President, Bola Tinubu, says he invoked the spirit of freedom during his campaign in Ogun State.
According to him, during the campaign season, he used some of his popular statements which resonated with Nigerians and his supporters to invoke the spirit.
Tinubu said the hardship that accompanied the Central Bank of Nigeria cash swap policy during the campaigns period forced him to invoke the spirit of freedom in the South West state.
The President stated this while speaking at the palace of the Awujale and paramount ruler of Ijebuland, Oba Sikiru Adetona, in Ijebu Ode, Ogun State.
He said, “I invoked the spirit of freedom in Ogun.
“It is a homecoming and I owe so much to all of you and there is so much to thank you for. Because of the way you have taken me and the way you’ve responded to me, all I can say is thank you.
“To many of you, thank you for being there for me and being there for the country. You demonstrated so much loyalty, so much commitment and voted at a very crucial time.
“Your monies were confiscated. The cash swap didn’t work. It was terrible then. I realised that and I came to Ogun State to invoke the spirit of freedom for which we are noted for.
“I invoked that spirit twice. The spirit of Baba (referring to Awujale). The spirit of Baba – Emi l’okan (it’s my turn), that’s Baba. The spirit for being blunt and that is him.
“And the second spirit is that of money (Naira scarcity), ‘ama dibo ama wole’ (we will vote and we will win) even if there is no money. And that, ever since, has been the spirit that is driving me to serve.”
Tinubu had in the runup to the 2023 general elections set the social media on fire when he voiced out his frustration during a presidential campaign in Abeokuta, saying it was through his efforts that the immediate past president, Muhammadu Buhari, got elected in 2015 after he had failed thrice.
It was at that event that Tinubu made his now famous quote, “emilokan” (It’s my turn).
“It is my time. I’m educated. I’m experienced. I have been serving people for a long time. Bring me the Presidency, it is my turn,’’ Tinubu had said.
The then All Progressives Congress presidential candidate had also pointed at the Ogun State Governor Dapo Abiodun, who he referred to as ‘eleyi’ as one of those whose victory he ensured during the 2019 elections.
“Look at this one (eleyi) seated behind me, Dapo, he wouldn’t have become governor without my support,” he had said.
Tinubu stated this while addressing APC delegates in Ogun State.
Tinubu’s outburst generated reactions from Nigerians, with many loyalists of the ruling APC, including its National Chairman, Abdullahi Adamu, describing his remarks as a veiled slight of the then President Buhari and Governor Abiodun.
Tinubu, while also reacting to the scarcity of the new naira notes and fuel shortage which provoked riots across the country, accused unnamed powerful persons of masterminding the crisis to frustrate his presidential aspirations. To corroborate this allegation, the then Kaduna State governor, Nasir El-Rufai, accused some Presidency officials, including the Central Bank Governor, Godwin Emefiele, of working against Tinubu.