By Abubakar Yunusa
The Igala Leadership Forum (ILF), a distinguished assembly of Igala elites representing all nine local governments, including Bassa, has formally endorsed Hon. Leke Abejide, the gubernatorial candidate of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), as the preferred choice for the upcoming Kogi State gubernatorial election.
In a collective stance, the Igala group has expressed its concern over the state’s prolonged underdevelopment, poverty, and insecurity, attributing these challenges to the lack of competent and honest leadership by successive governors over the past two decades.
With a keen desire to bring about a transformative shift in the state’s trajectory, the ILF earnestly urges the people of Kogi State to exercise their voting rights judiciously and select the most suitable candidate for the task at hand.
The elite forum emphasizes that supporting Hon. Leke Abejide’s candidacy aligns with their commitment to stand in solidarity with the people of Kogi West, who have consistently supported the Igala community.
The group also takes a critical stance against Usman Jibrin of the Accord party and Muritala Yakubu Ajaka of the SDP, accusing them of leveraging the current Igala situation for personal gains and vendetta.
The ILF asserts that such actions have diverted attention from the genuine aspirations of the Igala community, necessitating a redirection and repositioning ahead of future elections.
Ibrahim Oma Koji Attah, in a statement on behalf of the ILF, affirms Hon. Leke’s friendship and sensitivity towards the Igala community, praising his track record of avoiding reckless statements or derogatory remarks about the largest tribe in the state.
Furthermore, Oma-Koji Attah extends a call to other Igala candidates, urging them to foster collaboration and ensure that the historical relationship between the East and the West remains mutually beneficial.
The group uses this platform to firmly caution Yahaya Bello against resorting to thuggery during the 2023 elections, asserting that vigilant eyes will be monitoring the process to ensure a fair and just outcome.
Additionally, the ILF condemns the continuous misappropriation of workers’ salaries by the government and places confidence in the Leke/Omede ticket to address this pressing issue.
Meanwhile,the ILF encourages the Igala and Bassa communities to regard the people of Okun as brothers, fostering unity among the regions.
The group places responsibility on Igala leaders who have engaged in unscrupulous dealings with Usman Jibrin and Muritala Ajaka, thereby undermining the integrity of the 2023 election process. The ILF firmly maintains that the return of the Ebira community to Lugard House in January 2024 must not be allowed.