On Monday, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu said his re-election for a second term has reaffirmed that Lagos has chosen competence and experience on the march to true greatness.
Mr Sanwo-Olu said this at the Lagos House Marina while giving the victory speech for his re-election, following the official announcement by the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC).
The governor was declared the winner of the Lagos State gubernatorial election at 1.15 a.m. and scored 762,134 valid votes to LP’s 312,329 and PDP’s 62,449 votes.
He said that elections were over now, governance must continue, and the dividends of democracy must continue to be delivered, as there must be no break and no time off.
According to him, his government will keep all the promises made to the people of Lagos state.
‘‘Lagosians, you did not just vote for Babajide Sanwo-Olu. You voted for a greater Lagos. I promise that together we shall achieve this. This is a promise that shall not be broken. A greater Lagos shall be ours.
”Let me boldly and proudly say that we are already well on the way to that greater Lagos, and we now have four more years to join hands to advance in ways that will pleasantly surprise even the most sceptical amongst us,” he said.
Mr Sanwo-Olu said that four years ago, the people of Lagos gave him cause to deliver a similar victory speech. Since then, he had been conscious of the great responsibility upon him and the administration.
‘‘I have worked very hard to live up to this responsibility of governing the essential subnational economy in Africa. We certainly could not have done this by ourselves. What we have achieved, both in the last four years and in the just-concluded election, could not have happened without a long list of supporters and partners.
”First and foremost, let me thank the Almighty God, to whom we owe our very breath and who has spared our lives to see this day. I am also very grateful to all of you, the good people of Lagos—everyone, not just those who voted for us or those registered to vote. Lagos is what it is today because of you, regardless of ethnicity, religion, political affiliation, gender or age.
‘‘We are a vibrant and thriving hub of commerce, finance, entrepreneurship, innovation and culture because of the diversity that has come to define us over the decades and the centuries. Thank you,” he said.
The governor commended fellow contestants for their participation in the democratic process and their contribution to creating a truly competitive political space in Lagos.
According to him, in the true spirit of sportsmanship, there is no victor, no vanquished.
He said that during the campaign, sadly, a lot of divisive rhetoric was used, as some tried to make the elections about ethnicity and religion when they should only have been about capacity, competence and experience.
‘‘We saw hateful and hurtful ethnic profiling by fellow citizens – which is totally out of place for us as Lagosians, the proud residents of West Africa’s pre-eminent melting pot. I want to recognise and salute all the multitudes of residents who refused to succumb to those who sought and still seek to divide us with their unguarded and inciting comments.
‘‘Unfortunately, there are reports of skirmishes in some local government areas wherein some citizens were reported to have been injured. We strongly condemn these reprehensible incidents – that is not who we are. The relevant law enforcement and security agencies have been directed to investigate these law breaches and ensure that those found guilty face the full wrath of the law.
”Now that the elections are over, we must reaffirm the spirit of solidarity and togetherness that binds us as Lagosians.
”As I said in my last pre-election address, we have a lot of work to do in working and moving past the divisive rhetoric that has shaped the course of this election cycle,” Sanwo-Olu said.
He said it was very significant, and this could not be overemphasised that what united all as residents was far more critical and substantial than whatever differences existed.
He said that the true Lagos spirit remained a welcoming, embracing, liberal one, not a divisive, exclusionary one.
”In the days and weeks and months ahead, we will continue to do everything to demonstrate and amplify this,” the governor said.
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