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Lagos Matters

Democracy Won in Lagos – Habib Aruna

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It was a very good news yesterday to hear the Lagos State government considerably reduced the rates on the Land Use Charge following push back by sectoral groups within the state.
The government has always said it was open to dialogue and ready to treat all complaints.
The most exciting part of the review for me is the planned regulation on self-assessment which makes property owners to self-evaluate the value of their properties. This has taken the wind off the sail of dubious or potentially dubious civil servants who have been accused of given arbitrary value with the hope of under the table deal.
Engagement and consultations are important elements of democracy and these came alive in Lagos. I hold the view, still, that development doesn’t come cheap and must be paid for by citizens.
In the long run it is cheaper for government to provide social services for citizens than citizens acting as their own local government.
With the reduction in the rates, expected revenue into government purse will reduce apparently.
Lagos State government must continue to perform across sectors to continue to earn and enjoy the trust and support of the residents. I think people are not averse to pay more when they see corresponding value from government.
The governor and his team are capable and they must not rest. I want to see public primary and secondary schools in Lagos those of us supposedly in middle class struggling to pay expensive private schools can put our children.
It will be a long walk but it is possible to bring back functional public schools.
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