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Jimi Agbaje defects to APC – Tinubu’s group

Jimi Agbaje defects to APC - Tinubu's group

A former Peoples Democratic Party governorship candidate, Olujimi Kolawole Agbaje, has reportedly defected to the All Progressives Congress.

This is according to claims made on Wednesday by the Tinubu Support Group via its official Facebook page.

While Premium Politics can not verify the claims by TSG yet, there is no official confirmation either from the APC or Agbaje’s camp.

This publication recalls that the pharmacist and politician contested the 2015 governorship poll of Lagos State under the platform of the PDP but lost out to the eventual winner Akinwunmi Ambode.

Agbaje also tried again under the PDP in the 2019 governorship election and lost again but this time to the incumbent state governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, who ousted the sitting governor, Ambode, during the APC primary after a rumoured fallout with the party’s national leader, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu.

However, Agbaje was once a member of the Action Congress which transformed into what Nigerians now know as the APC.

In a 2013 interview with The Punch Newspaper, Agbaje talked about how he began in politics: “It had to do with the Moshood Abiola/Bashir Tofa presidential election”, he said. “I saw the annulment as a personal insult and an assault on the Nigerian people. This led to my first entry into what I would call activism, working with other concerned professionals” such as Prof. Pat Utomi, Dr Ayo Ighodaro, Asue Ighodalo, Billy Lawson, Oby Ezekwesili, Tola Mobolurin and Hassan Odukale.

Agbaje was in one form of resistance group or the other which ultimately led him to join the socio-political organization, Afenifere where he served as national treasurer.

Based on his affiliation with Afenifere, Jimi Agbaje joined the Action Congress – his first political party. In 2007, Agbaje who had initially aspired to contest for the governor of Lagos State on the platform of the AC left the party to join the Democratic People’s Alliance.

He was among the 11 aspirants that turned their back to the AC when it was alleged that former governor and now APC presidential candidate, Tinubu, had already anointed someone else to succeed him even before the party primaries.

In 2007, Agbaje contested in gubernatorial election on the DPA platform, but eventually, alongside other major contenders – Musiliu Obanikoro of PDP, Femi Pedro of Labour Party (Nigeria) – lost to Babatunde Raji Fashola of the AC.

He left DPA in 2011 and went on to join the ruling PDP following the de-registration of DPA by the Independent National Electoral Commission.

By then, the AC which had become the Action Congress of Nigeria, moved on to become what is now known as the ruling APC – a merger of Nigeria’s three biggest opposition parties – the ACN, the Congress for Progressive Change, the All Nigeria Peoples Party, a faction of the All Progressives Grand Alliance) and the new PDP – a faction of the ruling PDP.

However, on 29 October 2014, Agbaje officially indicated his interest in giving the Lagos State gubernatorial elections another shot by picking up the PDP nomination form. On 8 December 2014, it was reported that he emerged as the candidate of the PDP for the 2015 Lagos State gubernatorial election, having defeated the former Minister of State for Defence, Musiliu Obanikoro, in the primary.

In October 2018, Jimi Agbaje secured the PDP’s ticket to run for the office of the governor of Lagos state. He defeated Adedeji Doherty to secure the ticket. Jimi Agbaje lost to Babajide Sanwo-Olu of the All Progressives Congress, in the Lagos state gubernatorial election on 9 March 2019.

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