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Lagos: Sanwo-Olu collects Certificate of Return, says better days ahead

The Lagos State Governor-elect, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, says better times are ahead for Lagos residents, with good things in the offing for them when he comes on board.

Sanwo-Olu made the promise after collecting his Certificate of Return from the Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) on Friday in Lagos.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that Sanwo-Olu and his deputy, Dr Obafemi Hamzat, were presented their certificates of return by INEC at the commission’s office in Sabo, Yaba.

“We are taking up this leadership and saying that the confidence that you have put in us will not be put to shame. We will not misuse the confidence that you have put in us,”Sanwo-Olu said.

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He told the residents of the state to prepare for better times, assuring: ”Good things are in the offing for all of us. We know that Lagosians truly deserve the best.”

The governor-elect called on his opponents that lost during the March 9 election to support him in making the state enviable, assuring them of his resolve to run an inclusive government.

“I want to extend congratulations to all the other 44 candidates that were not so successful, but I dare say that victory to one is victory to all.

“It is victory to all of us, it is a victory for the entire Lagosians. It is a call to order, it is a call that there is no victor no vanquished. All of us are on the same pedestal, that is, to make life a lot better for our people.

“That is why on the campaign train, we said we are going to run an inclusive government, we will bring about strategies that will take Lagos to greater heights.

“We are using this unique opportunity to open our doors; we don’t even have a door again, the doors are open for all our other colleagues in the other parties that we are one and the same,” he said.

Sanwo-Olu urged his opponents to join him in building capacity of children, the aged, the youth and women.

“Let us build the schools, the hospitals, traffic management, the public transportation, the environment to make Lagos a cynosure of the entire African race.

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“It is not about Femi and I, it is not about my own family, it is about reenacting and recharging a true Lagos that all of us have stood for.

“We are using this opportunity to tell our colleagues in other parties the doors are open, that we are one and the same,” he said.

In his speech, Dr Adekunle Ogunmola, the INEC National Commissioner in Charge of Ondo, Ogun and Lagos States, described the victory of Sanwo-Olu as an opportunity given by God to serve.

He told Sanwo-Olu that by his election, he was coming on board as governor of Lagos State and not of his party.

“Lagosians expect you to discharge your responsibility in honesty and integrity, and dedication to duty.

“I have no doubt in my mind that you have the qualities to do all these. Lagosians are discerning people; when they make choice, they know what they are doing.”

According to him, INEC is desirous of improving the electoral process and of deepening democracy in Nigeria, which requires the cooperation of all and sundry.

Earlier in his address, Mr Sam Olumekun, the Resident Electoral Commissioner of INEC in Lagos State, said that the March 9 gubernatorial election that produced Sanwo-Olu was keenly contested by 45 contestants.

Olumekun, who noted that the governorship election was free of rancour and was adjudged credible, peaceful, free and fair, thanked all stakeholders for their cooperation, support and synergy.

The INEC boss, however, decried the poor turnout of voters during elections, saying such is not acceptable in a sophisticated society like Lagos.

“I wish to admonish the leadership of political parties, pressure groups, civil society organisations, religious leaders, etc to rise up to this occasion in the area of voter sensitisation, education and mobilisation,” he said.

Olumekun advised Sanwo-Olu to avoid blaming the outgoing administration.

“The journey to a better Lagos is laid squarely in your court,” he said.(NAN)