An Address Delivered By His Excellency, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, Governor of Lagos State, at The Traffic Summit Held at Civic Centre, Victoria Island on Thursday 26th November, 2015

An Address Delivered By His Excellency, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, Governor of Lagos State, at The Traffic Summit Held at Civic Centre, Victoria Island on Thursday 26th November, 2015

I want to welcome everyone present here this morning to this one-day summit with the belief that we would leave here with an action plan to redress a major challenge facing Lagos State.

Like any other major cosmopolitan and populous state, I do not need to gather consultants or participants to intimate me with the challenges facing us on our roads. Being at the saddle of leadership in the last six months has brought me closer to the menace than just being a commuter.

Integrated traffic management through planning, execution, monitoring and control have long existed in one form or the other. From traffic lights, bus stops identification, laybys and traffic wardens at various points on our streets to the days of odd and even number plates.

With the realities on ground, we need practical and innovative solutions that can address our current challenges and deliver immediate dividends and future aspirations.

Lagos in many ways is a victim of it’s own success, as many people leave other states and travel to Lagos seeking better opportunities. More Nigerians want to reside in Lagos; this obviously comes with some challenges.

As one of the leading commercial centres in Africa and an emerging mega City-State, we need to go back to the drawing board and agree on how our transportation sector can be effectively and efficiently operated, to support the kind of trade and investment we want to continually attract.

We need to collectively examine how the transportation sector can improve public service delivery through better institutional framework; quality transport infrastructure and road network efficiency; then tackle wasteful and socially harmful transport patterns.

You will agree with me that the ease of travelling, mobility and communication are critical fuels for our State’s economic engine. Therefore, at this summit today, reflecting on our circumstances of high population increase, as well as pressing need for economic growth, we must evaluate and articulate smarter and effective strategies that would reduce congestion across our roads.

Furthermore. It is important that we work together on how to ensure a more commuter friendly and productive Lagos that promotes a shared sense of vision and leadership opportunity for us all as city leaders (from public, voluntary and private sectors).

We must also consider how to make other means of transportation more viable and attractive to reduce the pressure on our roads.

Gathered here today are key stakeholders in all areas of traffic and transportation in this State. You have the power, capability and intellectual knowledge to bring practical, innovative and creative ways of approaching the challenges facing us.

I urge you all to participate keenly and ensure we come up with the actions that will guarantee higher productivity in the State.

As a government that is keen on promoting business and creating wealth opportunities for our residents, we are committed to seeking and finding sustainable and comprehensive solutions to our traffic challenges.

We have the political will and are ready to take whatever tough decisions you come out with to resolve these challenges. We owe it to the people of Lagos to ensure Lagos works for us all.

Tackling traffic is a good place to start; a good place to begin the significant change our people expect.

Our mission remains the same. Let us make Lagos work for all.

 

Thank You.

Itesiwaju Eko; Loje wa logun!

Akinwunmi Ambode

Governor of Lagos State.

26th November, 2015

I Have Political Will To Tackle Traffic Gridlock – Ambode

I Have Political Will To Tackle Traffic Gridlock – Ambode

…Charges Stakeholders On Effective Traffic Strategies

…Lagos Accounts For 70% Of Nigeria’s Transportation Network, Says FRSC Boss

 Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Thursday assured the people of the State of his strong political will to take tough decisions and implement effective strategies to bring about a robust traffic management system in the State.

Governor Ambode, who stated this at the Traffic Management and Transportation Summit organised by the State Government, said as a government, his administration is keenly committed to make Lagos work for all, and that effective traffic management, for him, is a good place to start.

The Governor observed that with the realities on ground, there is the need for practical and innovative solutions to address the traffic challenges confronting the State to deliver immediate dividends and future aspirations.

He said: “Lagos, in many ways, is a victim of its own success as many people leave other states and travel to Lagos seeking better opportunities. More Nigerians want to reside in Lagos and this obviously comes with some challenges.”

“As one of the leading commercial centres and an emerging City-State, we need to go back to the drawing board and agree on how our transportation sector can be effectively and efficiently operated to support the kind of trade and investment we want to continually attract.”

“We need to collectively examine how transportation sector can improve public sector delivery through better institutional framework, quality transport infrastructure and then tackle wasteful and socially harmful transport patterns. You will agree with me that the ease of travelling, mobility and communication are critical fuels for our State economic engine,” the Governor said.

Reflecting on the circumstances of high population and pressing need for economic growth, Governor Ambode said there is a strong need for stakeholders in the transport sector to evaluate and articulate smarter and effective strategies that would reduce congestion across the roads.

While emphasising the need for all stakeholders to work together to ensure a commuter-friendly and productive Lagos that promotes a shared sense of vision and leadership opportunities for all, the Governor stressed the need for the consideration of how to make other means of transportation more viable and attractive to reduce the pressure on the roads.

He added: “As a Government that is keen on promoting business and creating wealth opportunities for our residents, we are committed to seeking and funding substantial and comprehensive solutions to traffic challenges, therefore we are ready to take tough recommendations you come out with.”

“We owe it to the people to ensure Lagos works for all. Tackling traffic is a good place to start; a good place to begin the significant change that our people expect from us. Let us make Lagos work for us all,” the Governor said.

Earlier in his welcome address, Lagos State Commissioner for Transportation, Dr. Dayo Mobereola said the summit was put together in furtherance of Governor Ambode’s determination and commitment to genuinely address the traffic challenges confronting the State.

He added that the summit was also aimed at jointly developing workable system and solution with all stakeholders with the view to articulate and share knowledge and explore innovative approaches to free the roads and help in developing a robust traffic management.

On his part, Corps Marshal and Chief Executive of Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC), Boboye Oyeyemi said because of its strategic importance to Nigeria’s economy, Lagos accounts for about 70 percent of the country’s transportation network and over 30 percent of vehicular density in Nigeria.

He added that there are about 40 petroleum tank farms in Lagos, and that the best way to tackle traffic gridlock is full enforcement of traffic laws and regulations.

While calling for synergy among the enforcement agencies, Oyeyemi also urged the State Government to establish Mobile Traffic Courts so as to further boost and compliment traffic enforcement.

The summit was with the theme: “Tackling Current, Evolving And Future Traffic Management Needs Of Lagos State.”

 There were sector perspectives from the Lagos State Traffic Management Authority (LASTMA), the Nigerian Police, the Nigerian Ports Authority (NPA), among others, while the lead paper was presented by Dr. Gboyega Banjo, a traffic management expert who worked with the World Bank for 17 years.

Ambode Woos Commonwealth Investors To Lagos

Ambode Woos Commonwealth Investors To Lagos

…Attends Business Forum In Malta

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, on Wednesday stepped up his government’s campaign for direct foreign investment in Lagos, where he seized the opportunity at the just concluded Common Wealth Business Forum in Malta, to invite investors to advantage of the numerous investment opportunities that abound in the state.

The Commonwealth Business Forum in Malta, which held from Tuesday 24 to Thursday 26 November, attracted over 1,200 business leaders from 80 countries.

Lagos was the toast of many investors as the Special Session hosted by the State Government had prospective investors from several countries in attendance.

Governor Ambode, who was accompanied to the forum by a strong contingent consisting Commissioners and a Special Adviser from the State Executive Council, intimated investors to various investment opportunities in Lagos State.

“The strong team I have here with me is a statement of our commitment to facilitating business in Lagos for investors. With the establishment of the Office of Overseas Affairs and Investment, the government will eliminate whatever bottle-necks that may want to frustrate investors. This Office is a one-stop shop that will handle all your needs and ensure that there are no obstacles hindering investors who come to our State,” the Governor said.

Rt. Hon. Mark Simmonds of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council, who anchored the Lagos State-sponsored session, said he was very impressed with the interest shown in Lagos. He said that this was a strong indication that Lagos is not just an investment destination but an emerging economic hub.

There were strong representations from the Kingdom of Nepal, Kuwait, Malaysia and Malta.

Lord Jonathan Marland, Chairman of the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council, particularly commended the Lagos team for its role and contribution to the forum.

Earlier, Governor Ambode who delivered a keynote address at the Plenary Session of the Forum titled, “The Commonwealth, the EU, and the Global Economic Cooperation: A One Way Ticket”, charged all nations on global economic cooperation stating that “whether you are in the EU, in the Commonwealth or whatever other organization out there, the only true common wealth we all have is to ensure a healthy financial and economic global order through economic cooperation.”

The Governor also fielded questions as part of a panel to discuss cooperation and other economic challenges within the Commonwealth.

Those in the Governor’s entourage include the Special Adviser, Office of Overseas Affairs and Investment, Professor Ademola Abass; Commissioner for Transport, Mr. Dayo Mobereola; Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Engineer Ganiyu Johnson, among others.

Lagos Doctors Hail Ambode For Resolving Issues In Health Sector

Lagos Doctors Hail Ambode For Resolving Issues In Health Sector

…Gov Urges Medical Practitioners To Uphold Oath In Discharging Duties

Doctors in Lagos on Wednesday hailed the efforts of the State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode for his efforts towards resolving the outstanding issues relating to welfare of doctors as well as improving the healthcare delivery in the state.

Speaking at the General Meeting/Scientific Conference & Continuing Medical Education of the Medical Guild in Lagos, Chairman of the Guild, Dr. Biyi Kufo acknowledged the effort of the Governor towards improving on the health sector in the state since he assumed office.

“We had met with Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode during the run up to the governorship election and informed him about the issues we have and he made a promise to resolve the issues if he was elected”.

“We make no apologies with a designation of our Governor as the song we have been waiting for to come and change a heart of stone. Governor Ambode has directed that all the key issues be resolved; the suspension of intake of new residents into the Residency Training Program LASUTH has been lifted and admission of the new resident have commenced; the appointment of doctors as contract workers has been stopped”, Kufo said.

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He also disclosed that Governor Ambode had directed that medical doctors currently on contracts should be converted to permanent staff and the salaries during the three months of industrial action be paid.

“I am delighted to inform the house that having delivered on all the promises, we are grateful to Governor Ambode not only for fulfilling his promise to us but has also rekindled the faith of our membership in the political leadership in Lagos State, we have also commenced discussions with government over implementation of the Consolidated Medical Salary Structure (CONMESS)”, he said.

On his part, Chairman of the Nigeria Medical Association, Lagos State Chapter, Dr. Tope Ojo,   commended the governor for his various discussions with the medical personnel especially over implementation of the corrected CONMESS salary scale.

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In his keynote address, Governor Ambode, urged medical professionals to continuously uphold the Hippocratic Oath in the discharge of their duties, just as he assured them of his administration’s commitment to their concerns.

He also assured that the state government under his watch will be open to suggestions for efficient health care delivery systems in the state.

Governor Ambode, who was represented by his Special Adviser on Primary Health Care, Dr. Femi Onanuga, said his administration has committed public funds to uplift medical infrastructure so as ensure that first class healthcare service is delivered to the people of the state.

He said his administration has also embarked on recruitment of medical personnel in order to improve the synergy between personnel and infrastructure in the health sector, adding that he believed the conference is a platform to generate ideas towards addressing issues in the sector.

Lagos Rehabilitates 282 Roads in Six Months

Lagos Rehabilitates 282 Roads in Six Months

…Earmarks 189 Roads For Next Phase

The Lagos State Government on Tuesday said that over 282 roads have been rehabilitated in the last six months, just as it assured residents that the ongoing construction across the metropolis will be completed in due course.

General Manager of the Lagos State Public Works Corporation (LSPWC), Engr. Ayotunde Sodeinde gave the assurance on Tuesday while briefing newsmen on the work done so far said that the State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode’s desire is to see that the roads across the state are motorable.

“We have done 282 roads since June 2015 till date. We have listed another 189 roads and anytime from now we would start. We would work every day and night to ensure we make life more comfortable for residents in the state”, he said.

He listed some of the roads completed and fully rehabilitated to include Metal Box Road, Acme Road inward Akilo, Ejigbo-Ikotun road among others while extensive fixing of potholes were also carried out on other roads. He also listed some roads such as Alfa Nla/Capitol road in Agege, Brown Street in Oshodi, Okota road in Isolo as some of the roads under construction.

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“Metal Box Road and Acme Road are special projects, they are not routine projects that we do. The routine projects are like 280. If I start to mention all of them, it would take a lot of time.  We are doing the second asphalting on Ejigbo, the place is quite motorable now. We had finished that Ikotun Ijegun. Why I said it is 85 percent completed is because of the drainage system”.

Sodeinde said the rehabilitation of these roads has to a large extent reduced the traffic congestion in the last three weeks, saying that the Public Works gangs are on the road day and night to give the roads a facelift.

“The Governor is not sitting down, he wants all the roads in Lagos to be motorable. He wants the hard life that Lagosians are going through to be alleviated. He cannot stand Lagosians going through hardship and most of these roads”.

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“People are testifying now that the traffic is moving. You know when the roads are good, it means economic growth, people will be able to move from one part of the state to another, transport their goods without stress, you will notice that even the hoodlums and pickpockets, they operate when there is gridlock, as far as gridlock that is being caused by potholes are concerned, we are on our feet to ensure that we put the road in order to reduce the traffic.

He assured that by the end of December, the LSPWC would have rehabilitated more roads across the state.

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He said the ongoing rehabilitation works have also seen the repair of 117 federal government roads in the state, adding that if funds are available, more roads will be fixed.

Also speaking, Commissioner of Information and Strategy, Mr. Steve Ayorinde said in continuation of the government’s effort to fix the roads, the Governor approved the award of 114 roads, two from each of the 57 local governments across the state.

He also assured Lagosians that the process or road rehabilitation and reconstruction is continuous and more roads will be rehabilitated in the next quarter.

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“All these roads which would be done by the local government will come with standard drainage system, walk ways and street lights. The state government had nothing to do with choosing the contractors, the local governments have been mandated to do that and this will create jobs within each local government”, Ayorinde said.