When Lagos lawmakers renewed bond with constituents
Citizens charge legislators to beam more searchlights on activities of LGs administrators
For members of the Eighth Lagos State House of Assembly, the spate of insecurity in the state in the recent past, particularly kidnapping is a challenge that requires the commitment of all to address.
The legislators, who were as concerned by the recent security challenges made Wednesday October 5, another dream come true in furtherance of their promise to make the people the cornerstone of government policies through regular interaction.
About the same time last year, they held the first-ever stakeholders summit initiated by its speaker, Hon. Mudashiru Obasa, across the 40 constituencies in the state to seek the input of citizens of the state into the 2016 budget.
This was in line with the agenda of the Speaker, Mr. Rotimi Obasa, who had, at the inception of the Assembly, promised to use the platform to interact with the people regularly with the aim to promoting good governance and accountability.
It was, therefore, not surprising that the October 5 meeting, which was held across all the constituencies in the state attracted far more people than before.
As early as 10 am, when the event was billed to start, artisans, students, activists, traditional rulers and many others had thronged the various centres to rub minds with their representatives.
One of the unique features of the event with the theme: “Neighbourhood/Community Policing Starts With Me” was that Lagos Assembly had structured the event to hold simultaneously.
The meeting was specifically designed to get the citizens more interested in the security of the state for safer living in view of current security challenges in the country.
Setting the tone for event in Agege, Obasa said the stakeholders meeting was aimed at briefing on the activities of the “Assembly in the last one year, our response to the challenges in the state as well as to obtain information from you on the peculiar security system in our constituencies with suggestion on how to combat same.
“I wish to state that it is in our determination to give meaning to good representation and good governance that we have come again with this second edition of the constituency stakeholders’ meeting, which will enable us sit together to brief you on our activities in the last one year, to rub minds and obtain first-hand information concerning the state of affairs and assess the level of development and needs of our constituents.
“We submitted the collated complaints and request of our constituencies to His Excellency, the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwumi Ambode, for executive action.
“Some of the complaints and requests that are being acted upon by the governor are, the Pen Cinema overhead bridge at Agege, two roads in each of the council and development areas of the state, the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on the Fourth Mainland Bridge and very many other projects that are being executed across the state between the last constituency stakeholders meeting and today. “The Governor had, through circular no. MEPB/B/2015/ 10 from the Ministry of Economic Planning and Budget, with Ref. No: MEPB/B.2016/774/iv/7, dated August 30, 2016, stated as follows:
“In line with the policy of the state government of inclusive governance, the process leading to 2017 budget commenced with the yearly budget consultative forum which provided an avenue for citizens and residents of the state in the three senatorial districts to make inputs into the budget. MDAs are enjoined to incorporate these inputs into their budget proposal (Annexure 1). In addition, members of the Lagos State House of Assembly held Constituency Stakeholders’ meeting across the 40 constituencies of our state and the reports are equally available as inputs into 2017 budget.
“This is our testimony to you that your contributions during stakeholders meeting are valuable and that our Governor listens. It is our delight to note that since our last meeting, the first of its kind to hold simultaneously in the state, other agencies of government, both at the Federal and State Level, have also held stakeholders meetings, engaging members of the public on policies and programmes of Government. This is a drive to bring governance closer to the people in order to facilitate participatory governance.”
Giving further account of his stewardship to his people, he disclosed that six major roads have been constructed in the area, while five others are ongoing.
This is aside the Abule Egba and Pen Cinema fly over bridges as well as pedestrian bridges at Cement bus stop, Dopemu and Iyana Ipaja.
The All Progressives Congress (APC) chieftain however, tasked Lagosians to take good care of government projects in their communities to enjoy their benefits for a long period of time.
Those who could not speak during the event were assured that the lawmakers would look into their memoranda.
Speaking on the exercise the chairman, House committee on Information and strategy, Hon. Tunde Braimoh assured Lagosians of the Lawmakers support. According to him, most of the requests made last year would be taken care in the Medium Term Expenditure Frame work (MTEF), which will last for three years.
Meanwhile, some citizens of the state have urged that the administration should put more in the rehabilitation and construction of streets roads across the state, saying: “Many roads in the streets and even some major ones, particularly within the councils are still in deplorable state.”
Others were of the view that the lawmakers should also put in more efforts to ensure that local government administrators live up to expectation as the state government has been doing.”