From Laide Raheem, Abeokuta

A former governor of Ogun State, Gbenga Daniel, has warned the political class against taking the electorate for granted as the country prepares for the 2023 general elections.

Daniel, who is the All Progressives Congress (APC) senatorial candidate for Ogun East, also stressed the need for Nigeria to return to agriculture in order to enhance the food self-sufficiency quest of the country.

The former governor stated this during a courtesy visit to all the traditional rulers in Ikenne Local Government Area, who gathered at the palace of Alaperu of Iperu, Oba Adeleke Idowu Basibo.

The event, which was part of Daniel’s ongoing ward-to-ward tour across the nine local government areas in the Ogun East Senatorial District, preceded the empowerment and award of scholarships to indigent students in Ikenne LG.

He had earlier toured several communities in the local government, including Ogere, Iperu, Irolu, Ilishan and Ikenne where he solicited the support of the people for  all APC candidates in the 2023 elections.

The former governor, who stated that Nigerians are increasingly becoming politically conscious, asked political leaders to always carry the people along by ensuring inclusive governance and popular participation.

He said despite the lack of formidable opponents against him in the 2023 senatorial race, he would not desist from engaging with the people to know their yearnings and get first-hand information about their expectation from him.

Speaking against the backdrop of global food shortage, the former governor said Nigeria urgently needs to return to agriculture as a viable way of increasing local food production and ensuring sustainable economy.

He explained that his interest in revitalizing agriculture and complementing the sector with necessary infrastructure informed why the idea of an agro-cargo airport was conceived during his tenure as governor about 15 years ago.

He added that his administration acquired the land for the airport project in Ikenne, paid compensation to affected land owners and did the airport designs before leaving office.

“There is global food shortage, there is hunger in the land. Nigeria needs to return to agriculture as alternative means of generating revenue and foreign exchange and also increase local food sufficiency.

“Our belief in agriculture is the same reason why we started giving out agriculture tractors as part of our empowerment programme. It is telling the people the next way to go which is agriculture”, he said.

Daniel commended the incumbent governor, Dapo Abiodun, for continuing with the execution of the airport project which, he noted, was already nearing completion.

He noted that it was a great honour for him to be nominated to represent Ogun East in the National Assembly like many illustrious indigenes of the state, including late Senator Abraham Adesanya; Senator Biyi Durojaiye; Senator Jubril Martins-Kuye and Senator Adegbenga Kaka.

A major highlight of the ward-to-ward tour is the Gateway Front Foundation Free Medical Screening programme where over 800 aged and babies were attended to as well as empowerment raffle where branded Toyota saloon car, five Motorcycles, 2.5KVA generator were won as well as over 500 other items, including sewing machines and grinding machines.

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Source: news