A member of the National Executive Committee of the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Issa Aremu, has formally declared to run for 2019 governorship election in Kwara State.
Mr Aremu, who is also the General Secretary of Textile Workers Union, said he will be running under the flag of Labour Party of Nigeria.
According to a statement made available on Thursday, he made the declaration at the Nelson Mandela centenary birthday celebration in Ilorin, Kwara State on Wednesday.
The event was attended by politicians, trade union activists and Mr Aremu’s supporters.
The labour leader, who was the guest speaker at Mandela centenary activity, said he was motivated to join the gubernatorial race because Kwara State needs “a radical change from underdevelopment, mass hunger, and poverty”.
Mr Aremu, who lamented that unlike first generation states such as Kano, Rivers and Lagos, which he said have advanced in roads, health, education, security and public welfare, Kwara in recent times is poorly governed through “exclusivist unaccountable governance.”
He said it was time for Kwarans to “organise and enthrone inclusive governance for mass prosperity for all.”
He said the “well- having” of the few ruling elite had denied “the well- being” of many Kwarans.
Mr Aremu recalled that at creation, Kwara was the “fastest growing state with bold Development Plans which laid solid foundations for accelerated economic growth, increased productivity in agriculture, industrial development and improved the quality of life of the people through the provision of necessary infrastructure.”
He added, “Kwara must return to development planning.”
Mr Aremu further lamented that the state ranks 28th on the ranking of states by states GDP “beaten to it by newer states like Imo, Edo and Oyo.”
He pledged that his governorship will bring back productivity through “re-industrialisation.”
The declaration was preceded by an interactive session on the “State of (Kwara) State” during which discussants agreed that most of the industries in the state have closed down with mass loss of thousands of jobs of youths.
They resolved that the state needed a dynamic and accountable leadership that must be ambitious with state building.
Mr Aremu is from Ijagbo in the same Kwara South Senatorial District as Governor Abdulfatah Ahmed who will conclude his second term in 2019.