Lagos Will Be Delivered To Buhari, APC Candidates, Governor Ambode Vows

Lagos Will Be Delivered To Buhari, APC Candidates, Governor Ambode Vows

…Says President Has Set Nigeria On Path Of Growth

…As Lagos Gov, 8 State Govs, Others Grace APC Presidential Mega Rally

 

Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode,  on Saturday assured President Muhammadu Buhari that residents in Lagos would troop out enmasse on February 16 and deliver the State to him and other National Assembly candidates of the All Progressive Congress (APC).

Governor Ambode, who spoke at the APC Presidential Mega Rally, held at the Teslim Balogun Stadium in Surulere, Lagos, said the President in the last three and half years fully supported the infrastructural growth in the State and would do more if given another mandate of four years.

According to him, the February 16 election was not about tribe or religion, but strictly about job creation, infrastructural development and economic growth, saying that President Buhari has shown total commitment to making life comfortable for residents.

 

President Muhammadu Buhari, with Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode and National Chairman, All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole during PMB meets Organised Private Sector, at the Lagos House, Marina, on Saturday, February 9, 2019.
President Muhammadu Buhari, with Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode and National Chairman, All Progressives Congress (APC), Comrade Adams Oshiomhole during PMB meets Organised Private Sector, at the Lagos House, Marina, on Saturday, February 9, 2019.

“In and outside of the stadium, you can see the crowd that has turned out here and we are very grateful that Lagos has been signed, sealed and delivered to APC already. The message is very clear.

“We appreciate Mr. President for his support to our State in the last three and half years. The achievements that we have recorded in Lagos were possible because of his support. This election is not about tribe or religion, it’s about infrastructure, jobs and the economy and the right path to go is to go to the APC.

“if you see what we are going in Lagos already, you will see that the Airport road is not for the Yorubas or the Igbos or the Hausas, its about making life comfortable for Nigerians and that is why Mr. President has continually supported all our projects by even refunding some of the funds we used for capital projects so that we can complete more projects,” Governor Ambode said.

He said it was important for Nigerians to entrust President Buhari with another four years in office to continue in the trajectory of growth, warning that the return of the opposition party would do nothing but alter the progress made by the Federal Government so far.

“If you remember, the first two years of this administration we were in recession caused by the PDP, but in the last two years, we have stabilized, we have created the groundwork for growth and that is where APC is different from the PDP. They will tell you that they want to make Nigeria work again, but ask them who destroyed Nigeria in the first place?

“Therefore, this election is about moving the economy forward and for this to be possible, we need to continue on the foundation that we have already made in the last four years. APC remains one party, we remain one nation and one family,” the Governor said.

Buhari, who made his entrance into the venue of the rally at about 2:45pm to a tumultuous welcome by the teeming crowd and party faithful, assured that Lagos as commercial capital of Nigeria would continue to receive greater attention in terms of infrastructural renewal and all round economic growth.

Speaking earlier at a session with members of the Organised Private Sector held at Lagos House, Marina, President Buhari said it was gratifying to note that the economic policies of his administration were already making the desired impact as evidenced by steady growth in the economy in the last three years.

ano State Governor, Alhaji Abdullai Ganduje; Oyo State Governor, Sen. Abiola Ajimobi; Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode; Senior Special Assistant to the President, Mrs. Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire and Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State during the President’s arrival for the APC Presidential Rally at the Presidential Wing of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja, on Saturday, February 9, 2019.
Kano State Governor, Alhaji Abdullai Ganduje; Oyo State Governor, Sen. Abiola Ajimobi; Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode; Senior Special Assistant to the President, Mrs. Adejoke Orelope-Adefulire and Governor Atiku Bagudu of Kebbi State during the President’s arrival for the APC Presidential Rally at the Presidential Wing of the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Ikeja, on Saturday, February 9, 2019.

He said the APC government had kept the promise to boost the economy through blocking leakages in government finances, increasing capital expenditure and inflows, and implementing the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP), among others.

“I firmly believe that our economic policies are beginning to make the desired impact. Economic growth has resumed and is continuing to improve. Growth was higher in 2017 than in 2016, data even from external sources shows that it was also higher in 2018 than in 2017. I am confident that as we stay the course, it will be better still at the end of 2019.

“Inflation is coming down steadily, there is stability in the exchange rate and foreign exchange is readily available for genuine business. Foreign reserves are adequate and growing; capital inflows have increased and the trade balance is positive.

“We are paying off debts that were not even publicly acknowledged before now, including those owed to States, the electricity sector, oil marketers, exporters, backlog of salaries of workers and pensioners, amongst others,’’ he said.

WhatsApp Image 2019-02-09 at 5.49.13 PM

Among the organizations which made presentations to the President at the session were Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI), and Nigerian Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME).

Aside Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, Governors of Oyo (Abiola Ajimobi), Kebbi (Atiku Bagudu), Kano (Abdullahi Ganduje), Osun (Gboyega Oyetola), Ekiti (Kayode Fayemi) and Ministers, the session was also attended by many captains of industry including Alhaji Aliko Dangote, Femi Otedola, Oba Otudeko, Jim Ovia, Bismarck Rewane, Chief (Mrs) Nike Akande, among others.

The rally was well attended by the who’s who in the APC including the Governors of Ogun, Osun, Oyo, Ekiti, Ondo, Edo, Kano, Kebbi, National Leader of the APC, Asiwaju Bola Ahmed Tinubu; Mr. Babatunde Fashola, other serving and past Ministers, party chieftains, among many others.

 

Governor Ambode Presents N852.316bn Y2019 Budget To Lagos House Of Assembly

Governor Ambode Presents N852.316bn Y2019 Budget To Lagos House Of Assembly

…Earmarks 54% To Capital Expenditure, 46% For Recurrent

…Targets N775.2bn IGR, To Complete Major Ongoing Projects

 

Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode on Tuesday presented the year 2019 budget proposal of N852.316billion to the House of Assembly, with a pledge that it had been carefully prepared to be all-encompassing and dedicated to complete major ongoing projects in the State.

The Governor said N462.757billion representing 54 percent of the total budget size had been earmarked for capital expenditure, while N389.560billion representing 46 percent had been dedicated to recurrent expenditure, saying that key projects such as the Oshodi-Murtala Mohammed International Airport Road and Oshodi Interchange Terminal, among others would be completed.

He said from inception of his administration, nine key areas were given priority after careful assessment of the needs of the citizens, adding that such had informed the massive investment in the said sectors which he listed to include security, transport / traffic management, economy -including tourism and agriculture, housing, education, health, infrastructure – social and physical, water, wealth creation – skill acquisition/microfinance, e-Governance and enhanced capacity building, sustainable environment and smart city projects.

Giving details of what informed the budget size, Governor Ambode said the performance of Y2018 budget of N1.046trn as at November 2018 stood at 60 percent owing to reduction in revenue projections, while the total revenue stood at N530.192billion.

According to him, “In the outgoing year, however, we experienced a reduction in our revenue projections, which affected our projected performance and our desired implementation of the Y2018 Budget. The overall Budget performance as at November 2018 stood at 60 per cent/N574,206billion with actual cumulative total revenue of N530,192billion/64 per cent, Capital Expenditure closed at N311,930billion/49 per cent and Recurrent Expenditure performed at N262,276billion/82 per cent.

“In preparing the Year 2019 Budget, therefore, we were very mindful of the out-going year performance, the yearnings of our people and the fact that we are going into an election year. Consequently, we are today presenting a Budget that will be all-encompassing, reflect the level of resources that will be available and with special consideration to the completion of major on-going projects in the State.”

While outlining the key components of the Y2019 budget and the sectoral allocations, the Governor said with priority given to completion of major infrastructure projects and smooth transition to the next administration, the government was proposing a total budget size of ‘N852,316,936,483,’ including a deficit financing of N77.086billion which is expected to be sourced from internal loans and other sources.

He added: “The projected total revenue for Year 2019 is ₦775.231billion, of which₦606.291billion is expected to be generated internally, ₦168.940billion is expected from Federal Transfers while a total of  ₦77.086billion will be sourced through deficit financing within our medium term expenditure framework.

“In 2019, as was with our previous budgets, Economic Affairs still dominates the sectoral allocation of the proposed budget. This is due to our continued focus on the completion of major on-going projects such as: Oshodi-Murtala Mohammed International Airport Road; Agege Pen Cinema Flyover; Phase II of Aradagun-Iworo -Epeme Road, Oshodi Interchange Terminal; completion of JK Randle Complex, Onikan Stadium; Imota Rice Mill; Renovation/Furnishing of Lagos Revenue House, amongst others in order to meet their specified deliverable outcomes without any bias or prejudice to others.”

Expressing optimism that the revenues of the State would improve in 2019, Governor Ambode said the government had begun consolidating on the already established public financial management and technology-driven revenue reforms through data integration and use of multi-payment channels, just as he said that every strata of the society would benefit from the budget.

“The Year 2019 Budget has been carefully planned to accommodate all and sundry; women, youth and physically challenged, young and old. We will continue to spread development to all part of our state even as we embark on effective transition knowing fully well that the implementation, failure or success of the Budget depend on all of us,” he said.

Besides, Governor Ambode commended the Speaker and members of the Assembly for the support accorded his administration in the last three and half years, while also acknowledging the role of Royal Fathers, Religious leaders, members of the Business Community, Professional Bodies, Development Partners, Non-Governmental Organisations, public servants and all residents as well as members of the fourth estate of the realm for their various support and contribution during the lifespan of his administration.

In his remarks, Speaker of the House, Rt. Hon Mudashiru Obasa expressed optimism that the budget would be of great benefit to the people of the State, just as he assured that the House would work with the executive to pass the budget.

Lagos, NIWA Begin Talks To End Age-Long Conflict On Waterways Regulation

Lagos, NIWA Begin Talks To End Age-Long Conflict On Waterways Regulation

…Resolution In Best Interest Of All Parties

…Posterity ‘ll Judge You Rightly, Mamora Tells Lagos Gov

 

The Lagos State Government and the National Inland Waterways Authority (NIWA) on Monday expressed readiness to go into talks to facilitate amicable resolution of the age-long tussle between the federal agency and the Lagos State Inland Waterways Authority (LASWA) over regulation and control of the waterways.

The State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode, who said this while receiving NIWA’s Managing Director, Senator Olorunnimbe Mamora and top management staff of the agency on courtesy visit at Lagos House in Alausa, Ikeja, said putting the perennial conflict between NIWA and LASWA behind was the most patriotic thing to do, and that it would also in the best interest of all, especially the economic prosperity of the people.

He said without prejudice to the matter currently before the Supreme Court on the issue, the State Government nonetheless was ready to implement strategies to engender peaceful resolution of the grey areas and points of conflict in the overall interest of the people.

The Governor said it was particularly instructive and beneficial that NIWA was being headed at this particular point in time by Mamora, just as he expressed optimism that the development would translate to the end of hostilities that had been going on for decades between the federal agency and LASWA.

According to him, “We are doing this not just for ourselves; we are doing it for Nigeria and Lagos. I believe strongly that the appointment of Senator Mamora is divine and even prior to his assumption as MD of NIWA and ever since he has taken over, there has not been any major complaints from the controversy between the State Government and NIWA and we are very happy for this.

“Let me reiterate here that I give my total support for the amicable resolution of the issue irrespective of the legal tussle that we have been having over the decades and we also respect the rule of law. We know that whatever the decision of the Supreme Court, it would still have to be implemented by the operators and so I give my commitment and total cooperation that anything that is outstanding, we would resolve amicably.”

While commending the NIWA management for championing mutual relationship, the Governor directed key officers of the State Government to dialogue with the NIWA team with the view of coming up with structured approach to solidify the partnership.

“I give the go ahead to all my management team and key officers to sit down with the management team of NIWA. Whatever grey areas should be resolved. I think in the areas that we have talked about, issues relating to right of way, revenue and so on, we can resolve and I can observe that things have been very peaceful in these areas but we can document and put in proper shape to let other people also understand that we have moved forward progressively.

“The approach the NIWA MD has taken is commendable because once we continue to dialogue, it is for the peace and prosperity of Nigerians and not about ourselves and once we are able to get that as the main objective, I think every other thing will just fall in place. We are one government and one nation and there is no reason why we should not create progress and prosperity for Nigerians and I think this is what the renewed relationship is out to achieve,” Governor Ambode said.

Earlier, Mamora said his team was at Lagos House to raise the bar for the good of the people by amicably resolving issues relating to waterways transportation, right of way of waterfront and sensitization of waterway users on the need to always fully comply with waterways transportation code.

Mamora, who is a former Speaker of Lagos State House of Assembly and Senator representing Lagos East at the Senate, also commended Governor Ambode for his achievements in office, saying posterity would be kind to him.

“With this reception, I want to highly commend your Excellency and this is highly appreciated because you have taken very bold step forward and we can always rely on your support. I also stand here to commend what you have done for Lagos State and for your achievements, I am sure posterity will judge you right,” Mamora said.

 

How Governor Ambode Is Changing Ugly Narrative of Lagos Airport Road

How Governor Ambode Is Changing Ugly Narrative of Lagos Airport Road

By May this year, Akinwunmi Ambode will be stepping down as the governor of Lagos State. He would have spent four years in office by that date.

Although a one-term governor, overseeing the affairs of Nigeria’s most populous and dynamic commercial state for only four years, Ambode will, however, be leaving behind a legacy that will give Lagos and Nigerians a positive showing locally and internationally for years to come.
If all goes well as recently hinted by Adebowale Akinsanya, the Lagos State commissioner for works and infrastructure, the Lagos airport road, which links the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA) from Oshodi, will be completed and handed in a couple of months.
Ambode secured the approval of the Federal Government to redesign and expand the road in June 2017 and eventually flagged off the reconstruction work in September of same year.
What is currently happening on the federal road leading directly to the international wing of the airport had been long overdue, but successive governments had turned a blind eye and showed less concern about the pain that Nigerians, international tourists, visitors and motorists had been subjected to for years as a result of the poor state of the airport road.

But that narrative is changing and, in the words of John Amadi, a resident of Ajao Estate, which is situated along the airport road, the redevelopment of the road “bears a testimony to the commitment of Ambode to changing the ignoble past and making Nigerians proud again”.
For decades, the airport road had been left in a state of squalor despite being the entry route into Nigeria for international visitors and investors arriving the country through its busiest airport by far, MMIA. Before the current intervention, the road bore a sad narrative of Nigeria’s shameful infrastructure trajectory.

For many years, the airport road elicited concerns from all quarters and provided uncomplimentary headlines for local and international media.

Government after government only paid lip service, as promises never got translated into reality.
For air transport passengers using the road, it was always a case of getting stuck in traffic congestion and missing their flights in the process.

For several others, in the bid to keep appointments around the airport precincts, commercial motorcycles (popularly also known as ‘Okada’) had become the alternative mode of transportation, thus mocking Africa’s biggest economy as perhaps the only country in the world where air passengers ride on motorcycles into the airport.

Apart from the fact that the two-lane road fell short of the standard expected of an international airport road, it was almost perpetually in darkness as the streetlight poles only stood menacingly to remind that government in this part of world cares less about the safety of the citizens and international visitors.

According to Adelekan, the reconstruction of the road also shows that what public office holders need to bring about positive changes at all levels is political will.

He is of the view that the often flaunted excuses of paucity of funds are most of the times not the real reason why governments fail to deliver value to the citizens.

Akinsanya, the commissioner for works and infrastructure, who visited the site last week in the company of Governor Ambode, is optimistic that the project will be completed before the end of the first half of 2019.

Although initially targeted to be delivered in December 2018 as a ‘Christmas Gift’ to Nigerians, issues bordering on relocation of utility facilities had pushed forward the projected completion date.

The road is designed as a six-lane dual carriage expressway (three major lanes on both directions), plus two-lane service roads on both directions. The reconstruction is with a ramp bridge designed to provide a U-turn from Ajao Estate to the airport. Also incorporated is a flyover at NAHCO/tollgate, and drainage works.

The road, which is nearing completion, is also coming with two new pedestrian bridges at Ajao Estate and NAHCO/Hajj Camp, as well as slip road to provide access to Ajao Estate, lay-bys and streetlights to meet required international standards.

Governor Ambode, who undertook an inspection tour of the road and other projects in the state, said his administration took the decision to reconstruct the road because it is one of the busiest roads in the state, with average vehicular volume of 50,000 daily.

According to him, the poor state of the road was not acceptable for the status of the state as the fifth largest economy in Africa and the nation’s commercial hub.

The road will link up with the Oshodi Transport Interchange (OTI), also being constructed by the government, to provide a seamless and stress-free ride for passengers arriving the airport and driving into the commercial city.

Credit—BusinessDay