Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode on Thursday said that his administration would consolidate on its infrastructural renewal drive with the construction of 181 local government roads in the current fiscal year, saying the process for the award of the contract would commence next week.
Governor Ambode, who spoke at the first Quarterly Town Hall Meeting for 2017, the sixth in the series, held at the Ajelogo Housing Scheme, Ajelogo Market Road, Akanimodo, Mile 12, said the 181 roads, is an improvement on the 114 roads, two in each local government, which his administration promised to embark upon every year.
Acknowledging that most of the requests made by residents during the interactive session at the Town Hall Meeting were majorly on roads owing to the success of the 114 roads delivered in September 2016, the Governor said his administration thought it wise to ensure that the roads captured for 2017 are key roads that would have economic impact on the people living in that axis, hence the increase to 181 roads.
“I want to pronounce here that you should watch out next week in the newspapers, we are advertising 181 roads which would be done in all our local governments.
“What we have found out is that if we decided to continue with two, some of those roads are not linking each other to the main road, so most likely you would see that if we are supposed to do some road in some local governments, it would only make economic sense if there is a linkage. So you would see in the advert that some local governments would have like three, some would have four roads, but the average is that 181 if you divide it by 57 that would be a minimum of three roads from each local governments,” Governor Ambode said.
The Governor said that the choice of the roads to be constructed had been made by the local governments in conjunction with the engineers, assuring that before the end of the year when the road would be delivered, the people would be better for it.
Giving his account of stewardship in the last quarter, Governor Ambode said the choice of Akanimodo, Mile 12 as venue for the meeting was to show that the axis has not been left behind in the developmental progress ongoing in the State, saying he had come to listen to the needs of the people and where government intervention was in dire need.
He said in the last quarter, his administration kicked off its “Rent-To-Own and Rental Housing Policy” aimed at providing affordable units across the three Senatorial Districts, disclosing that there are 4,355 housing units available with over 500 applicants prequalified so far, while allocation would commence next week.
On the agricultural sector, the Governor said his administration was already looking to build on the first fruits of its partnership with Kebbi State Government with the launch of LAKE RICE in December 2016, adding that in the current quarter the government would embark on the rehabilitation of the Oko-Oba Abattoir and Lairage Complex, Agege in line with the promise to increase meat production output, develop the red meat value chain and restructure the complex for improved operations.
Governor Ambode also said that the Neighbourhood Safety Corps would become operational in the current quarter with the recruitment of 5700 personnel, while 100 would be deployed to each of the local government to complement the efforts of other security agencies in policing the State.
Expressing optimism that 2017 holds great expectations for Lagos, especially as the State gets set to mark its landmark Golden Jubilee on May 27, his administration would continue with its urban regeneration initiatives, building new infrastructure and maintaining existing ones.
He listed some of the key projects to be done to include Agric-Isawo-Arepo Road in Ikorodu, Ajelogo–Akanimodo Road Rehabilitation, Oshodi to Murtala Mohammed Airport Road, Ketu-Alapere Inner Roads Phase II, Oke Oso–Araga–Poka in Epe, Topo Garage to VIP Chalet in Badagry, Ladipo Market Road and Multilayer Car Park , Mushin and establishment of Bus Terminals and depots in Yaba, Ikeja, Oyingbo, Anthony, Ketu and Toll Gate, while more beneficiaries will receive funding from the N25bn Employment Trust Fund in January.
Oba of Lagos, Oba Rilwan Akiolu, in his remarks urged the Governor to give priority to the construction of Adeniji-Adele Road and ensure the construction of other roads that deserve utmost attention in the area.
He also urged the Governor to improve the standard of markets in the area to enviable standards, while urging total reconstruction of non-approved and unauthorised buildings already built within major markets in Lagos Island.
Akiolu further urged Lagosians to continue to cooperate and support the present administration as well as desist from any form of clandestine meetings that may undermine the progress of Governor Ambode’s administration.
Responding to questions that bordered on security, Lagos State Commissioner of Police, Mr Fatai Owoseni said with the continued support of the State Government, the Command increased the number of personnel in Ketu-Epe Police Post from two to seventy to effectively combat kidnapping and other crimes in Agbowa, Itoikin and environs, as well as transformed the hitherto abandoned Iyun Police Post to anti-kidnapping unit, while two gun boats were moved to Ejirin.
Owoseni, however, urged traditional rulers and community elders to caution their subjects especially the youths on the need to be law abiding, shun all forms of criminal activities, and only be engaged in lawful means of livelihood.