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Tinubu calls for South West Integration

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Asiwaju Bola Tinubu, former governor of Lagos State and Action Congress of Nigeria (ACN) national leader, has rallied the Yoruba South West to the cause of regional integration, saying only such a move could save the region from marginalisation.

Speaking at the 2011 Ojude Oba festival in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State, Asiwaju Tinubu told the people of the region not to waste the opportunities the crop of ACN governments in the region offered to aim at economic integration and economically develop the region, just as it was during the Obafemi Awolowo golden era in the First Republic, when the old West was the clear pacesetter.

“We are ready to embark on regional integration and development,” he pledged amidst thunderous cheers of Asiwaju! Jagaban! from the crowd. “And the Yoruba now have five governors in place to deliver on regional integration that will economically empower our people and    deliver prosperity.”

He told the crowd that the era of deceitful politics was over, adding that the ruling ACN in the region had ushered in a new era.

Extolling the culture and tradition of the Ijebu, Asiwaju Tinubu said the Ojude Oba festival is a fitting testimony to religious tolerance among the Ijebu, noting though it had an Islamic bent, every Ijebu son and daughter treated the festival as a yearly homecoming.

He said the festival was a clear determination by the Ijebu to develop themselves by themselves, adding that the rest of the country ought to learn from that philosophy of self-determination.

Toasting the Awujale of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Kayode Adetona, he said the monarch had always displayed uncommon courage and exemplary leadership, even during harsh military rule when the Ijebu royal father stuck to his principles, despite all odds, under the military rule of Gen. Sani Abacha.

“Your kind of leadership is rare”, Tinubu told the Awujale.    “It is only    a traditional ruler like you that can gather this kind of crowd.”

He urged others to follow the steps of the Awujale.  “Just as we have great rulers that we can trust, we must be wary of rulers who only care about themselves alone,” he said.