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Lagos Assembly Drills Sanwo-Olu’s Commissioner Nominees

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The Lagos State House of Assembly on Thursday drilled eight commissioner nominees of Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of the state for about five hours.

It will be recalled that Sanwo-Olu sent 25 names of Commissioner nominees to the Assembly penultimate week for screening as stipulated in the constitution.

A letter from the Governor containing the names of the 25 commissioner nominees were read by the Clerk of the House, Mr Azeez Sanni during plenary.

The nominees were Mr. Rabiu Olowo Onaolapo, Mrs. Folashade Adefisayo, Professor Akin Abayomi, Dr. Idris Salako, Mr. Tunji Bello, Mr. Gbenga Omotoso, Mrs. Toke Benson-Awoyinka and Mrs. Bolaji Dada

Others included Mr. Lere Odusote, Dr. Frederick Oladeinde, Mr. Gbolahan Lawal, Ms. Adekemi Ajayi, Mr. Femi George, Dr. Wale Ahmed, Mr. Moyo Onigbanjo (SAN), Mr. Hakeem Fahm and Mrs. Ajibola Ponle.

Also on the list were Engr. Aramide Adeyoye, Mr. Segun Dawodu, Mrs. Uzamat Akinbile-Yusuf, Mr. Sam Egube, Ms Ruth Bisola Olusanya, Princess Aderemi Adebowale, Mr. Tunbosun Alake and Mr. Afolabi Ayantayo.

The list contained the first batch of the nominees with an assurance that there would be a subsequent batch.

The nominees are to serve as Commissioners and Special Advisers upon ratification by the legislature.

The 16-man adhoc committee set-up for the purpose by the House is headed the Chief Whip of the House, Hon. Rotimi Abiru.

First to be screened by the Committee was Mrs. Toke Benson-Awoyinka, Assistant Legal Adviser of the All Progressives Congress (APC) in the state.

Toke Benson, who was a House of Representatives aspirant of the party in Ikeja Constituency in the 2019 general elections, promised to bring her experience as a lawyer for 30 years to bear if she was given an opportunity.

The politician, who said she has been speaking against domestic violence and child abuse through the social media stated that she spoke against Pastor Biodun Fatoyinbo of COZA, when his alleged rape case against Busola Dakolo broke.

“I have been speaking against all issues relating to domestic violence, rape and child abuse through the social media and other means.

“We need to teach our boys, who grow into men that when a girl says ‘no’ it is ‘no.’ We should make some scapegoats to put a stop to it.

“Though there is an awareness on rape, the awareness is not enough. On child abuse, we have fathers sleeping with daughters and mothers sleeping with sons.

“Lagos is the model state in Nigeria. If we don’t speak against rape and child abuse, we will be like India where a man will enter a bus and rape about 50 women. We should have laws in place that will take care of all these,” she said.

Toke Benson also spoke about gender sensitivity, and revealed that she did not like to be regarded as a feminist and detested being pushed to the Ministry of Women Affairs all because she is a woman.

Also screened was Princess Aderemi Adebowale, who said that she was a foundation member of the ACN/APC, and a member of the support group of the party in Lagos State.

Adebowale, who said that she was a presenter of a talk show that treats life issues on LTV 8, added that she is a registered nurse.

“I will emphasise the welfare of the workers if given the portfolio of health commissioner in the state.

“Our doctors and nurses travel abroad because of the poor pay in the sector.

“If you go abroad, you will see that nurses are well taken care of. We can have facilities but maintenance is key and insurance is key,” she said.

Adebowale added that she was a sole administrator of a local government in Victoria Island, and that she was able to build about six roads and did some other projects.

“I believe in women empowerment. Also, primary healthcare cannot survive if we don’t have doctors and nurses that can man the hospitals.

“I will curb access to social media by youths to reduce drug abuse.

“We were able to survive before internet came, so our children can survive without it. Some of the lyrics the children listen to are not okay,” she said.

Answering questions from the committee members, another nominee, the immediate past Secretary to the Lagos State Government (SSG), Mr. Tunji Bello revealed that he had worked in several places and that he worked as the speech writer of the late Chief MKO Abiola.

The trained lawyer, journalist and former commissioner for the environment in the state advised that the state must intensify efforts on waste management and conversion.

“There are a few area you can set up dumpsite in Lagos State because the state is below the sea level.

“You cannot set up a dump site in Lagos Island, except in places like Agege, Abule Egba and others.

“On flooding in Lagos, we have nine main drainages in the state, and while six are developed, three are not developed.

“The Lagos Mainland drainage system is the oldest and it has about six divisions.

“The tertiary drainages and channels must link up with primary channels,” he said.

This was corroborated by the Chairman of the Committee, Hon. Rotimi Abiru, who stated that everybody was concerned about the environment in the state.

Abiru advised Bello to impress it on the government that the state could not afford not to improve on the environment.

Miss Adekemi Olanike Ajayi-Bembe, who was also screened stated that she has worked in the finance and telecommunication sectors for many years, saying that these adequately prepared her for the task ahead.

Ajayi-Bembe stressed that though Lagos State realised about N388 Billion in 2018 as Internally Generated Revenue (IGR), the state could not rely on IGR alone.

The nominee explained that not everything could not be fixed at once, and that the state must have priorities.

She added that DFI could assist the state on development, but that they had to see what the state had on ground.

“Infrastructure is very important, we need to fix roads, provide power and affordable housing for the people for them to feel the impact of the government.

“Once the structures are in place the revenue of the state would increase. This is what they practice in Singapore, China and other places,” she said.

The secretary of the APC in the state, Dr. Wale Ahmed was asked to take a bow by Hon. Rotimi Abiru as a former member of the Assembly, who left in 2003.

“The party scored 100% under the watch of the current executive members in the last general elections.

“It is a good thing that the party appointed you to be a commissioner in the state.

“He was a member of the 4th Lagos State Assembly from 1999 to 2003. We will want him to take a bow and go because of this,” Abiru said and this was accepted by other members of the committee.

Professor Akinola Abayomi, the sixth nominee to be screened by the committee, said that free health was not possible and backed the health insurance scheme of the state, saying that with this the rich would pay for the healthcare of the poor.

The last nominee that was screened for the day was the Editor of The Nation Newspapers, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho.

Omotosho, who told the lawmakers that the Freedom of Information Law (FOI) was not working in Nigeria, promised to bring his experience as a journalist of many decades to bear as a commissioner in the state.

Speaking with journalists after the exercise, Chairman of the committee, Hon. Rotimi Abiru stated that the committee shall be taking the other nominees in two sessions on Friday and Saturday.

“You have been part of the exercise, I would not want to be a judge on my own case.

“The nominees demonstrated a high level of knowledge and the understanding of government.

“They realised that this is a call to service and they have promised that they would add their experience to governance.

“I don’t have any doubt that those that we have spoken to so far are good and that they would join hands with the Governor to make the state better,” he said.

Abiru added that Dr. Wale Ahmed was asked to take a bow man and go as a former member of the House and that the committee members had agreed to give all former members of the house that privilege.

“He was a commissioner in the state and the state secretary of the APC and he worked assiduously with others to achieve 100% success for our party at the election.

“The final decision lies in the 40 members of the House.

“Ours is to screen and make a report to the entire House.

“If the entire House finds them suitable the decision would be communicated to the entire people of the state,” he said.

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Lagos Matters

Lists Of Roads Lagos Govt Will Be Working On Immediately

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Lagos Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu has declared a state of emergency on all Lagos roads and has mandated some selected construction companies to start work on rehabilitation as from today.

The roads that will be rehabilitated and reconstructed include but are not limited to;

IKEJA ZONE – Network of roads in Oregun

IKEJA G.R.A – Network roads in Ikeja G- R- A

Badagry (from Agbara to Badagry) – Agboju to Okokomaiko

IKORODU ZONE – Ketu /Ojota section of Ikorodu – Ijede road to Ewu-Elepe – Oba Sekumade road – Agric Isawo road – Imota to the rice mill

EPE ZONE – Eleko junction to T- junction at Epe – Itoikin- Epe road – Completion of network of road up to Noforija/ Mojoda ( existing contract )

LEKKI AJAH – Abraham Adesanya Roundabout to Eleko Alternative Route to Admiralty circle plaza Lekki

VICTORIA ISLAND – Network of roads in Victoria island – Network of roads in Oniru estate – Water corporation drive

ABULE EGBA – Ekoro bridge, Abule Egba – Lagos Abeokuta expressway from Abule Egba to Sango to tollgate

MUSHIN – Idi Oro road, Mushin

IKOYI – Network of roads in Ikoyi

LAGOS ISLAND – Apongbon road – Idumagbo avenue

SURULERE – Babs Animashaun , Surulere

BADAGRY – Lagos Badagry expressway from trade fair to okomaiko ( existing contract) –

These are some of the roads that will be worked on immediately to reduce the stress people on these roads go through daily. We will update you with images as we get feedback from various locations across the state as work begins

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Sanwo-Olu Okays Alliance With Ijegun Tank Farm Operators

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…Lagos Governor Meets PZ Chairman, Directors

Residents of Ijegun area of Lagos State may now be relieved of the hardship they experience over the activities of oil tank farms and mega depot belonging to Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC).

On Monday, Lagos State Government and Ijegun-Egba Tank Farm Owners and Operators Association agreed to work together in the regeneration of infrastructure in the area. At a meeting with Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu in Alausa, the leadership of the association requested the approval of the State Government to re-construct and dualise the road leading to the tank farm base in Ijegun.

Sanwo-Olu welcomed the development, saying the State would be setting up a team that would come up the partnership framework with the objective to make the deal beneficial to the residents, the Government and the tank farm owners.

The Governor hailed the tank farm owners for coming up with the intervention, noting that his government would remain open to partnerships that would bring solution to challenges facing people at the grassroots.

He said: “Today, we seem to have achieved significant progress on a conversation we started long before we came into the government on how to bring about a lasting solution to agitations from Ijegun residents over infrastructural challenge in the area.

“We want to see how we can quickly come about a lasting solution to the challenges, which businesses and residents are currently facing in the area. As a government, we have been forward looking to solutions, but we seek to solve the problem by seeking partnership that will benefit all of us. So, we welcome the request and we will set up a team that will jointly review what we need to do in the benefit of all stakeholders.

“It is going to be a partnership in which the Government would play a prominent role and we expect that, as business people, we all should collectively come together and see how we can resolve it in the interest of all stakeholders.”

Sanwo-Olu described operation of the tank farms as “critical component” of the nation’s economy, noting that his administration would not fail in responding to issues that would promote ease of doing business.

“As a Government, we have the responsibility to respond to the concerns of businessmen doing their businesses in Lagos to ensure that their business continue to flourish. But, more importantly, we also have a responsibility to keep protecting our citizens that are all around where the businesses are located to be sure that they are in a very safe and secured environment,” he said.

The association chairman, Mr. Adebowale Olujimi, praised the Governor for assenting to the request, noting that the offer was part of the interventions the tank farms owners were voluntarily engaging in through the Public Private Partnership (PPP) policy to solve challenges of development in Ijegun.

He said the association would be expecting to meet with the government’s team to harmonise the terms of the partnership, which would involve road construction and provision of healthcare facilities in the area.

Earlier, the Governor hosted the chairman of PZ Cussons Plc and members of the manufacturing company’s Board of Directors in his office on courtesy visit.

Sanwo-Olu said his administration’s ongoing drive for infrastructure renewal was aimed at incentivising the private sector to deliver the growth and promote ease of doing business.

The Governor said his government considered it important to constantly review the State’s PPP policy, with the objective to build strong partnership with the private sector players in bridging the development gap.

Chief Kola Jamodu, who led the PZ Cussons’ team, assured Sanwo-Olu that the firm would not be taking its business out of the State. He, however, urged the Governor to sustain his administration’s infrastructural renewal effort and incentivise private sector to drive growth.

SIGNED

GBOYEGA AKOSILE

CHIEF PRESS SECRETARY

OCTOBER 14, 2019

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Lagos Matters

Three men drown while fleeing police arrest, Lagos police deny incident

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A controversy has reportedly ensued following the Lagos State Police denial of having a hand in the death of three young men who drowned on Thursday October 10, at Apongbon seaside. 

Locals alleged that David, Femi another friend of theirs drowned while fleeing from men of the defunct Federal Special Anti-Robbery Squad (FSARS) who stormed the seaside by 1am. To evade arrest, a total of 10 men were said to have ran into the lagoon where they all got trapped.

It was learnt that six men were rescued that day, one was declared missing while three were recovered dead. 

The Lagos state police has however denied carrying out a raid in the community. The state police spokesperson, Elkana Bala who urged people of the community to come forward with their complaints, said the Divisional Police Officer in charge of the area had asked the people to describe the policemen or their vehicle but they couldn’t.

“The problem we are having is that everything is blamed on SARS or police. I have told you we did not have any operation in that area on Thursday. We did not.

“This is a serious issue that no DPO will want to hide. They would have quickly notified the command and put up a defence for their action. But I have called the DPO, he said he also heard it and asked the people who the policemen were but no one could tell him.

“At the moment, we do not even have record of the incident and we do not know exactly what happened. If people can assist us by bringing forth useful information, we will be able to investigate to know exactly what happened,” he told The Nation. 

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