Oba of Lagos, Rilwan Akiolu has accused former President Olusegun Obasanjo of denying the state opportunity of being granted special status. Akiolu made this revelation on Tuesday at the third quarterly Town Hall Meeting organised by the Lagos State Government at the Indoor Sports Hall, Teslim Balogun Stadium, Surulere. Oba Akiolu recalled that Obasanjo had the opportunity to grant Lagos aspecial status during his eight years tenure, but never did in spite of the pressure mounted on him.
He added that when a delegation of eminent Lagosians, which he led, met with the former president on the issue, Obasanjo told them that he had already drafted the special status plan for Lagos. The monarch added that if Obasanjo had fulfilled that promise, the issue of the National Assembly turning down Senator Tinubu’s bill would not have risen. “Yar’Adua had promised to grant Lagos a special status. If Yar’Adua had not died, it would have happened by now,” he said.
The monarch, however, said it was a matter of time as Lagos would certainly be accorded a special status. Oba Akiolu also expressed worry over the spate of kidnapping in Lagos despite the efforts of Governor Akinwunmi Ambode to provide security, calling for the establishment of Local Government Security Committee to work with the police to nip kidnapping in the bud.
Also speaking at the event, Governor Akinwumi Ambode assured residents that better days were ahead. The governor said the N500 million meant for Lagos State Persons Living with Disability would be released later this month. “The funding for the N500m Lagos State Persons Living with Disability Fund has been provided and beneficiaries will start getting support from this quarter”, he said. He added that review of the 2016 budget showed that the state generated N97.3 billion in the last quarter and had a total expenditure of N110.2billion.
Ambode said: “We expended N55 billion on capital expenditure in the last quarter. Our budget performance for January to September is 69 percent as against 65 percent for the same period in 2015. “A total of N166.8billion has been spent on capital projects this year more than double the N53.6 billion spent for the same period last year. We believe strongly that continuous increase in the capital expenditure spending is a necessity at this particular period. “In this quarter, we will concentrate more resources on capital projects. We will put money in the hands of our local contractors and through them stimulate and reflate the economy.”
The event was attended by the senator representing Lagos Central, Senator Oluremi Tinubu, Senator Ganiyu Solomon, Chief Tajudeen Olusi, party chieftains, captains of industry among others. Just recently, the traditional ruler urged Nigerians to be patient in spite of the hard times in the country, assuring them that all will be well.