidential aspirant, Kayode Fayemi for taking time out of his very tight schedule to attend the declaration ceremony of Amosun saying this is the display of “rare courage and diamond spirit of sportsmanship.”
He also assured Middlebelt leaders that Amosun is trusted to hand over power to the region at the end of his administration.
Ayom cited instances when Amosun had said that Benue people in particular are at home with him since the days he served in Benue state.
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In an interview with newsmen at the Shehu Yar’adua Centre in Abuja where Amosun declared his intention to contest the 2023 presidential election on Thursday, the Benue State born APC presidential aspirant who stepped down last week, said the long standing relationship between the Middlebelt and the South West regions would be revived by Amosun’s presidency.
Ayom further assured that he had since in Amosun, the hope of delivering his socio-economic development vision for Nigeria just as he gave insight into why Amosun would do a good job in the presidency.
He said: “I had hoped that if elected as President, we could correct the historical political marginalisation against the Middle Belt region not having produced a democratically President for Nigeria.
“Unfortunately, our dear party, the All Progressives Congress (APC), barely three weeks to the presidential primary election, is yet to take decision on zoning. For this reason, I quitted the presidential race, believing that he who fights and run away, lives to fight another. Ever since I quitted the race and ever since then, my mind has been looking out for someone who is a friend of the region and can be relied upon to hand over the mantle of political leadership to the Middle Belt at the appointed time. Distinguished ladies and gentleman, I have stopped searching because I have found that person: he is no other person but the very Distinguished Senator Ibikunle Amosun, former Governor of Ogun State.”
He also explained that the people of the South West and the Middle Belt are historically political friends as demonstrated by the revered political leader of the Middle Belt, late J. S. Tarka, and the iconic nationalist and Yoruba leader, Chief Obafemi Awolowo who struck the friendship between the two geopolitical regions in the First Republic.
“The friendship exists today. I am invoking the political spirit of J.S Tarka to rekindle that friendship with the people of the South West using Senator Ibikunle Amosun as the point of political contact to Chief Obafemi Awolowo.
Ayom said Amosun would rekindle the transformative governance displayed by Awolowo pointing out that “we all know the governance vision and philosophy of Chief Obafemi Awolowo and how he developed and transformed the South Western region into the educational and economic powerhouse of modern Nigeria: Senator Ibikunke Amosun will do same for Nigeria and even more if elected as President.”
“Senator Ibikunle Amosun is a creative and resourceful leader and manager of human and material resources. He is a democrat of the highest grade. As the Governor of Ogun State, he turned Ogun State into the number one foreign investment destination in Nigeria. If elected President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria he will do the same economic and investment magic he did in Ogun State.”