Mega City: Fashola Emphasises Partnership with LGs

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LAGOS, Sept 14, (THEWILL) - Lagos State Governor Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN) has identified strong partnership with all local governments in the state as one of the key strategies designed to realise the state’s agenda of Africa’s model mega city.

This was contained in Fashola’s address delivered at the public presentation of a book; Building A New Lagos: The LGA and LCDA Experience held in Martinos Hotel in Ikeja by the Lagos Council of Nigerian Union of Journalists (NUJ).

Fashola, who was represented by Senior Special Assistant on Media, Mr. Hakeem Bello, said the goal of Lagos Mega City would be better-realised taking cognizance of the contribution of 20 local governments and 37 local council development areas in the state.

At the launch was Chairman of The Nation Newspapers Editorial Board, Mr. Sam Omatseye who represented former Governor Bola Ahmed Tinubu, Chairman of the Conference of Lagos State Council Chairmen, Honourable James Abiodun Faleke and key council chairmen, some of whom were conferred with awards.

In his presentation, Fashola said Lagos could only become a true mega city when the government at the grassroots "collaborate and cooperate with the state government in order to achieve common goal."

Fashola therefore said his administration "depends on inputs and contributions from 20 local governments (LG) and local council development areas (LCDAs) to build Lagos into Africa’s model mega city. This can be achieved through collaboration with the government at the grassroots."

Speaking at the presentation too, the former governor of the state, through Mr. Sam Omatseye, quickly reflected on a long battle that trailed the creation of 37 additional Local Council Development Areas in the state.

Tinubu, however, acknowledged the immense contribution of the 37 additional Local Councils to the development of Lagos State, especially in the area of building the state into Africa’s model mega city.

According to him, "the additional councils are now a crucible of democracy because the councils are the closest government to the people at the grassroots. Their creation has indeed been a blessing."

Earlier in his address, Chairman of NUJ Lagos Council, Alhaji Wahab Alabi Oba gave an overview of how the council set up a committee to conduct a survey into the activities and projects of local councils in the state, thereby leading to recognition of the performance of selected council’s bosses.

He acknowledged that the report of the survey, which was conducted within a period of three months, "shows that nearly all local governments and Local Council Development Areas in the state are working well. We can feel the impact of governance in the state and the presence of government."

Oba said the committee consequently adjudged Mushin Local Government Chairman, Honourable Babatunde Olatunde as the best performing; his counterpart in Ayobo-Ipaja Local Council Development Area, Honourable Yusuf Adebisi and Comrade Kehinde Bamigbetan of Ejigbo Local Council Development Area got an award for the most security-conscious council in the state among others.