The National leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu, on Thursday, said President Muhammadu Buhari would not have become the President in 2015 without the contribution of Chief Bisi Akande, who was the first Chairman of the party and also a former governor of Osun State.
Tinubu spoke at the presentation of a book ‘ My Participations’ written by Chief Akande which Chronicles his political journey and struggle. The event was held at Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos.
While narrating events that led to the emergence of President Muhammadu Buhari as the President in 2015, Tinubu said Chief Akande was instrumental to the political merger which paved the way for the then Gen. Muhammadu Buhari (rtd) to contest the Presidency and won.
“As a crowning achievement regarding party leadership, he served as the APC interim chairman, helping to shepherd the historic merger of several major parties into one. Without Baba Akande’s sage guidance, that merger might never have come to pass.
“We owe him deep gratitude for his singular devotion to consummating the complicated merger in such a positive manner that then candidate General Muhammadu Buhari was able to demonstrate his popularity by achieving a monumental victory in the 2015 election,” Tinubu said.
Tinubu commended Chief Akande for publishing his political struggle, adding the book would educate the younger generation.
“Every now and then, we come across a person so exemplary and excellent that one word seems to fit them perfectly. Chief Bisi Akande is such a person.
“Our lives are better because of the selfless public and private contributions he has made to this national family we call Nigeria.
“Thankfully, he decided to make a written record of the events, ideas and lessons of his profound life so they may serve to enlighten and educate both the present and the future.
“Being a key light in our political firmament, whatever Baba says about his life also doubles as an intimate account of the political story of Nigeria.
“Baba Akande represents what a public figure in Nigeria ought to be. He is what many should aspire to be. From humble beginnings, Baba Akande rose through hard work, intellect, courage, perseverance, sacrifice, dedication and what he called ‘self-tuition’. Baba did not walk the easy road,” Tinubu added.
He also described Chief Akande as a man of integrity with a ‘strong character.’
“He earned things the hard and principled way. Nothing deterred him. Though easy-going in demeanor, he was always strong of character.”
The event was attended by President Muhammadu Buhari, the Senate President, Ahmed Lawan, Lagos State governor, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Ekiti State governor, Dr. Kayode Fayemi, Osun State governor, Gboyega Oyetola, Ogun State governor, Dapo Abiodun, Kebbi State governor, Abubakar Bagudu, Kwara State governor, Abdulrahman Abdul-Rasaq, Minister of Youths and Sport, Sunday Dare, Ooni of Ife as well as Oba of Lagos, members of the Senate and House of Representatives, and Speakers of Lagos, Osun and Ogun House of Assemblies.