‘Focus on people not power,’ Lagos governor urges legislators

Eniola Ajayi, Lagos

L-R:* Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode (middle), with Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa; Senator representing Lagos East Senatorial District, Mr. Gbenga Ashafa; his counterpart from Lagos West Senatorial District, Senator Olamilekan Adeola Solomon and former Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Mr. Tokunbo Afikuyomi during the Opening session of the Executive/Legislative Retreat, with the theme ‘*Good Governance in a Recession’,* at the Eko Hotel & Suites, Victoria Island, Lagos, on Friday.

Synergy between the Executive and the legislative arms of government irrespective of party affiliations has been described as bedrock for good governance.

This was the position of the Lagos State Governor, Mr Akinwunmi Ambode at the opening session of the first ever Executive-Legislative Retreat in Lagos State.

Governor Ambode told the participants, mainly members of his cabinet, state and National Assembly members drawn from different political parties, that attention should be on the people and not on power.

“I wish to clearly reiterate here that economic recession is colour-blind, it has no regard for tribe or religion, it does not discriminate, neither does it delineate on political party lines.  So, when we are seated here with some of our members belonging to the PDP and majority of us in the ruling party (APC); it is very clear, and I also make bold to say that our concern is, and should be, about our people, Lagosians and Nigerians in general.

Our people demand, and request from us, good governance, leadership and hope at a critical time like this in our nation.  We must therefore rise above our personal differences and interests, with a common unity of purpose; staying focused on our promises and manifesto at all times, if our economy must grow, it must also have the mindset and culture to want to grow.  It is therefore left for all of us to learn to emphasize the people and de-emphasize the power to get good results,” he said.

L-R:* Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode (middle), with Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa; Senator representing Lagos East Senatorial District, Mr. Gbenga Ashafa; his counterpart from Lagos West Senatorial District, Senator Olamilekan Adeola Solomon and former Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Mr. Tokunbo Afikuyomi during the Opening session of the Executive/Legislative Retreat.
L-R:* Lagos State Governor, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode (middle), with Speaker, Lagos State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Mudashiru Obasa; Senator representing Lagos East Senatorial District, Mr. Gbenga Ashafa; his counterpart from Lagos West Senatorial District, Senator Olamilekan Adeola Solomon and former Lagos State Commissioner for Tourism, Mr. Tokunbo Afikuyomi during the Opening session of the Executive/Legislative Retreat.

The Lagos Governor who spoke on the theme: “Good Governance In A Recession,” also called on states in Nigeria’s South western geo-political zone, to take advantage of existing inter-state joint venture- Oodua Investment Group to get out economic recession.

“In the last sixteen months, our efforts have been focused on these principles of good governance. As you may recall, we joined the Odu’a Investments Group last year to become the Sixth State in the South West with Oyo, Ogun, Osun, Ekiti and Ondo State as founders.

This historic move is not only srategic, but deeply falls in line with our vision of reawakening the political economy and socio-economic hegemony of member states, as we proceed to extract the greater opportunities of inclusion, it is, of necessity to call on other State Governments, irrespective of our political leanings that the Odu’a
Investment initiative is a veritable economic vehicle for us to take our people out of recession,” according to Ambode.img_20161014_1201391

Speaker of the State House of Assembly, Mr Mudashiru Obasa affirmed that despite the independence of the legislature, the lawmakers remained committed to good governance through mutual understanding between the two (Executive and Legislature) arms of government.

A member of the Nigerian Senate from Lagos West- Senator Olamilekan Adeola in an interview said the Nigerian government could also take a cue from such a parley to stimulate the country’s economy.

Speaking in the same vein, another Lagos Senator, Gbenga Ashafa said that periodic engagements between the Executive and the National Assembly should be encouraged to engender seamless operations in government.

The 3-day retreat holding at the Eko Hotel and Suites, Victoria Island Lagos, ends on Sunday.